Danczuk’s treatment makes it open season on Labour candidates’ private lives

So Simon Danczuk is to be barred from standing in the general election and deprived of defending his Rochdale seat that he first won form the Lib Dems in 2010.

A high price to pay for being an honest critic of Jeremy Corbyn’s various shortcomings and for his ubiquity in the pages of our tabloid newspapers.

Yesterday, he faced a three-member star chamber of the National Executive Committee to answer allegations that he was involved in sexting a 17 year-old girl back in 2015.

Danczuk made no excuse for his actions. He explained to the NEC that he was going through a hard time in his personal life (for which he subsequently received counselling) and had simply made a foolish mistake.

Without rehashing details, there was no allegation of illegality and most fair-minded observers would regard it as a closed, private matter.

Labour’s NEC operates to higher moral standards, it seems.

They deemed his actions to be so deplorable that he must forfeit his political career.

But in their bid to punish a critic and (they imagine) free up a Labour seat for a Corbyn acolyte, the leadership has just made a catastrophic error.

What will the NEC now do if it is revealed a Labour MP or candidate is, say, having an extra-marital affair? Or has a cocaine habit? Or uses rent boys?

By punishing Danczuk they have just set a precedent that the sexual peccadillos of other candidates are enough to have them dumped, inadvertently announcing open season on Labour MPs’ private lives.

Gleeful researchers in Conservative Central Office will be able to weaponise tittle tattle about Labour MPs to detract attention from the ongoing police investigation into their 2015 election expenses.

Right-wing tabloids, perhaps wary of exposing MPs following the Leveson inquiry, will feel justified in bringing tales of Labour MPs’ human frailties to light.

Corbyn has just done exactly what John Major did during his ill-fated “back to basics” campaign in the early 1990s. He has invited the media to hold other Labour candidates to the same standard as Danczuk.

Many will be found wanting.

Westminster is a gossipy place and there are plenty of Labour MPs who should be panicking right about now.

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9 Responses to “Danczuk’s treatment makes it open season on Labour candidates’ private lives”

  1. Whilst I am not privvy to all the evidence, has the NCC made it more acceptable to offend whole chunks of the Jewish than to send messages to a teenager?

    Aside from anything else, this rush to judgement has made the likelihood of a hold in Rochdale more difficult. This shoukd have been dealt with outside of a General Election campaign, in my humble opinion.

  2. John P Reid says:

    Julian is right, and if danczuk being arrested yet not charged, over a row with his ex wife, then Wasn’t Jeremy arrested for something outside the South African embassy during Apartied,
    Wait till a Corbynista is parachuted in his seat

  3. Rallan says:

    //”What will the NEC now do if it is revealed a Labour MP or candidate is, say, having an extra-marital affair? Or has a cocaine habit? Or uses rent boys?”//

    Labour should allow their MPs to continue in office while using Class A illegal drugs and rent boys? No doubt Jim the washing machine salesman would agree with you. Because #LabourValues.

    You so deserve to lose.

  4. buttley says:

    “will be able to weaponise tittle tattle”

    Danczuk did exactly that, when in May 2011, he dobbed in Chris Huhne to Essex police, for a speeding offence from 2003.

  5. Tafia says:

    You cannot have a private life in PUBLIC office.

    And nor should you have.

  6. Tafia says:

    Incidentally, my wife originates from that neck of the woods (hence why I lived in Oldham and nearby Heywood for a few years a decade ago).

    She’s a working class gal, typical of working class voters in Greater Manchester in attitude and core values, votes Labour all the time or if she has a problem with their policies at the time she abstains. (she voted Leave and is abstaining in this GE because she doesn’t trust Labour to deliver but never votes against them as it’s ‘disloyal’.).

    Her comment on Danczuk? “Good. The man is a piss-head, a pervo and a wife beater. I bet the twat takes drugs as well the scum bag. He’s not fit to pick up dog shit”. If that’s her opinion then it will pretty much mirror the opinion of the ordinary Labour voters round there.

  7. Colin Moulder says:

    What about Jim the washing machine salesman? He is still an MP. Double standards. And Rochdale definitely is being lined up for a Corbyn staff member, and Rochdeale definitely will be lost to Labour this time around.

  8. How absolutely rotten of us to expect our MPs to behave in their personal lives in manner that doesn’t bring the party into disrepute. It makes Profumo seem like a saint. At least he knew what to do when caught.

  9. Ben Clay says:

    I see the author of this did not deem it politic to take credit for the article.

    For me, even if you are able to forgive the domestic violence allegations due unfortunate state of his personal life, break up of his marriage etc, the sexting is repugnant because Danczcuk made his name campaigning against Cyril Smith, and while in no way comparable, indicates misuse of power by a senior elected representative with a young woman who wanted to work for his office.

    Add in investigation for £11,000 illegal expense claims, he is not looking so good.

    The final nail in his coffin however, surely has to be his threat to stand against the party if his candidature was not endorsed. The fact that he did this knowing his case was due to be decided shows arrogance and contempt for the party name.

    Ultimately, it is the Labour name that gives people their opportunity to win a seat in the house of commons, and although MP’s from right across the party work very hard and have considerable talent to get where they are, they are deluding themselves if they believe their personal contribution in any way approaches the institutional strength of the Labour name, most importantly, he has lost the respect of many in his CLP and that is why he must go.

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