Stephen Pound, former Labour MP for Ealing North, said Jeremy Corbyn become “emblematic” of a host of problems in the country and within the Labour Party and he needs to move on from politics. It comes as Sir Keir Starmer’s administration are reportedly forging ahead with plans to select a new Labour candidate for Islington North, which Mr Corbyn represented as a Labour MP from 1983 until October 2020, from when he became an independent MP after having the Whip removed.
The move would prevent Mr Corbyn from ever representing Labour again – even if he apologises, which is a condition of his readmission into the party.
Mr Corbyn has remained as an independent MP for refusing to apologise for claiming that allegations of anti-Semitism during his time in office were inflated by his opponents.
Speaking to GB News on Wednesday Mr Pound was clear that the party are unable to do deselect Mr Corbyn, but he urged the left-winger to move on.
He said: “You can’t stand as a Labour candidate if you’re not a member of the Labour Party.”
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But Mr Pound, who is a friend of Mr Corbyn’s, said he should get out.
He said: “The whole thing about Jeremy Corbyn is not him being an individual, it’s about recasting the ruins within the Labour Party.
“The whole idea that about 45 percent voted for one party and 45 percent voted for the other and ten percent threw their votes away on the Liberals, those days are long, long gone.”
The former MP stressed what the deselection row is really about is “the far-left of the Labour Party, and the far-right of the party.”
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“Leave, retire with the laurels of a grateful constituency pressed to his brow!”
The comments come as allies of Sir Keir told the Sunday Times that an apology by Mr Corbyn would now be too little, too late and they would try to block him from standing for Labour officially.
They told the paper: “We are determined to bring this to a head. The current position is not sustainable.”
Mr Corbyn was suspended from Labour in October 2020 after claiming the scale of anti-Semitism had been ‘dramatically overstated for political reasons’ by opponents inside and outside Labour, along with the media.
His suspension was later overturned by the party’s National Executive Committee but he has not had the party whip – that allows him to represent it in the Commons – returned.