Lisa Nandy enters race to succeed Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader

PUBLISHED: 09:19 04 January 2020 | UPDATED: 09:19 04 January 2020

Lisa Nandy, Labour MP. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA.

Lisa Nandy, Labour MP. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA.

PA Archive/PA Images

Prominent backbencher Lisa Nandy has joined the race to succeed Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader with calls to win back trust in the party's former heartlands.

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Wigan MP Nandy, a former shadow cabinet minister, said on Friday that the successor must be someone with "skin in the game" and called for the rejection of "the paternalism of the past".

Earlier on Friday, outspoken Birmingham Yardley MP Ms Phillips confirmed her bid with a call to elect "a different kind of leader".

Both are seen as coming from the party's centre-left and will face confirmed contenders shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry and shadow treasury minister Clive Lewis.

Others, including shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer and the current leadership's favourite Rebecca Long-Bailey, are also expected to enter the race.

Nandy announced her candidacy in a letter to the Wigan Post, saying she has "a deeper understanding of what has gone awry in our discredited political system" having represented her constituents since 2010.

She became one of the most prominent Labour voices for the result of the EU referendum to be implemented and criticising calls for another public vote.

"Without what were once our Labour heartlands, we will never win power in Westminster and help to build the country we know we can be," she said.

"I have heard you loud and clear when you said to earn that trust means we need a leader who is proud to be from those communities, has skin in the game and is prepared to go out, listen and bring Labour home to you."

She said delivering Brexit should not mean "turning our backs on decency, tolerance, kindness".

"It breaks my heart that in this election so many of you felt you had no choice but to vote for a Tory party that has sent a wrecking ball through our community over the last decade," Nandy added.

In a recent YouGov poll of the Labour membership Nandy was placed at the bottom of list of preferred candidates for leader with Phillips in third place behind both shadow business secretary Long-Bailey and Sir Keir, who was clear favourite.

But the outsiders will be hoping to boost their profiles with the race not expected to formally get under way until Tuesday before a new leader is installed by the end of March.

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