A former Labour member who quit his own party over the anti-Semitism scandals surrounding leader Jeremy Corbyn unexpectedly turned Monday’s Brexit debate around, roasting the Labour leader for failing to uphold the same standards he accused Prime Minister Boris Johnson over.
The Dudley North Member of Parliament, now sitting as an independent after he resigned the Labour whip in February over rising antisemitism in the party and Jeremy Corbyn’s negative attitude towards the 2016 Brexit referendum, spoke out in an emergency debate on the rule of law Monday evening.
UK Opposition Leader Corbyn Makes Simon Wiesenthal Anti-Semitism List https://t.co/k5j6dy100v
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) December 28, 2018
Although the debate ended without a vote and was not attended by the Prime Minister it was targeting, the session had been called by Labour MPs alarmed at the possibility the Prime Minister might find a way around a law they had passed to ban a full Brexit, forcing the nation to delay its withdrawal from the European Union once again. The Prime Minister has vowed to obey the will of the British people and take the country out of the European Union “do or die” by the end of October, a position that puts him squarely at odds with Parliament.
Telling the house he wanted to discuss politicians obeying the rule of law in a speech that was persistently and angrily shouted down by his former Labour colleagues — with no attempt at intervention from the speaker — Mr Austin emphasised his feeling that it was hypocritical, given the past behaviour of members of the Labour leadership team, that they should lecture the Prime Minister on being lawful.
The left-wing rebel told Parliament, as he was chided by former colleagues for his comments, that: “I think it’s absolutely incredible [Labour] lecturing anybody else about observing the rule of law… the leader of the opposition, the shadow chancellor, who have spent their entire time in politics defending all sorts of extremists and in some cases terrorists and antisemites.
“Remember what these people said about the IRA. It may be ancient history to some of Labour’s young new recruits, but many people will never forget how they supported terrorists responsible for horrific carnage in a brutal civil war which saw people blown up in pubs, hotels, and shopping centres.
“A few weeks after the IRA blew up a hotel in Brighton and murdered five people at the Tory party conference the leader of the opposition invited two suspected IRA terrorists to Parliament. When the man responsible for planting that bomb was on trial, he protested outside the court! … and they have the brass neck to lecture anybody on the rule of law. What a disgrace. ”
Tony Blair Attacks ‘Poison’ of Anti-Semitism in Swipe at Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour https://t.co/PytwtW1moF
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) May 7, 2019
Answering his critics as he spoke, who insisted that he should no longer sit among other left-wingers because of his criticism of Jeremy Corbyn, Austin shot back: “I left the labour party to shine a spotlight on the disgrace it has become under his leadership, and because I regard myself as proper, decent traditional labour, not like the extremists who have taken over this party and are dragging it in the mud.”
Parliament will vote Monday evening on whether to hold a general election, before being suspended for five weeks into mid-October. The closure brings an end to the longest Parliament since the English Civil War, but the move by the government has been treated with outrage by anti-Brexit rebels, who recognise the so-called Prorogation of the house limits the time available to them to sabotage Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union.
While Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn has persistently called for a general election in recent years, and particularly since Boris Johnson became Prime Minister — accusing him of having no electoral mandate — he quickly changed his mind when the PM agreed there should be a snap vote last week, deciding that now was not the time. Now Labour insists there should only be a vote if the number of potential outcomes are limited, preventing the British people from voting in a government the Labour leadership considers unacceptable.
Breitbart London reported the remarks of Mr Austin when he resigned from Labour, criticising the leadership of the hard-left Jeremy Corbyn. Mr Austin said: “This is the most difficult decision I’ve ever had to take, but the truth is I’m ashamed of the Labour party.
“I grew up listening to my dad, a refugee from the Holocaust teaching me about the evils of hatred and prejudice… I would never believe that I’d be leaving the Labour party because of racism… I think Jeremy Corbyn and the people around him have turned what was a mainstream political party into something very different.
“I think they’ve created a culture of extremism, intolerance and bullying. And I think that’s unbelievable, that decent people who have devoted their entire lives to mainstream politics are being driven out by this culture of extremism and in some cases, anti-semitism. ..I have to be honest and the truth is that I have become ashamed of the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn.”
As UK Labour Splits Over Anti-Semitism, Jewish Group Warns Corbyn: Take Action on Hate https://t.co/RBpX1AivCH
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) February 18, 2019