Sunday 18 February 2018

Jeremy Corbyn threatens to sue his own party if they refuse to put him on ballot paper

Contender: Angela Eagle and Jeremy Corbyn Photo: PA/PA Wire
Contender: Angela Eagle and Jeremy Corbyn Photo: PA/PA Wire

Laura Hughes

Jeremy Corbyn has suggested he will go to court if the National Executive Commitee say he can't go on the ballot paper automatically.

"I will challenge that", he told the Andrew Marr show. "The rules and my view are absolutely clear. I have taken soundings from lawyers I will be on the ballot paper."

Labour is set for tumultuous few weeks with the potential to split the party as Angela Eagle launches a bid to oust Mr Corbyn as leader of the party.

The two rivals made televised pitches to supporters this morning in broadcast interviews after a dramatic series of developments ended the stand-off over the embattled leader's position.

Ms Eagle suggested Mr Corbyn should not automatically be on the ballot. "He will have to find the nominations", she said.

"I'm a gay woman with strong, Northern, working class roots. I think I'm the right person for this job at this time".

Appearing on the Andrew Marr show, Mr Corbyn said he was "disappointed" that Angela Eagle was  launching a challenge for his post and urged her to "think for a moment" about  her actions.

The crisis within the Labour ranks has seen scores of frontbenchers resign, with Ms Eagle the most senior member of the shadow cabinet to quit, and a motion of no confidence in Mr Corbyn by his MPs was backed by 172 votes to 40.

Former shadow business secretary Ms Eagle said Mr Corbyn had "failed to fulfil his first and foremost duty, that is to lead an organised and effective Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) that can both hold the Government to account and demonstrate we are ready to form a government in the event of a general election".

Speaking earlier this morning Angela Eagle did not set out any policy areas where she differed from Mr Corbyn but said he was not able to win a general election.

On the Labour leader she said: "He's not a bad man, he's not a leader though. He doesn't connect ".

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