Labour pressure group urges vote against Jeremy Corbyn

  • 11 July 2015
  • From the section UK
Jeremy Corbyn
Image caption Britain's biggest trade union Unite has announced that it would be backing Mr Corbyn

A Labour pressure group has asked party members to vote against Jeremy Corbyn in the leadership contest.

Labour First said Mr Corbyn - who is seen as the most left-wing candidate in the race - would "destroy Labour's chances of electability".

The group has urged members to vote for other candidates to prevent Mr Corbyn winning Constituency Labour Party nominations, known as CLPs.

The other leadership hopefuls are Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper and Liz Kendall.

CLP nominations have no bearing on the leadership election result, which is decided by the individual votes of party members and supporters, but they are an indicator of the level of support for each candidate.

'Transfer votes'

In a newsletter emailed to members, first reported by the Huffington Post website, Labour First said there was support for the three other leadership contenders.

Group secretary Luke Akehurst said: "We clearly do not share Jeremy Corbyn's politics and believe these would destroy Labour's chances of electability.

"We would therefore encourage supporters of Andy, Yvette and Liz to transfer votes to each other at CLP nomination meetings so that as few CLPs as possible make supporting nominations for Jeremy."

Constituency Labour parties have until 31 July to make nominations for a candidate.

Who is Jeremy Corbyn?

First elected to Parliament in 1983, the former trade union official has campaigned on a succession of left-wing causes, including the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) and the Stop The War coalition, and is a columnist for the Morning Star.

He has frequently been at odds with his party, opposing the Iraq war and other foreign interventions and backing public ownership of the banks. Voting records suggest he has rebelled against Labour 533 times since the party came to power under Tony Blair in 1997.

He has said his leadership campaign marked the launch of a broader anti-austerity movement.

Who are the Labour leadership candidates?

Reports this week said 28 CLPs had nominated Mr Corbyn so far, and Labour sources told the BBC that number could go much higher.

Earlier this month Britain's biggest trade union Unite announced that it would be backing Mr Corbyn, who is the MP for Islington North.

The union's executive committee voted to lend its support to Mr Corbyn, with Andy Burnham as its second preference.

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