For true socialists up and down the land, last night must have been a bitter blow. Electoral defeat might be something they have come to expect, but as we know the actual job of a left-wing leader is to remould the party and cast out the Blairites. So to lose the only real revolutionary in the fight is a true misfortune.
Yes, Ian Lavery has decided not to run. Having said that he was 'seriously considering' a tilt at the top job, the party chairman has decided others are better placed to lead Labour. The MP for Wansbeck, we were told, was the only candidate who 'wouldn't take any crap from Boris Johnson'. Indeed, the pair have already had one minor showdown:
you can pinpoint the exact moment he’s considering throwing his career away and just smacking boris pic.twitter.com/kCQSWDNkSG
— ryan 🚩 (@ryxnf) January 1, 2020
So it is with great sadness that Mr S has to report Mr Lavery's decision. This stalwart of socialism, this former leader of the National Union of Mineworkers, who has denied raiding his own union's piggy bank, has announced that he has decided not to run and is instead backing Rebecca Long-Bailey for leader.
No doubt a wave of relief has descended over both Boris and the Blairites. Lavery said:
“'Our party needs a leader who can not only represent our ‘heartlands’, as well as winning over new supporters, but to listen to the people who live in them too. We must ensure that we never again are seen to take working class communities for granted or to write them off as ignorant or ill educated... With this in mind, I will be throwing my full support behind Rebecca Long Bailey as the best person to lead our party.'
You can read his full statement here:
I have just released a statement regarding the Leadership of the Labour Party. It has been truly humbling to receive so much support from our fantastic members and my @UKLabour colleagues. Please read the full statement below 👇 pic.twitter.com/fPDl53FD3g
— Ian Lavery MP (@IanLaveryMP) January 6, 2020