Our political editor, WALTER CRONXITE, on how the stresses and strains of Brexit are showing themselves in the local Labour Party
A Labour Party official who works in Croydon MP Sarah Jones’s office yesterday courted controversy and internal party division when he used social media to criticise Streatham’s Progress MP, Chuka Umunna.
Jack Buck is paid to be the professional organiser of Croydon Labour’s political campaigning.
Yesterday he posted a tweet in response to Umunna’s awkwardly cosy photographs on social media from the march for a People’s Vote, showing the Labour backbencher arm-in-arm with fellow Remainers, including Tory MP Anna Soubry.
It had all the charm and delicacy of Sir Les Patterson, Barry Humphries’ notoriously disgusting alter ego.
“Clean up in aisle five, I just vommed”, Buck tweeted (perhaps, in the process, betraying a bourgeois condescension for supermarket cleaners).
Buck’s sick-making dislike of the bipartisan Remainers was in stark contrast to comments made by the politician whose office space he shares in the working week.
“Amazing scenes from the march in London today,” was the view of MP Jones.
The Brexit splits within Croydon Labour were evident elsewhere in the party’s senior ranks over Saturday’s march through central London, attended by 700,000 protestors.
Croydon’s £55,000 per year council leader Tony Newman, a former keyboard player in a little-regarded 1970s punk band, spent Friday night in Manchester for supergroup U2’s concert.
Using his Twitter account – which notably fails to mention the Labour Party on his profile – Newman chose to quote Bono, the U2 lead singer, by stating that Manchester is “still a great European city”.
David White, the secretary of Croydon Central Constituency Labour Party, responded by stating that Manchester will still be a great European city “whether we’re in or out of the EU, Tony”.
In typical style, Newman over-reacted. “Not if Visas & border patrols cut all but a privileged rich and elite off from mainland Europe, time to stop pandering to the Far Right,” Newman berated the most senior of his own constituency party’s officers.
Such bitter in-fighting is enough to make Croydon voters queasy, if not actually start to projectile vomit.
Hopefully, residents have stronger constitutions than Buck.
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