Labour suffers ‘worst ever’ poll ratings as Jeremy Corbyn celebrates one year as leader


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Theresa May has led Eid Mubarak greetings from the political world by releasing a video on Twitter.

PM: To all Muslims, in this country & around the world, I want to say Eid Mubarak. I wish you a happy & peaceful Eid

 Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, also had this greeting:

From my family to yours. Eid Mubarak to Muslims in London and around the world #Eid

Jeremy Corbyn is marking a year as Labour leader. Here we look back on his tumultuous 12 months in charge:

:: September 12 2015 – Having started the contest as a rank outsider who barely scraped on to the ballot paper, Mr Corbyn crushes his opponents in a landslide win to become the Labour leader. He wins almost 60% of votes, including nearly half of those cast by party members. He makes long-time left-wing ally John McDonnell shadow chancellor in one of a number of controversial appointments.

:: September 15 – The republican faces criticism for not singing the national anthem at his first ceremonial engagement, a Battle of Britain commemoration service. He says he loves Britain and will “play a full part” at future events.

:: September 29 – He uses his first party conference speech to promise “a kinder politics, a more caring society” and urges the party to unite to take on Tory “misery”. But he stumbles over the autocue, reading out the instruction “strong message here”, and it later emerges parts of the speech were written by author Richard Heller and offered to every Labour leader since Neil Kinnock.

:: September 30 – Mr Corbyn says he would never launch a nuclear strike if he was prime minister.

:: October 8 – He turns down a first opportunity to be sworn in to the Privy Council amid speculation over whether he would kneel before the Queen or kiss her hand. He cites a “prior engagement” revealed to be a walking holiday in Scotland.

:: October 20 – He dons white tie and tails to attend a state banquet at Buckingham Palace in aid of Chinese president Xi Jinping.

:: November 12 – Mr Corbyn is sworn in as a privy counsellor. He is believed not to have been required to kneel before the Queen or kiss her hand.

:: November 13 – He says it would have been “far better” if the British Islamic State terrorist known as Jihadi John had been put on trial not killed in a drone strike.

:: November 17 – He is forced to clarify comments after the Paris attacks that he is “not happy” with UK police operating a “shoot to kill” policy. He says he would support “strictly necessary force” in the event of a terror attack.

:: December 2 – Some 66 Labour MPs – including 11 from the shadow cabinet – vote in favour of air strikes against IS in Syria despite the leader’s implacable resistance. The party splits are starkly illustrated by shadow foreign secretary Hilary Benn making a widely lauded speech from the despatch box in favour, causing a lasting rift with Mr Corbyn.

:: December 3 – Labour scores a comfortable win in the Oldham by-election triggered by Michael Meacher’s death. A predicted threat from Ukip fails to materialise, with local council leader Jim McMahon securing 62.1% of the vote.

:: December 11 – Mr Corbyn defies critics by attending a fundraising dinner organised by the Stop The War Coalition despite criticism of its controversial statements about terrorism and air strikes on Syria. Mr Corbyn, who chaired the movement before becoming party leader, calls it a “vital force at the heart of our democracy”.

:: January 4 2016 – The Labour leader embarks on a lengthy reshuffle, sacking Pat McFadden as Europe spokesman, triggering the resignations of Kevan Jones, Jonathan Reynolds and Stephen Doughty – who quit live on air – in protest.

:: March 21 – The Government drops plans for cuts to Personal Independence Payments after the resignation of Iain Duncan Smith. Mr Corbyn will later claim the U-turn as a Labour victory but comes under fire for failing to mention Mr Duncan Smith’s resignation during his Commons clash with Mr Cameron.

:: May 6 – Sadiq Khan is elected as Labour mayor of London, Marvin Rees wins in Bristol and Labour avoids complete catastrophe in the English local elections. But Mr Corbyn becomes the first opposition leader for 50 years to lose council seats in his first local elections and Labour is hammered in Scotland, being replaced by the Tories as the main opposition party.

:: June 11 – Amid concerns from some in the Remain camp that Mr Corbyn is not doing enough to mobilise support to keep the UK in the European Union, the Labour leader appears on Channel 4’s The Last Leg. He says he is “not a huge fan” of the EU but was 70%-75% in favour of staying.

:: June 16 – Labour MP Jo Cox is killed. Mr Corbyn describes her as “a much-loved colleague, a real talent and a dedicated campaigner for social justice and peace”.

:: June 24 – As the UK votes for Brexit, Mr Corbyn is urged by figures including Labour MP Angela Smith and former cabinet minister Lord Mandelson to consider his position over his “half-hearted” campaign for Remain. He insists he will be carrying on and “making the case for unity”.

:: June 26 – Eleven members of the shadow cabinet quit following the dismissal of Mr Benn as shadow foreign secretary in a late-night phone-call. Dozens more frontbenchers resign over the next few days.

:: June 28 – Mr Corbyn loses a confidence vote of Labour MPs by 172-40, but insists he will not “betray” his supporters by resigning.

:: June 29 – At Prime Minister’s Questions in the Commons, Mr Cameron tells Mr Corbyn: “For heaven’s sake man, go.”

:: June 30 – At the launch of a report into allegations of anti-Semitism in Labour ranks, Mr Corbyn’s troubles deepen after MP Ruth Smeeth accuses him of creating a party that is “not a safe space for British Jews” and his own comments apparently comparing Israel with Islamic State are attacked by the Chief Rabbi.

:: July 11 – Angela Eagle formally launches a bid to topple Mr Corbyn, saying she can make Labour electable again after the “howl of pain” expressed in the Brexit vote. Two days later Owen Smith enters the race.

:: July 19 – Ms Eagle withdraws from the contest and gives her support to Mr Smith.

:: August 11 – Mr Corbyn films a message while sat on the floor of a Virgin Trains carriage, complaining about the “ram-packed” service.

:: August 23 – He becomes embroiled in a row with Virgin tycoon Sir Richard Branson as the train company releases CCTV footage of Mr Corbyn walking past empty seats before being filmed on the floor. Mr Corbyn later said he was unable to find two seats together so he could sit next to his wife.

:: September 6 – Labour MPs and peers back proposals to restore elections to select the shadow cabinet in a move viewed as a fresh blow to Mr Corbyn’s authority.

Jose Manuel Barroso will be the first former European Commission president to have his “red carpet privileges” stripped on visits to Brussels as scrutiny deepens into his appointment to a top post at Goldman Sachs.

As a former commission chief he would normally have received VIP treatment from EU leaders in Brussels, where he held his position for a decade in which Europe was gripped by the financial crisis.

French president Francois Hollande labelled Barroso’s appointment at the bank as “legally possible but morally unacceptable”.

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady called for Labour to unite behind the winning candidate.

“As soon as the contest is over, we are saying get behind whoever the leader is, get united. But start focusing on people out in the country.

“Voters want to get a bit more attention, it can’t just be about the rights of MPs, or the rights of members, I think Labour needs to start focusing on what voters want,” she told BBC Radio Four’s Today programme.

A prominent Labour donor was suspended by the party over the weekend after writing a newspaper article in which he appeared to compare Jeremy Corbyn’s allies to Hitler’s stormtroopers.

It follows accusations that Mr Corbyn has failed to do enough to tackle abuse and allegations of anti-Semitism within the party.

Michael Foster told The World This Weekend that Labour was using “badly drawn, widely written rules to purge from the party people that do not toe the hard Left line”.

He also stressed he did not use the word “Nazi” and that it been added to the headline of his article in the Mail on Sunday. 

John McDonnell, the Shadow Chancellor, told the same programme that the way the rules were being enforced breached “natural justice”.

But the major donor accused him of being “sly” given that Mr McDonnell had previously called for his suspension. 

Owen Smith would consider applying for Britain to rejoin the EU post-Brexit if he became Prime Minister.

The Labour leadership contender even suggested he could sign Britain up to the euro and the open borders Schengen zone.

For those who recoil at the very thought, luckily he is a massive 24 points behind his rival and Mr Corbyn is still the favourite to win the Labour leadership contest.

Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour is suffering the worst opinion poll ratings the party has ever experienced in opposition, according to the latest figures released on the first anniversary of his election as leader. 

Labour is trailing the Conservatives by an average of 11 points, in the worst result for a leader since modern polling began in the 1950s.

It came as John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, admitted he and Mr Corbyn needed to “improve” their “act” and vowed to listen to their critics. 

When Tony Blair reached his first anniversary as leader in 1995, Labour was ahead of the Conservatives by an average of 26 points.

The figures from the Nuffield series of British General Election studies revealed a party leader has never suffered from such poor ratings 12 months into their premiership. 

Mr McDonnell told Pienaar’s Politics on BBC Radio 5 Live: “I’ve got to improve my act as well, I recognise that and I want to look at what criticisms there are that have been made about how I operate. Jeremy is exactly the same mental position.

“If Jeremy is re-elected – and I don’t count my chickens before they’re hatched – if he is what we’ll be saying to people is, ‘Right, what do you think has hit those poll ratings?’ because actually we were virtually level or in advance of the Tories before the coup occurred and let’s iron out what those problems are.”

News Source TelegraphNews

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