This is, I think, self-explanatory: a letter to Keir Starmer sent today:
I have today read that you are proposing an NEC motion which has the effect of banning Jeremy Corbyn as a potential Labour parliamentary candidate. I object to this, and whilst no doubt you will never read this letter, I shall have at least put my objection on the record.
I have been a Labour Party member for 39 years, during which time I have served as a councillor for twelve, a Labour Party organiser for seven and MP for nine – as well as holding a multitude of local activist positions. I feel I have as much a right to call the Labour Party my own as you do.
I never actually got to know Jeremy personally when I was in parliament but one thing was clear – serial rebel though he was, both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown were big enough to tolerate his presence as a member of the PLP. It seems you are not big enough. That sends a seriously negative signal to the membership that you prefer narrow factionalism rather than a broad democratic base. This does not bode well. I think you are already treading on thin ice with your retreat from the pledges you made to members when you stood for the leadership. Do you think people, i.e. the wider electorate (not just the minority of people who join political parties) don’t notice backsliding?
Leaders who purge dissent may think they’re strong, but it actually suggests weakness. It is weakness. I don’t know whether you think you’ve got the keys to No. 10 in the bag, but I would suggest it would help your chances if you spent less time telling the world that the Labour Party is merely yours, and recognise that diverse opinion is a healthy requisite in any democratic body. It’s time you stopped obsessing about Jeremy Corbyn. If you can’t drop this obsession, many people may wonder if you aren’t actually just another establishment puppet.
I told myself I would keep this short. I could write much more. But that wouldn’t increase the chances of this letter to you being read, I suspect.