Union leader Sir Keir Starmer is reportedly set to reshuffle his shadow cabinet team on Sunday amid the effects of the party’s dismal election performance.
Sir Keir has come under fire after deciding to dismiss deputy Angela Rayner from her role as party leader and national campaign coordinator on Saturday. Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham warned him that this was “wrong”.
But the opposition leader will try to reshape his top team further over the weekend to reverse the party’s downward spiral in England.
Not only did the former prosecutor reshuffle, but he also hired Gordon Brown’s former chief poll taker Deborah Mattinson, who wrote a book on why Labor lost the so-called “red wall” in the 2019 general election, as director of Strategy.
It comes after Labor was drubbing in some parts of the country, losing control of a multitude of councils, and being defeated by Boris Johnson’s Conservatives in the Hartlepool by-elections – the first time since being elected in the Northeast establishment in the 1970s.
Ms. Rayner’s sacking signaled cracks at the top of the party, with arguments over who was responsible for electoral strategy, which suffered losses in former industrial areas where Labor has traditionally been supported.
The party lost control of Durham City Council for the first time in a century, saw its leader deposed by the Greens in Sheffield, and suffered heavy local defeats in Rotherham and Sunderland.
Although Labor sources wanted to stress Saturday night that Ms. Rayner – a former social worker hailing from Stockport, northwest – would continue to play a leading role on Sir Keir’s team, party celebrities have spoken out against the decision to appoint her as Remove chairman.
Named a potential successor to Sir Keir after winning an overwhelming majority for a second term as Labor Mayor of Greater Manchester, Mr Burnham tweeted: “I cannot support this.
“That’s just wrong when it’s true.”
Members of former chairman Jeremy Corbyn’s team, who come from the left of the party, criticized, among other things, the move to make the vice chairman a “scapegoat”.
Former Shadow Secretary of the Interior Diane Abbott called it “confusing” while John McDonnell called it a “big mistake”.
Mr. McDonnell, a former shadow chancellor, told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show: “When the party leader said on Friday that he would take responsibility for the Hartlepool election result and then for the scapegoats Angela Rayner, I think many of us believe that unfair, especially since we all know that Keir’s leadership style is that his office controls everything.
“It’s very centralized and he controlled the campaign.”
Scottish Labor leader Anas Sarwar said it was his “understanding” that Ms. Rayner would “take a different position in the shadow cabinet”.
Mr Sarwar said Labor must “pull together” to put the party back on the road to power, adding: “I don’t think anyone can be scapegoated, I don’t think so. that someone says a person is to blame. ” ”
Corbyn’s ally Abbott used her interview with Sky News’ Sophy Ridge on Sunday to urge Sir Keir to revert to “popular” guidelines in the 2019 Manifesto, despite what helped bring about Labour’s worst general election defeat since 1935.