John McDonnell’s letter to his rivals

Dear David, Ed, Andy, Ed and Diane,

First of all good luck in the leadership contest.

I think that the entry of all of you into this election will demonstrate what dedicated and talented people we have in our party.

Now that nominations are underway I am writing to ask if you would consider the proposal that we work together to ensure that every declared candidate gets onto the ballot paper so that we have a range of candidates that truly represent the party both men and women, black and white and a range of the political views reflecting the spectrum of views of our party members.

This would mean asking members of the PLP to nominate other candidates once you have reached the 33 nominations required. Going beyond the 33 would certainly demonstrate the scale of support you have in the PLP. However, this could also mean others don’t get onto the ballot paper and prevent the full range of political views in the party being properly represented. We would also avoid any allegations that mounting up unnecessary nominations is just an act of vanity or competitive irrelevance.

I think that our members and affiliates want to be able to hear the full range of political perspectives and want to be able to choose from a full range of candidates. If the way the system works at present denies them this opportunity I believe that they will feel let down by all of us.

I would welcome your support for this approach and if necessary us all getting together this week sometime to discuss how we could work together in this way.

Please let me know if you would agree to this approach and if and when you would be available to meet.

Best wishes,


McDonnell MP

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