The left-wing candidates who won’t be standing for Labour in the general election

The figures on the left who have been deselected by Labour.

Faiza Shaheen

Speculation surfaced this week that Diane Abbott would not be allowed to stand for the Labour party in her Hackney North and Stoke Newington constituency in the forthcoming election. On May 31, Keir Starmer ended the speculation, telling reporters she is “free to go forward” as a Labour candidate.

Prior to Starmer’s announcement, the veteran Labour politician Diane Abbott accused the party of carrying out a “cull” of left-wing candidates.

The controversy surrounding Abbott’s future with the party, placed the spotlight on a number of figures, considered to be on the left of the party, who have been deselected by Labour to run as candidates, ahead of the June 7 deadline. At that point, all parties must have submitted the candidates standing in the general election.  

Here are the left-wing figures who have been blocked from standing as Labour candidates in the general election.

Jeremy Corbyn

The former Labour leader, who led the party from 2015 to 2020, has represented Islington North since 1983. Corbyn had the whip removed in November 2020 after he insisted that the accusations of antisemitism in the party while he was leader had been “dramatically overstated for political reasons.” Corbyn officially launched his campaign to be an independent MP this week, saying he wanted to be an “independent voice for equality, for democracy, and peace.”

Sam Tarry

In October 2022, Sam Tarry was deselected as an MP by local Labour members, amid a row in the Ilford South constituency. Tarry, who is in a relationship with Angela Rayner, has alleged serious concerns about the conduct of the campaign against him to Labour HQ claiming that he had discovered “ghost members” who had left the constituency or died. The former trade union official who helped organise Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership campaign, was sacked as shadow transport minister in July 2022, after he attended a picket line to support RMT workers.

Lloyd Russell-Moyle

On May 29, Lloyd Russell-Moyle announced that Labour had told him that he would not be eligible to be a candidate at the July 4th election. The MP for Brighton Kemptown, who was elected in 2017, said he believes the deselection is a “vexatious and politically motivated complaint” about his behaviour eight years ago.

In a personal statement on social media, Russell-Moyle said the complaint letter “came out of the blue” from someone anonymous to him.

“This is a false allegation that I dispute totally, and I believe it was designed to disrupt this election.

“There isn’t enough time to defend myself as these processes within the party take too long, so the party have told me that I will not be eligible to be a candidate at the next election. I’m gutted.”

Faiza Shaheen

Faiza Shaheen, an economist in economic inequality, has been blocked by Labour from standing in Chingford and Woodford Green. The decision was based on a series of tweets that allegedly raised concerns over her suitability as a candidate. One tweet was about her experiences of Islamophobia within the party, said Shaheen, and another about liking a sketch by a Jewish comedian that referred to critics of Israel coming under attack. She said she had since apologised at a disciplinary hearing about a tweet that “plays into a trope” about Jewish people. 

Speaking on BBC Newsnight, Shaheen said she was in a state of shock after receiving an email informing that her candidacy had been blocked. In the 2019 general election, Shaheen came within just 1,262 votes of unseating Iain Duncan Smith. She claims she has faced a “systematic campaign of racism, Islamophobia and bullying,” and has announced she will challenge the decision in the courts.

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