Lloyd Russell-Moyle quits the shadow front bench

Posted On 16 Jul 2020 at 7:34 pm

Lloyd Russell-Moyle

Brighton Kemptown MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle has quit the shadow front bench, citing a campaign by the right-wing media.

The firebrand Labour MP has made a series of apologies in recent weeks, most notably for accusing author JK Rowling for weaponising her sexual assault against trans people.

He also apologised this month for comments made in 2009 in which he described Zionism as a dangerous form of nationalism.

Tonight, he announced that he was stepping back from front bench duties.

He said: “this afternoon I spoke to Keir and asked to step back from front bench duties as Minister for the Natural Environment but remain a Labour and Co-operative MP for Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven.

“It is with regret I leave the shadow ministry, but owing to a campaign by the right-wing media my position has become untenable.

“This has unleashed a torrent of online hate and daily calls of abuse that would not be acceptable in any workplace.

“It is my job to get political flack, but it is not the job of caseworkers, researchers and assistants to be attacked.

“It has also led to hounding and stress, from which I need a few weeks to support my team and myself to collectively recover.

“I am here to represent all my constituents and I am grateful to all those who voted for me, and to the people who believe Labour can make our country a fair, better, happier place for all of us.

“I shall continue to work hard for you.

“I remain incredibly proud of the work I have done in parliament in the past three years and I am proud of my role in holding the Government to account on immoral arms sales to Saudi Arabia, conducted the first wide-ranging Parliamentary enquiry into youth services in ten years, and in helping to lead the charge on tenants’ and renters’ rights.

“I shall return to the backbenches for the time being to support Keir in defending and furthering the manifesto we stood on and to achieve a Labour government.”

  1. Paul Chandler Reply

    Having been the agent for an opposing candidate to Lloyd at the 2019 General Election, I had a chance to watch him close up. IMHO he is not really the firebrand that he likea to portray but a good and kind man. I don’t agree with much of what he says but he is a sincere person. Of course what he said about JK Rowling was unacceptable and badly misjudged.

    • Greg Hadfield Reply

      As always, Paul. You are an honest and decent person. Best, GregH

  2. Benny Reply

    Interesting. Wondered what the MP representing us actually does.

  3. Valerie Reply

    This is sad stuff.

    The Labour Party warring factions have really got to calm down now. It does the credibility of neither faction – Keir/Blairite or Momentum – any favours. The hooligan level houndings & transparently false accusations of antisemitism are horrific.

    But so are the attacks on JK Rowling for having a view!

    There is a killer pandemic in progress & the economy is in meltdown! Climate change is an urgent issue. Raise your game ALL of you politicians!!!

  4. Gerry Reply

    I note how this pathetic, truly unhinged MP managed to blame everyone else for the “torrent of abuse” he claims he has received..he has, rightly, been called out for his rank misogyny, rancid crank obsession with Israel and Jews, and his puerile, attention seeking extremism. He is a disgrace – perhaps now he will focus on solving the real problems in his/my constituency – crime, anti social behaviour, open drug dealing, begging, filthy streets, graffiti the list is endless! I always voted Labour until recently – he, and those like him, are the reason why I didn’t vote Labour in the last election: the sooner he is gone as an MP, the better…he won’t be missed.

  5. David Reply

    Nothing LRM posted was anti-Semitic. He wrote that ethnic nationalism and taking land from Palestinians is not progressive and most people would agree with this. That a Labour MP cannot now say this means that criticising Israel for its crimes is off-limits and career-wrecking. That LRM’s comments were made in 2009 shows that a paid team is trawling the social media of left-wing Labour figures in order to get them cancelled. How many innocent Palestinians will die unheard, because of Sir Keir Starmer’s capitulation to Israel apologists?

    It’s telling that a large number of Labour MPs are Israel apartheid apologists. Would this have been tolerated during South African apartheid? No, I don’t think so.

    • Mike Reply

      Irrespective of LRM’s noisy views on this or that international cause or support for fashion politics, he was elected to represent all his constituents, not just those that share his pet causes. It may come as a shock to some of his ardent supporters, but the majority of constituents have more immediate concerns. Not very sexy or headline grabbing, but jobs, health, housing and education are what matters. Not conflicts in far off lands or gender politics. Not wishing to belittle his efforts or his sincerity, but is LRM really cut out for this line of work? Does he understand what he was elected to do?

      • David Reply

        How can remarks he made in 2009 mean LRM is concerned with his “pet causes” to the exclusion of his constituents? This was dragged up by his political enemies to damage his reputation.

        Where is your evidence that LRM doesn’t care about “jobs, health, housing and education”? This is purely down to how you and the media frame issues, not his actual constituency work.

  6. Gerry Reply

    Mike – excellent comments. I want an MP who cares about the actual constituency and constituents which he/she represents! We have so many day to day issues to deal with here in Brighton Kemptown – huge glaring problems of crime, anti social behaviour, drugs, begging etc that make everyday life in the area worse and worse, not to mention jobs, health, education which you rightly say are the prime concerns of most people who live here. Russell-Moyle is 100% fixated on fringe issues, and literally not bothered at all about his actual constituents or constituency. I hope he resigns his seat as well – make way for someone who actually wants to improve the lives and solve the problems of his local voters and area!

  7. Mike Reply

    I can guarantee, that had he stuck to the job he is paid to do, then far from having a problem with his ‘enemies’ (whoever they are supposed to be) he wouldn’t now be have a persecution complex. Sorry if you don’t like it, but that’s just how it looks to his ordinary, non-aligned local constituents. I repeat, is he cut out for this work?

    • David Reply

      I’m sure you’ll be among the ‘non-aligned local constituents’ who would be waxing lyrical, if a more right-wing MP like Peter Kyle were to support another foreign war. Certain overseas issues carry more weight.

      If Sir Keir Starmer would stop pandering to radicalised homeowners and older voters, who might like him, but won’t vote Labour and start trying to change people’s minds, Labour will fare better that the next election.

  8. Fishwife, 49 Reply

    He doesn’t seem in the least interested in local issues: or, at least, his minions don’t. I’ve contacted his constituency office several times about issues such as the repeated late-night noise from a nearby pub, drugs being dealt from cars parked directly outside our house, members of the street community defecating, fighting and openly injecting heroin in the street, and other examples of ongoing antisocial behaviour which, despite repeatedly being reported to the council and the police, are not being addressed. His “team” have been consistently obstructive and use every tactic possible to prevent these issues from reaching his hallowed ears.
    Being told, as happened on my most recent phone call, to “maybe try contacting the council again…?” when I tried to ask him for help because the council had failed to respond to repeated complaints, falls far short of what should be expected from the office of someone who’s been elected to serve the interests of their constituents.

  9. Gerry Reply

    Fishwife – strongly agree with your comments. When I have rung his office, you invariably get a “shrug of the shoulders” vibe along the lines of: well what do you expect us to do about drug dealing or burglaries or the state of the streets? I have long concluded that he doesn’t really give a hoot about “boring, everyday” things like that..he’s only interested if it’s about Yemen or Gaza, plus his horrific misogyny when attacking J K Rowling and then him minimising violence against women – confirmed for me just how hideous and nasty a politician he really is. We, and Brighton Kemptown, deserve better than this.

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