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Sat, 4 April 2020

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By Dods General Election Hub 2019

Rosena Allin-Khan and Ian Murray enter race to become Labour's deputy leader

Rosena Allin-Khan and Ian Murray enter race to become Labour's deputy leader
3 min read

Rosena Allin-Khan and Ian Murray have become the latest Labour MPs to enter the contest to become the party's deputy leader.

Tooting MP Ms Allin-Khan said the next leadership team needed to "restore trust in the Labour Party", while Mr Murray - Labour's only remaining Scottish MP - took a veiled swipe at Jeremy Corbyn and warned the party not to become "a protest movement of the past".

The announcements came as the race to succeed Mr Corbyn as Labour leader and Tom Watson as his deputy formally began.

The pair will square off against Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner, Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Burgon, Shadow Equalities Secretary Dawn Butler and Shadow Europe minister Khalid Mahmood.

Ms Allin-Khan, a qualified accident and emergency doctor, urged Labour not to ignore the message sent by the electorate, calling on Labour to "listen to their symptoms and investigate the root causes".

Setting out her stall for the second-in-command job, the Shadow Sports Minister said: "I want the Labour Party to be in government again to afford the current generation the hope that was offered to me."

The Tooting MP added: "It is vital that we restore trust in the Labour Party across the country. It is clear that people did not trust us - we need to accept this fact, evaluate it, and learn from it in order to move forward. We cannot put words into people’s mouths. Our path back to power involves listening with humility to those former Labour voters who have abandoned the party.

"I believe my life experience means I can help our movement do this. As a doctor, I cannot guess or assume what is wrong with a patient - I have to listen to their symptoms and investigate the root causes - this is what we must do as a party, and is what I will do as deputy leader."

Ms Allin-Khan's team - who have chosen to flag her medical experience as 'Doctor Rosena' in the candidate's campaign logo - said she would focus her campaign on those "from every race, region and background who have been so badly let down" by the party.


Meanwhile Mr Murray, who was re-elected as MP for Edinburgh South in an election which saw Labour lose all other Commons representatives in Scotland, called on the party to set itself firmly against Scottish independence.

"On the major constitutional issues of our time – Scottish independence and Brexit – we must be clear with people where we stand," he wrote in The Mirror.

"We should always be a pro-EU and pro-UK party because it is not just in the national interest, but part of our values.”

And he urged Labour to "answer the big questions" affecting voters' lives, including the rise of automation, an ageing population and the climate crisis.

"Time after time I have said we need to learn the lessons from election defeats - and I'm fed up saying it," he wrote.

"The Labour Party must change so that people across the country can trust us once again."

Mr Murray added: "Looking to the past will only prolong our years in the wilderness and put our country at risk.

"We must become a credible alternative government of the future, not a protest movement of the past.

"That’s how we lift millions of children, families, and pensioners out of poverty again."

Labour's new leader and deputy leader will be unveiled on 4 April under a timetable signed off by party bosses on Monday night. 

The post of deputy has been vacant since Tom Watson stepped down as an MP ahead of the election.

Read the most recent article written by Matt Honeycombe-Foster - UK’s COP26 climate summit shelved for a year amid coronavirus outbreak


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