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Over 180,000 sign up as registered supporters in Labour leadership election

CorbynComforting news for Corbyn supporters as 183,541 people paid £25 to become registered supporters in the Labour leadership election in just 48 hours. The stitch-up of the right on the NEC had prevented around 200,000 party members from being able to cast a vote, forcing many who had joined the party since January 12th to sign up as registered supporters, at a huge cost of £25.

The change in procedures was condemned by many at the time, and it was particularly noted that young people, with less money, would be more affected by the price hike. The change from £3 to £25 is likely to affect the composition of the selectorate somewhat, and while those joining will possibly be a more middle-class group, Corbyn last summer won over 88,0000 of the 105,000 votes in the registered supporters section. This time, however, both Progress and “Saving Labour” have been signing up ‘moderates’, but how many moderates there out outside of the Labour Party who are willing to pay £25 to vote for Owen Smith, remains to be seen.

Later today we will also see Jeremy Corbyn launch his leadership bid formally, following a large rally last night at the Labour Assembly Against Austerity. The campaign website from last summer has already been rebooted and relaunched, as members await any new policy announcements by Corbyn and his team over the summer.

The next phase of the leadership election will be CLP nominations but also affiliate supporter sign-ups. Trade unions and other affiliates are allowed to register their members as supporters as an ‘opt-in’ in order to get a vote in the contest, provided they have been members of the affiliate since before January 12.

6 Comments

  1. James Martin says:

    I was at a kids play at my lad’s primary the other day and one of the parents came up to me afterwards fuming and said you’re in the Labour Party aren’t you? Yes I said not quite knowing what was coming next, and it turns out that she had joined the Party a few months ago to support Corbyn, only to then be denied the right to vote and was livid that as a result she’d have to find another £25 to register as a supporter to do so but was really struggling to find the money as they simply didn’t have that kind of money to spare but was determined that they were going to scrape it from somewhere. It was a very humbling experience, but a story that is being repeated across the country by the tens of thousands. Labour Party democracy should not have a price tag on it that excludes working class people like this has attempted to do and those NEC members who nodded this outrage through should be utterly ashamed of themselves (are you listening Ann Black?), but I am optimistic that we can win again this year – although everyone who is a member of an affiliated union must be making their voices heard at all levels, branch, region and general secretary to ensure that our unions also continue to back Corbyn as we cannot allow the anti-democratic coup plotters to win – what has happened already to witch-hunted socialists and CLP’s like Brighton and Wallasey is a taste of what we can expect if they do.

    1. Bazza says:

      James I think I would have been tempted to stick her a tenner!
      Re Ann – don’t know enough about this and perhaps she could explain herself but need discipline now and to support all of the 6 on the Left NEC slate.
      We can work out a more democratic way to choose the slate next time!
      Solidarity!

  2. Shirley Knott says:

    I’ve read on one site that the numbers are expected to be culled by knocking at least 40,000 off during ‘processing’, and on another that many people who used the ‘reason for joining’ box to state their support for Corbyn couldn’t get their application through or didn’t receive the Iain McNicol email. Momentum needs to have people keeping eyes on this.

    for a bit of light fun, visit fb group page “Jeremy Corbyn’s Terrible ‘Thugs’. It really will lighten the mood!

    1. Jim Dye says:

      I suspect you’re right about the attempt to cull – Micheal Mansfield may be very busy again I suspect.

    2. June says:

      It’s looking like I’m one of the Supporters being culled. I gave a reason for registering which did not imply which way I’d be voting and in all my communications with the Labour Party I have not given any information about which way I might choose to vote.

      All of the Labour Party online forms have a mandatory phone number field. But, because of health problems and the need for privacy, I’m unable to provide a valid phone number. I suspect this may be the reason I have not had my registration as a supporter confirmed.

      To require telephone contact is discrimination on grounds of disability. If I don’t get any resolution from my legal query to the party, doesn’t this imply that the party is open to legal challenge?

      It appears that the phone number is being used to contact people trying to register as supporters so that they can be culled if they give a “wrong” response.

      Surely, the way this whole process is being handled is legally dubious, opening it to challenge and ultimately total invalidation?

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