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Momentum in plot to oust Corbyn rivals; GROUP SAY 'HIT LIST' DID NOT REFLECT NATIONAL POLICY.

Byline: KATIE DICKINSON Reporter katie.dickinson@trinitymirror.com @KATIEJDICKINSON

A FIFTH of Labour MPs have appeared on a deselection "hit list" drawn up by pro-Corbyn campaigners in South Tyneside, it has been reported.

Momentum activists have complied a list of 49 sitting MPs who, it suggested, could "join the Liberals", according to The Times.

They were said to include Chuka Umunna - who led a revolt on leaving the EU single market in the Queen's Speech debate - Chris Leslie and Jess Philips.

The post appeared on the Facebook page for Momentum: South Tyneside but has since been removed.

Momentum dismissed The Times report as "laughable", saying the list did not reflect the group's national policy.

"The list was published by a local Momentum Facebook page with 136 likes, and in no way represents Momentum's national policy," a spokesman said.

A YouGov poll for The Times put Labour eight points ahead of the Conservatives (46-38) in its first opinion poll since the General Election.

The hit list report comes as fears grow among some Labour MPs that Mr Corbyn's left-wing supporters have been emboldened by the unexpected election gains and will try to force out MPs who have criticised him.

Concerns were heightened when one senior ally of Mr Corbyn warned it was "unreasonable" for Labour MPs not to face the prospect of re-selection as he took aim at the party's right.

Frontbencher Chris Williamson said MPs must have the support of the party's membership, which has overwhelmingly supported Mr Corbyn in two leadership elections, and no members of the Commons should be guaranteed a "job for life".

"There are interest groups and individual MPs in this party who think it's their god-given right to rule," he said.

"No MP should be guaranteed a job for life and it's crucial that we all get with the times.

"MPs elected in earlier phases of this party run the risk of failing to understand what is really going on out there in society.

"Although this party's hundreds of thousands of new members were once demonised the election has shown that the political instincts of these members are in line with popular opinion.

"For our party to succeed these members must be listened to."

Earlier this month party chairman and Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery said Labour "might be too broad a church" in a Huffington Post interview.

But he later told the Chronicle: "I never once mentioned deselection. We've got a fantastic group of MPs."

He added: "The Labour Party has been an extremely broad church. The difference between ourselves and the Tory party is we are an extremely broad church and rightly so. We encourage diverse views and opinions."

CAPTION(S):

Jeremy Corbyn and supporters

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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jul 8, 2017
Words:451
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