Independent MPs Ivan Lewis and Ian Austin who both resigned from Labour citing antisemitism claims tore into Jeremy Corbyn on Monday over racism.
Ian Austin, who resigned the whip earlier this year, launched an attack on Corbyn in a debate requested by the Labour leader on the rule of law.
“I left the Labour Party to shine a spotlight on the disgrace it’s become under his leadership because I regard myself as proper, decent, traditional Labour,” Austin told MPs.
“Not like the extremists who have taken over this party and are dragging it into the mud,” he added.
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) September 9, 2019
“These are people, the Leader of the Opposition, the Shadow Chancellor, who spent their entire time in politics working with, defending, all sorts of extremists, in some cases terrorists and antisemites,” he claimed.
Lewis, the MP for Bury, who quit Labour last year, made similar remarks to Austin on Monday evening, wearing a kippah as he addressed the Commons.
— Narinder Singh (@NSP55) September 9, 2019
Lewis told MPs: “Because [Jeremy Corbyn’s] leadership has the led to the party of anti-racism and equality becoming the party of institutionalised antisemitism, so much so Mr Speaker that the majority of Jews in this country feel they would not be safe in the event of him becoming Prime Minister.”
The remark was drowned out by boos and disapproval – and one MP could be heard telling him: “You’ve really let yourself down.”
Lewis, who was suspended from Labour over sexual harassment claims in 2017, which he denied, resigned his membership a year later.
- Read more – Opinion: Double standard at the heart of Labour’s antisemitism battle