by Kevin Meagher
Is Jeremy Corbyn a racist?
It’s a strange and unfamiliar accusation against a politician who has spent his entire adult life on one anti-racist march or another.
Israel aside, Corbyn is the bleeding heart’s bleeding heart.
The allegation of racial discrimination against him comes from a serving Labour frontbencher, Chi Onwurah.
Writing in the New Statesman earlier this week, she complained about the way her brief as shadow minister for culture and the digital economy (nope, me neither) had been split between her and another Labour MP, Thangam Debonnaire, without telling either of them:
‘If this had been any of my previous employers in the public and private sectors Jeremy might well have found himself before an industrial tribunal for constructive dismissal, probably with racial discrimination thrown in – given that only five per cent of MPs are black and female, picking on us two is statistically interesting to say the least.’
‘In any other job I would have called on my union for support in confronting an all-white management which prevented two of its few black employees from doing their jobs. I would have expected the Leader of the Labour Party to condemn such ineffectual management which allowed such abuse.’
The accusation is a new low in the war of attrition between the Parliamentary Labour Party and their leader. Corbyn may be many things and not be many things, but he is no racist and the slur is contemptible.
It’s also a doomed attempt to ‘swift boat’ Corbyn on an issue he has made his own.