The decision by the Labour Party National Constitutional Committee (NCC) on Tuesday to suspend rather than expel Ken Livingstone has been criticized by many Labour politicians.
An open letter describing the decision as a “betrayal” of the party’s values has been signed by 107 MPs (nearly half of the party’s representatives in the House of Commons) and nearly 50 Labour members of the House of Lords. The letter was issued by the Jewish Labour Movement and expresses their “sense of disgust and frustration.”
The letter states:
“Livingstone’s comments betray a party that was founded on the values of equality and inclusivity. His history of inflammatory remarks against our community … surely have no place in a progressive party.
“The decision to allow him to remain a member presents us with an immediate dilemma about our future in the party. Despite pledges of ‘zero tolerance’ on anti-Semitism, Labour has been found wanting when it truly mattered.
“The Jewish community has a proud history with Labour, but this decision has thrown its future into jeopardy.”
Signatories to the letter include eight shadow Cabinet ministers, including shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner; Barry Gardiner, the shadow environment secretary; and Nia Griffith, the shadow defence secretary.