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Jeremy Corbyn's Labour critics have ditched ‘misgivings’ of the leader post-election - chief whip

2 min read

Labour’s chief whip has said a number of Jeremy Corbyn’s former critics within the party have told him they have changed their mind about the leader. 

Nick Brown said the successful election campaign and better-than-expected results had left colleagues expressing a “more rounded view” of the leadership.

Since taking over in 2015, Mr Corbyn has faced a leadership challenge, a string of high-profile frontbench resignations and a motion of no confidence from MPs, over his perceived inability to take Labour forward.

But the Newcastle MP said the party would now take “a dim view” on those carrying out “divisive or sectarian behaviour”.

“Many re-elected members of Parliament are coming to a more rounded view of Jeremy,” he told The Chronicle.

“Partly it’s because they have changed their opinion. And partly because of the successful election campaign and the way the manifesto has been received.

“Name another politician that can attract that sort of crowd?

“There was an energy and vigour about it that was uplifting.

“Labour people have seen that and some have overcome their misgivings.

“We really do have to stick together, and the party will take a very dim view of anyone who wants to commit divisive or sectarian behaviour.”

Mr Corbyn has faced calls from party moderates to bolster the Shadow Cabinet by calling up big names, such as Yvette Cooper and Chuka Umunna, who have expressed an openness to returning to the frontbench.  

Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth told ITV that the party should “strengthen the squad” in a bid “to turn our attention solely to taking on the Tories in the Commons”.

A more reserved Mr Corbyn, however, said at the weekend he would “draw on all the talents” in forming the frontbench, before adding: “I don’t want to break up that winning team.”

Elsewhere, Clive Efford, who chairs the party’s left-wing Tribune Group, told the Guardian: “Jeremy has got a Shadow Cabinet that remained loyal and allowed him to perform extremely well during the general election. He can’t sack those people.

"They deserve to be rewarded for what they have done. We need to get behind those people and give them all the support [we] can."

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