Labour conference 2021 – live: Starmer admits ‘huge disagreements’ with Rayner as bakers’ union leaves party

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·29 min read
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Keir Starmer has admitted to having “huge disagreements” with his deputy Angela Rayner, three days after she called the Conservatives “scum”.

Speaking at the party conference on Saturday, Ms Rayner described the Tories as “homophobic, racist, misogynist...scum”. She later refused to apologise for the comments.

The Labour leader has sought to distance himself from her remarks. He told Sky News that he would not have used such language, before saying the pair have “huge agreements and disagreements”.

Meanwhile, the bakers’ union has decided to split from the party after working with it for almost 120 years.

Explaining the decision, the Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union blamed Mr Starmer, citing “a factional internal war led by the leadership”.

“The decision taken by delegates who predominantly live in what’s regarded as Labour red wall seats shows how far the Labour party has travelled away from the aims and hopes of working class organisations like ours,” it said in a statement.

This comes the day after Andy McDonald, a friend of Jeremy Corbyn, resigned from the shadow cabinet over Mr Starmer’s refusal to support raising the minimum wage to £15 per hour.

Read More

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Critics of Angela Rayner ‘scum’ comments should stay off ‘moral high horse’, John Bercow says

Key Points

  • Starmer admits having ‘huge disagreements’ with Rayner

  • Bakers’ union splits from Labour after more than a century

  • Starmer filmed saying £15 wage ‘should be the norm'

  • Labour will never ‘defund the police'

  • Tories ‘soft on crime’ says shadow home secretary

  • Corbyn says Starmer in it for the rich and powerful

  • Sadiq Khan needs 24/7 protection due to ‘colour of his skin’

  • McDonald resignation looks like ‘planned sabotage'

McDonald resignation looks like ‘planned sabotage'

10:14 , Liam James

A frontbencher has suggested the resignation of Ian McDonald over the £15 minimum wage row was aimed to sabotage Sir Keir Starmer’s first in-person party conference.

Asked about the departure on the BBC, Ian Murray, shadow Scottish secretary, said: “We're not quite sure why he resigned yesterday, he seems to have said one thing and written another.

“That looks as if it might be a planned sabotage of conference, rather than it being about any principle.”

He added: “This was a policy, don't forget, that Andy McDonald and the shadow cabinet wrote, he put through shadow cabinet and he launched with much acclaim in the conference hall 48 hours before he resigned.

“We're not quite sure why he resigned, but these things happen in politics and we're all very angry and frustrated that the headlines are being dominated by one person when we should be talking about the big issues of the future.”

Recap of last night’s resignation

10:21 , Liam James

Catch up on last night’s resignation row with Jon Stone’s coverage:

Labour frontbencher quits after Keir Starmer orders him to oppose higher minimum wage

Starmer showed support for £15 minimum wage in past

10:37 , Liam James

Sir Keir Starmer faces pressure over previous comments seemingly supporting a £15 minimum wage.

Andy McDonald last night resigned saying the Labour leader’s office told him to argue against bringing the minimum wage to £15.

Sir Keir shared a photo of himself on Twitter marching with McDonald’s workers for a £15 hourly wage during the 2019 election campaign.

At the time, he said: “They’re asking for the basics – £15 an hour, the right to know their hours in advance and to have trade union recognition. That ought to be the norm in 21st Century Britain.”

Labour invokes Tony Blair with ‘tough on crime’ and anti-social behaviour push

10:56 , Liam James

Labour is to invoke Tony Blair’s “tough on crime” message and promise a crackdown on antisocial behaviour if it is elected, writes Jon Stone.

In a speech to the party’s conference, Nick Thomas-Symonds, the shadow home secretary, will accuse the Tories of being “soft on crime and soft on causes on crime”.

The comments are a knowing reference to Mr Blair’s claim New Labour would be “tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime”.

The slogan was coined by Mr Blair when he was shadow Home Secretary in 1993, and kept on when he took over the party leadership.

More on the party’s proposals here:

Labour invokes Tony Blair with ‘tough on crime’ and anti-social behaviour push

Diane Abbott: ‘Nonsense’ to say resignation was sabotage

11:13 , Liam James

Diane Abbott, who was shadow home secretary for Jeremy Corbyn, said it was “nonsense” to suggest Andy McDonald resigned to sabotage the Labour conference.

“Andy McDonald is not like that at all,” the Hackney North MP told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

“It is a fact though that Keir Starmer supported £15 an hour until recently, and he's been on protest demanding it.

“So it's quite strange that he was so insistent that Andy McDonald argue with conference delegates for just £10 an hour.”

She added: “A lot of constituency delegates support £15 an hour. It’s the very least.”

Thomas-Symonds says Starmer was ‘showing solidarity’ in £15 wage photos

11:22 , Liam James

Asked about photos of Sir Keir Starmer seemingly supporting a £15 minimum wage, Nick Thomas-Symonds, shadow home secretary, said the Labour leader had been “showing solidarity with those workers who were seeking to fight for it”.

He told LBC on the minimum wage that “what we will look at is the particular economic circumstances and make sure we offer something we can deliver”.

20 delegates banned from Labour conference

11:37 , Liam James

Labour banned 20 delegates from its party conference for disciplinary reasons, the chair of the party constitutional arrangements committee revealed this morning.

Harry Donaldson said no constituency party had been disenfranchised by the bannings. In one case, he said, the sole delegate of a constituency was banned and a replacement was found.

Corbyn column says Starmer wants to ‘prop up the rich and powerful’

11:53 , Liam James

Writing in the i today, Jeremy Corbyn attacked the stance of the Labour party under Sir Keir Starmer.

He said Sir Keir and his team had shown “they want to prop up, not challenge” the “wealth and power of the few”.

Here follow a few excerpts:

“This year we meet at a time of great change and crisis, perhaps larger than any other time in my 50-plus years of party membership. ... The Tories have no solutions. There is a positive alternative, a common-sense programme that Labour could offer. But that road ahead does not run through attacking the energy and ideas of our members and trade unions.”

“We need public ownership of our energy system if we’re going to manage it effectively, keep bills down and rapidly decarbonise.”

“All over the world people are thirsting for massive social change – we should be part of that global movement, not apart from it.

If our leadership won’t champion that path, our movement must and will.”

MP who quit Labour over antisemitism rejoins party

12:07 , Liam James

Dame Louise Ellman, a former Labour MP who quit in 2019 over antisemitism, met Sir Keir Starmer today after rejoining the party.

She said Labour was now being led by someone in whom “Britain's Jews can have trust”.

The pair had a coffee at the Hilton hotel in Brighton this morning (PA)
The pair had a coffee at the Hilton hotel in Brighton this morning (PA)

Starmer filmed saying £15 wage ‘should be the norm'

12:21 , Liam James

Taken during the McDonald’s workers and Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union protest in November 2019.

Labour would end tax breaks for private schools, shadow education secretary confirms

12:44 , Rory Sullivan

Labour has pledged to stop tax breaks for private schools and to give more education recovery funds to schools in the state sector.

Addressing delegates in Brighton, shadow education secretary Kate Green declared the party’s commitment to the “children’s recovery plan”, including breakfast clubs and more small group tutoring.

“We must go further to give every young person a brighter future. That’s why Labour will end tax breaks for private schools as Keir announced at the weekend, and use that funding to equip young people with the skills they need for work and for life,” she said.

“That’s my guarantee and how the next Labour government will make Britain the best place to grow up.”

Tories are ‘punching down’ on struggling families, says Labour

12:55 , Rory Sullivan

The Tory government is not levelling up the country but is instead “punching down” on struggling families, the shadow minister for child poverty has said.

Labour MP Wes Streeting attacked Boris Johnson’s imminent cut to universal credit, saying it would result in 200,000 children falling into poverty.

“This isn’t a government that’s ‘levelling up’, it’s punching down on struggling mums and dads and their kids,” he said.

The Ilford North MP, who “experienced poverty first-hand” during his childhood, claimed the government had no “ambition” to end child poverty.

“A poverty of ambition for other people’s kids that they would never tolerate for their own,” he suggested.

He added that Labour would invest “in success” and would spend money on tackling the root causes of poverty, rather than just the symptoms.

Corbyn could stand as independent MP at next election

13:00 , Jon Stone

Jeremy Corbyn has declined to rule out standing for election as an independent MP at the next general election.

Speaking at a fringe event at Labour conference the former party leader was asked whether he could stand against Labour and answered that he did not want to discuss “hypotheticals”.

Mr Corbyn said he should be readmitted to the parliamentary party, telling a packed room of supporters: “There is no case other than I should be reinstated on the Labour whip”.

The Islington North MP is a Labour member but was kicked out of the party’s parliamentary group by Keir Starmer after a row about his response to a report into antisemitism under his leadership.

He was originally suspended from the party entirely but reinstated by the party’s national executive committee following an investigation and clarification.

But following a backlash Sir Keir clarified that Mr Corbyn would not be allowed back into the party’s group of MPs – leaving him an independent MP but Labour member.

Asked whether he could stand again if he was not selected as a Labour candidate Mr Corbyn replied: “Let’s not get into hypotheticals here.”

Senior party figures such as former Unite general secretary Len McCluskey have said Sir Keir made and then subsequently reneged on a deal to readmit the left-winger.

Corbyn says McDonald’s resignation not part of anti-Starmer plot

13:18 , Rory Sullivan

Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has denied that Andy McDonald’s resignation from the shadow cabinet on Monday was part of an anti-Starmer plot.

Mr McDonald resigned from his role as shadow employment rights and protections secretary, after Keir Starmer’s team allegedly told him to argue against the introduction of a £15 minimum wage.

Mr Corbyn admitted having several conversations with Mr McDonald yesterday, but insisted he was only there to support his friend “in whatever decision he decided to make”.

He also denied that the move was deliberately timed, saying: “If it had been a deep-laid Machiavellian plot to announce a resignation on a particular afternoon in Brighton, it would’ve leaked out weeks ago.”

Labour criticises government over NHS record

13:36 , Rory Sullivan

Shadow health secretary Jon Ashworth has blamed the government for the current NHS crisis, during which people are having to crowdfund to have operations performed privately.

Speaking in Brighton, the Labour frontbencher said those “in pain and desperation” sought funds for private treatment because the NHS waiting times were too long.

He added that a hip replacement costs £12,000 and a knee operation is £9,000.

While acknowledging that the NHS has been severely affected by the pandemic, he stressed that 10 years of Tory rule had weakened it beforehand.

“We entered the pandemic with the longest financial squeeze in NHS history,” he said, citing that 17,000 beds had closed and that GP numbers were down.

“So, the NHS is in crisis not simply because of Covid, the NHS is in crisis because of the Conservatives.”

Labour delegate ‘transphobically abused’ at conference

13:49 , Liam James

Cries of “shame” were heard in the Labour Party conference hall after one delegate said she suffered transphobic abuse in the centre from a fellow delegate.

Patricia Hannah-Wood, a councillor of Pendle Labour Party, said: “On Sunday evening ... I was in the loo downstairs with a few of my colleagues from the northwest when I was transphobically abused in this conference centre by one of our sisters in this conference hall now.

“It should not happen, we have got an anti-bigotry and anti-bullying policy in the Labour Party. We need it to be enforced.”

Labour ‘more united’ than people think

14:07 , Liam James

Jonathan Ashworth said the Labour Party was “more united” than people think, after Andy McDonald resigned from the front bench.

The shadow health secretary told BBC Radio 4's World at One he was “sorry that Andy has resigned” and added he could “see why he is frustrated” because “something in his policy area” had not been adopted.

He added: “I have seen the Labour Party more divided than this”, and confirmed that this was under Jeremy Corbyn.

Mr Ashworth said: “There was waves of shadow ministerial resignations and you know what - with no disrespect to various colleagues who resigned from the front bench - I think they thought it would create a political earthquake and it didn't.

“Resignations don't always have the impact which - with respect to our colleagues - they think they are going to have.”

‘People will die’ unless health and care workers prioritised for petrol, Labour warns

14:18 , Liam James

Labour has called for health workers to be given priority for petrol.

Jonathan Ashworth, the shadow health secretary, said patients could die if doctors, nurses and other hospital workers were delayed or unable to get to work due to queues at petrol stations.

‘People will die’ unless health and care workers prioritised for petrol, Labour warns

NHS being privatised ‘by the backdoor’, says Labour

14:29 , Liam James

Jonathan Ashworth said the government was creating a “two-tier health system” as people take out loans and crowdfund to pay for private operations to beat the NHS backlog.

“A two-tier health system, privatisation by the backdoor. That’s the Tory threat to our NHS. That’s what we’re fighting and that’s why we’ll rebuild our NHS in every community across the land,” he said.

‘Build back better’ just ‘blah blah blah’ to Greta Thunberg

14:44 , Liam James

Greta Thunberg jibed at Boris Johnson’s climate rhetoric as she addressed the Youth4Climate summit in Milan.

She used soundbites from speeches by the prime minister such as “build back better” before dismissing them as “blah, blah, blah”, to applause from the crowd.

“This is all we hear from our so-called leaders. Words that sound great, but so far have led to no action,” she said.

‘Bring back neighbourhood policing’: Shadow home secretary pledge at Labour conference

14:58 , Liam James

A Labour government would “bring back neighbourhood policing”, Nick Thomas-Symonds, the shadow home secretary, said in his Labour conference speech.

The Police Federation welcomed the pledge. John Apter, the federation’s chair, said reducing neighbourhood policing was a tough decision that had to be made due to austerity.

Mr Thomas-Symonds said Labour would also introduce new laws targeting domestic abusers and county lines drugs gangs.

Tories ‘soft on crime’ and Priti Patel ‘never delivers'

15:16 , Liam James

Nick Thomas-Symonds turned a Blair-era phrase around to attack the Tories in his conference speech.

New Labour pledged to be “tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime”. Today’s Conservatives, the shadow home secretary said, were “soft on crime and soft on the causes of crime”.

He lambasted Priti Patel’s record as home secretary, saying she “likes to talks tough but she never delivers.

“She says she backs our frontline police officers and staff but then insults them with a pay freeze.

“It's no surprise that she has lost the confidence of 130,000 rank-and-file officers represented by the Police Federation, who are the undisputed voice of policing.

Sadiq Khan needs 24/7 protection due to ‘colour of his skin’

15:29 , Liam James

The mayor of London said he needs 24/7 protection due to his faith and ethnic background.

Sadiq Khan said he at first denied the offer of police protection when elected in 2016 but changed his mind when officers said those close to him could be at risk.

He said 51 police officers on a team protect him “around the clock” and he revealed his staff had been offered counselling to deal with the “vitriol” that was levelled at him.

Mr Khan said he was inspired to speak openly about his protection and the reasons for it by footballers who pushed back against racist abuse.

He said: “I'm not going to allow these racists and these Islamophobes to intimidate me, and I'll never bow to them.

“The mayor of the greatest city in the world needs protection 24 hours a day, seven days a week because of the colour of his skin and the god he worships, that can't be right.”

Labour promises ‘biggest ever’ strategy to improve child health

15:43 , Liam James

Shaun Lintern, health correspondent, goes over the key healthcare pledges from the Labour conference:

Labour promises ‘biggest ever’ strategy to improve child health

Labour will never ‘defund the police'

15:53 , Liam James

A Labour government would never “defund the police”, the shadow home secretary said.

Black Lives Matter protesters have called for money to be taken from the police and invested in community programmes, education and mental health care.

They said diverting funding would make society safer.

But Nick Thomas-Symonds today said: “No Labour home secretary will ever defund the police.

“That’s not our party, that’s the Tory party, and they have spent 10 years defunding our police.”

The shadow home secretary used his conference speech to present Labour as the party of law and order.

Fuel shortages: HGV drivers saw issue coming years ago and ‘worst still to come’

16:09 , Liam James

Lorry drivers spoke to Thomas Kingsley about the industry’s troubles.

Christmas will be difficult, by their estimates:

Fuel shortages: HGV drivers saw issue coming years ago and ‘worst still to come’

Bakers’ union splits from Labour after more than a century

16:25 , Liam James

A union has voted to disaffiliate itself from the Labour party due to Sir Keir Starmer’s leadership.

The Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union announced members had voted for the move due to “a factional internal war led by the leadership”.

“The decision taken by delegates who predominantly live in what’s regarded as Labour red wall seats shows how far the Labour party has travelled away from the aims and hopes of working class organisations like ours,” the union said in a statement.

The BFAWU has worked with the Labour party since 1902, not long after the latter’s founding.

Labour unveils plan forcing law firms to provide free legal help or lose government contracts

16:40 , Liam James

Labour would deny law firms access to government contracts unless they meet a new target for free legal services, the party has announced.

Firms would need to provide at least 35 hours pro bono work per lawyer per year to qualify, David Lammy, the shadow justice secretary, is expected to say in his conference speech.

Adam Forrest has more on this:

Labour would force law firms to provide free help or lose government contracts

People are postponing having children due to rising living costs, says Labour

16:55 , Rory Sullivan

The rising costs of living mean only the well-off can have children at the age they want, Labour’s chairwoman has said.

Anneliese Dodds said others were putting up starting a family because of the higher prices seen under the Tory government.

“There is evidence that quite a lot of people are putting off ‘settling down’ because of cost pressures,” she said in Brighton.

“That is a phenomenon that is really quite disturbing if we think through the implications of it, that actually it’s only those better-off people who would be able to have either a family at the age that they would want to have it at or the number of children that they themselves would want to have,” she added.

Labour to prioritise ending violence against women, says shadow justice secretary

17:05 , Rory Sullivan

Labour will act to end violence against women and girls, the shadow justice secretary has said.

David Lammy told delegates in Brighton that the Conservative government was not doing enough to to ensure the safety of women and girls.

“Enough is enough. Women have to feel safe on our streets. Labour is putting ending violence against women and girls at the very top of our agenda,” he said.

His words follow the murder of 28-year-old Sabina Nessa, who was killed in south-east London this month while walking to the pub to see a friend.

Starmer accuses government of reducing country to ‘chaos’ amid fuel crisis

17:16 , Rory Sullivan

The government has reduced Britain to “chaos” by not tackling the fuel crisis effectively, Keir Starmer has said.

The Labour leader said the haulage industry was “beyond frustated” by the lack of meaningful action, adding that the prime minister should give key workers priority access to petrol.

Speaking in Brighton, he told the BBC: “The government has reduced the country to chaos as we track from crisis to crisis and the government is not gripping this.

“I spoke to the haulage sector this morning, to the businesses that are absolutely in the middle of this, and they are beyond frustrated.

“They said it’s a government that is denying there’s a problem, then blaming somebody else, and then coming up with a half-baked plan.”

PM says fuel supplies ‘are coming back’

17:27 , Rory Sullivan

Turning away from the Labour conference momentarily, Boris Johnson has been on television claiming that “supplies are coming back” onto petrol station forecourts “in the normal way”.

What exactly does this mean? A government source says 16 per cent of petrol stations are being supplied normally, up from 10 per cent the last time we had figures.

This is clearly still a low level, but if true it is the right direction of travel. The government is keen to dampen any panic-buying.

Starmer admits having ‘huge disagreements’ with Rayner

17:40 , Rory Sullivan

Labour leader Keir Starmer has admitted having “huge disagreements” with his deputy Angela Rayner, after she described Tories as “scum” at the party conference.

“It’s not language I would have used,” he told Sky News. “Angela and I talk every day. Of course we have huge agreements and disagreements.”

He added that he had spoken to Ms Rayner about the insult, but refused to disclose the content of their conversation.

My colleague Adam Forrest has this report:

Keir Starmer says he has ‘huge disagreements’ with Angela Rayner

Labour delegates support £15-an-hour minimum wage

18:03 , Rory Sullivan

Labour delegates have backed a Unite motion demanding that the minimum wage be increased to £15 per hour.

Keir Starmer, who said he would not support the policy, is in favour of raising the total to £10.

The vote came the day after Andy McDonald resigned from the shadow cabinet, citing disagreements over the minimum wage as the reason for his decision.

Winning more important than party unity, says Starmer

18:16 , Rory Sullivan

Keir Starmer has said that winning elections is more important than party unity.

He told the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg: “I didn’t come into politics to vote over and over again in Parliament and lose and then tweet about it. I came into politics to go into government.”

He stressed that winning the next election should be the “central focus” of every Labour party member and supporter.

Starmer will not reinstate Corbyn as party whip

18:34 , Eleanor Sly

Keir Starmer has refused to reinstate the Labour party whip to Mr Corbyn until he apologises for his controversial remarks which were made in response to a report on antisemitism within the party.

Allies of Mr Corbyn have said that reinstating the whip to the former leader is a key move for reuniting the party but Sir Keir had other ideas.

The leader of the Labour party said that Mr Corbyn, who has been an independent MP since October, cannot return to the party until after he apologises for saying antisemitism had been “drastically overstated for political reasons.”

The comment was made in response to a damning report made into the issue when Mr Corbyn was leading the party.

Keir Starmer on changes: ‘there will be some people who don’t agree’

18:50 , Eleanor Sly

Sir Keir Starmer has denied claims that he was happy to see Andy McDonald leave the party and has insisted that Mr McDonald was incorrect to claim “our movement is more divided than ever.”

Speaking to BBC News in Brighton, Sir Keir explained: “He is wrong about that, but my focus is on how we get Labour into position to win a general election.”

He went on to defend the “tough decisions to change our party” while accepting “there will be some people who don’t agree with those changes” and urging critics to “abide by them.”

These changes include altering the rules to mean that future leadership contenders would need greater support from Labour MPs, a move which has been seen as an attempt to curb radical challengers.

Starmer critics latch onto McDonalds photo

19:05 , Eleanor Sly

Members of the Labour party have been criticising Keir Starmer for opposing a £15 national minimum wage, having previously been seen out backing a £15 an hour pay for those working in McDonalds.

Diane Abbott, the former shadow home secretary posted this on Twitter:

Stop panic-buying petrol and only fill up ‘when you really need it’, Boris Johnson tells public

19:20 , Eleanor Sly

Boris Johnson has broken his silence on the petrol crisis by urging the public to stop panic-buying and only fill up their cars “when you really need it”.

The prime minister denied the country is in “crisis” – insisting the fuel shortages were just a consequence of “huge global demand”, as the world recovers from the Covid pandemic.

And he said: “I would really just urge everybody to go about their business in the normal way and fill up in the normal way, when you really need it.”

Rob Merrick reports:

Stop panic-buying petrol and only fill up ‘when you really need it’, Johnson says

Labour government needs to stop ‘epidemic’ of violence towards women

19:35 , Eleanor Sly

Any future Labour government in Downing Street must do “everything within government powers” to put a stop to the “epidemic” of violence against women and girls, party members have urged.

Members of the party backed an emergency motion, pressing a future Labour government to end the crisis as a “matter of priority”.

Eve Rose-Keenan received a standing ovation following her speech during a debate in Brighton, in which she told party members how she previously gave evidence against someone who had abused her as a child.

The Rotherham Labour Party member said: “I want to say to my wonderful daughter: things will change for you and I want to deliver a Labour government that will make things better for all women and girls.”

McDonald welcomes minimum wage motion result

19:35 , Rory Sullivan

Andy McDonald, who resigned from the shadow cabinet yesterday, has said he is “overjoyed” that a motion supporting a £15-an-hour minimum wage passed unanimously at the Labour conference.

In a shot at leader Keir Starmer, he said that the Labour leadership should pursue the policy if it “respects party democracy”.

‘We’ve been locked out’: Covid bereaved families meet with Boris Johnson after 400 days

19:50 , Eleanor Sly

Boris Johnson has finally met with Covid bereaved families more than a year after promising to come face to face with those impacted by the pandemic.

The PM hosted the private meeting with representatives of the Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice group on Tuesday afternoon at No 10.

In a meeting which lasted just over an hour and took place outside at the request of the families, five people shared how their loved ones caught the virus and died.

Joe Middleton and Holly Bancroft have more:

‘We’ve been locked out’: Covid families meet with Boris Johnson after 400 days

Starmer refuses to say whether he’s more like Blair or Corbyn

20:02 , Rory Sullivan

Keir Starmer has asked people to stop comparing him to former Labour leaders, while encouraging them to listen to his shadow cabinet’s proposals instead.

The Labour leader made the remark when asked by ITV News if he was more like Tony Blair or Jeremy Corbyn.

“I’ve never indulged in these similarities,” he said.

Mr Starmer went on: “If people stopped comparing me to previous leaders, and actually listen to the proposals we’re putting out there they will have a very, very good sense of where I am.

“My job is not to replicate what some past leader has done, my job is to take our Labour party and change it.”

After refusing to admit he was moving Labour to the centre ground, he told Sky News that he was turning it “from a party that looks inward to a party that looks outwards”.

He will set out his policies in a speech to delegates in Brighton on Wednesday.

Tory Britain looks like Soviet Union 40 years ago, says Labour MP

20:16 , Rory Sullivan

Our political correspondent Ashley Cowburn is at a rally being held by the socialist campaign group of MPs.

Barry Gardiner opened proceedings after chants of “Oh, Jeremy Corbyn!” died down.

“If you look what’s happening in our country — queues for petrol, no meat on the shelves of shops — Margaret Thatcher used to say that’s what the Soviet Union looks like. Well it’s Tory Britain for 40 years on,” he said.

Labour to reset party’s position on EU

20:36 , Rory Sullivan

Labour wants to create “strong close bileratal relations” with countries in the EU, the shadow foreign secretary has said.

Speaking at a fringe event in Brighton, Lisa Nandy said the UK and the bloc do need to have a “needly antagonistic relationship with each other”, stressing that stability in Ireland was a priority for Labour.

As part of the goal to “restore and repair” relationships, Ms Nandy will go on a tour of European capitals with party leader Keir Starmer.

Sir Keir Starmer and Lisa Nandy are set to go on a tour of European capitals to reset Labour‘s position on Brexit and its future relationship with the EU.

“In recent years our country was pulled apart by the Brexit debates and people simply can’t take any more of that, we’ve got to look forward, we’ve got to renew and rebuild, and that is the spirit that we’re bringing to this discussion, and to these future relations.”

“We are out of the EU, and that question is settled, but our future lies with Europe, geography is undeniable,” she added.

MPs pour scorn on Starmer at socialist rally

20:50 , Rory Sullivan

A group of Labour MPs from the left of the party have hit out at Keir Starmer’s leadership.

Lloyd Russell-Moyle, the Labour (Co-op) MP for Brighton Kemptown, offered perhaps the strongest rebuke of Labour’s direction of travel.

This has been a “goddam awful conference with a goddam awful leadership,” he said at a socialist rally, before declaring that the party’s leader was a “nice man” but not a “politician for the Labour party”.

Former shadow cabinet minister Rebecca Long-Bailey also took aim at Mr Starmer over changes to how Labour leaders are appointed, a move which is widely seen as an attempt to isolate the left.

“There is no rule change that will stop us from standing up when you kick us down,” she said.

Death of Labour left ‘somewhat exaggerated’, says Burgon

20:59 , Rory Sullivan

The Labour left is not dead and will produce another party leader, a Corbyn ally has insisted.

Speaking at a socialist rally on Tuesday evening, Richard Burgon MP said: “The rumours of the death of the Labour left are somewhat exaggerated.”

He claimed Keir Starmer’s team had been “missing in action” during recent crises in Britain, before telling activists it is their “job to make sure we’re a moral’re gonna make a better society”.

Political commentator John Rentoul to host Labour Party conference ‘Ask Me Anything’

21:20 , Eleanor Sly

The Independent’s chief political commentator John Rentoul will be answering your questions on the events of the Labour Party conference over recent days.

John Rentoul to answer your Labour Party conference questions live

McDonald accused of a “planned sabotage” of the conference

21:41 , Eleanor Sly

Andy McDonald, who resigned from the shadow cabinet yesterday, has been accused of a “planned sabotage of conference.”

Shadow Scottish secretary Ian Murray said that his former colleague on the front bench had “planned sabotage of conference, rather than it being about any principle”.

His resignation a day earlier took centre stage on Monday over Labour’s efforts to set out crime and health policies at the party conference in Brighton.

David Lammy: ‘The Conservatives are bringing this country down’

21:55 , Eleanor Sly

David Lammy, the shadow justice secretary, gave his “first ever speech platform speech” at the Brighton conference.

He accused the Conservative party of “coming after your human rights”, suggesting that the Labour party would “defend them.”

Before accusing the Conservatives of “bringing this country down.”

He tweeted a video of the speech:

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