Prominent Corbyn critic will be able to run again

Dame Margaret Hodge, who criticized Labour leader over anti-Semitis, reselected by her local party to run again.

Elad Benari ,

Margaret Hodge
Margaret Hodge
Reuters

Dame Margaret Hodge, the British Labour MP and prominent critic of leader Jeremy Corbyn, has been reselected by her local party to run again for the east London seat of Barking, The Guardian reported Tuesday.

Hodge, who has served as MP for Barking in east London since 1994, is infamous for a row with Corbyn over anti-Semitism within the Labour Party. Last year, Hodge allegedly shouted at Corbyn, calling him an "anti-Semite and a racist" and adding, "You have proved you don't want people like me in the party."

Labour had considered action against Hodge following the confrontation but later dropped the investigation.

A reselection contest was triggered last month in the constituency. On Monday night, she tweeted a picture of herself surrounded by colleagues, with a one-word message: “Victory!”

Her fellow Labour backbencher Ruth Smeeth raised a point of order in the House of Commons on Monday to announce that Hodge had been reselected, according to The Guardian.

Smeeth, the parliamentary chair of the Jewish Labour Movement, said: “I just want to put on record the fact that Margaret Hodge, the honourable (member) for Barking, has been reselected this evening, against an appalling attack by members of our party and I am delighted she remains a Labour candidate at the next general election.”

The move by activists to trigger her reselection was described last month by the Jewish Labour Movement as a shameful moment for the party, while Labour’s former deputy leader, Harriet Harman, said she was “dismayed more than I can say”.

The Board of Deputies of British Jews congratulated Hodge on her “emphatic reselection”, adding in a statement, “Trolls who opposed her reckoned without Margaret’s strength and popularity. Not lost on anyone that Labour’s so-called ‘anti-racist’ leader missing in action as his drones tried to force out another Jewish MP.”

Over the last several years, dozens of Labour members have been suspended over their anti-Semitic statements.

Corbyn himself has been accused of holding anti-Semitic views by senior UK Jewish leaders.

Much of the criticism against Corbyn is over his playing down the anti-Semitism in his party and alienating Jews, but he insists he is not an anti-Semite and claims he has opposed it his entire life.

In protest of the anti-Semitism in the party, a series of Labour members have resigned in recent months.




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