Rebecca Long Bailey sacked, but Robert Jenrick remains

By Tim Le Couilliard, Newgate Public Affairs

The headline political news of the day is that former leadership hopeful Rebecca Long Bailey has been removed from the Labour Shadow Cabinet. Seen as one of the few “Corbynistas” on the Labour front bench, Long Bailey has been sacked from her Education portfolio following a Tweet that seemingly endorsed an article that “contained an antisemitic conspiracy theory.” The article, amongst other unrelated things, suggested that the police responsible for the death of George Floyd had received lethal tactics training from the Israeli secret services.

Long Bailey has stated that she did not endorse the full article by actress Maxine Peake and that she had agreed with its call for Labour unity. It is not the first time Long Bailey has been accused of anti-Semitism after reports that she had failed to condemn a Labour member who had blamed the “Israel lobby” for the 2019 General Election defeat. In a statement, Labour has said that “restoring trust with the Jewish community is a number one priority” for the new leadership.

Amidst an educational crisis, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer will be sure to appoint a replacement soon.

Across the other side in the actual Cabinet, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that he has “full confidence” in Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick over “Westferrygate”. Jenrick has been facing criticism after granting permission for a luxury housing development to Conservative donor Richard Desmond. Despite Downing Street stating that the matter is “closed”, a future reshuffle (rumoured to be in September) could see changes to the Cabinet with Jenrick considered at risk. Starmer has yet to call for the sacking of Jenrick, although following the sacking of Long Bailey, it could place further pressure on the Prime Minister to take action.

On Covid-19, a “major incident” has been declared in Bournemouth as thousands of people have headed to beaches during today’s heatwave. Bournemouth Council has called on would-be beachgoers to keep away and have instructed the police to increase the number of patrols and for dispersal orders to be issued on beaches and piers. The Council is concerned with problems including gridlock and illegal parking, “excessive” littering and anti-social behaviour.  Temperatures soared to 33.3C today!

Another thing that “soared” was the newly repainted Prime Ministerial Jet which took off from Cambridge today with its new Union Jack livery.