Labour leadership hopeful Rebecca Long-Bailey being advised by Momentum founder
PUBLISHED: 10:35 22 December 2019 | UPDATED: 10:44 22 December 2019
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Labour leadership hopeful Rebecca Long-Bailey is risking censure from party moderates by taking on the founder of Momentum as a campaign adviser, according to reports.
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Jon Lansman, a founder of the hard-left populist campaign group, was reported by the Sunday Times to be helping Long-Bailey's campaign to take Jeremy Corbyn's place as Labour leader.
The move is likely to concern the centre-left of the party, with former home secretary Alan Johnson having launched a tirade of criticism at Lansman on election night, saying he wants the "cult" of Momentum "gone".
WATCH: Former Labour home secretary rips into 'cult' of Momentum
Shadow business secretary Long-Bailey is rumoured to be mounting a challenge along with Richard Burgon, who backed her candidacy last week.
The pair, who are both to the left of the party, would be seen as the 'continuity candidates' for Corbynism soon after he led Labour to its worst election defeat since the 1930s.
Former party adviser Lance Price earlier said he believed the party would be in danger if it elects Long-Bailey as leader.
The Sunday Times also reports that Long-Bailey may have exaggerated claims about the hardship of her upbringing.
In past interviews, as well as on election leaflets, she has said her political outlook was shaped by watching her father worry about losing his job on Salford docks.
In an election leaflet, she wrote: "My dad, Jimmy, worked on the Salford docks and I grew up watching him worrying when round after round of redundancies were inflicted on the docks."
But Long-Bailey, born in September 1979, would only have been two when the docks closed in 1982.
A spokesperson for Long-Bailey told the Sunday Times: "Rebecca, like many others in the north, saw first-hand the devastation created by Thatcher's brutal economic regime."
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