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Mr McDonald, until yesterday shadow employment secretary, quit on the claim that he was told by Sir Keir Starmer’s office to argue against a £15 per hour minimum wage and the raising of statutory sick pay to the living wage figure.
Ian Murray, shadow Scottish secretary, today said the resignation “looks as if it might be a planned sabotage of conference” rather than being about principle.
In a speech later today, Nick Thomas-Symonds, the shadow home secretary, is set to invoke the famous Blair-era slogan “tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime” while pledging to tackle antisocial behaviour if elected.
He will accuse the Conservatives of being “soft on crime and soft on causes on crime” in a knowing reference to the New Labour pledge.
Diane Abbott: ‘Nonsense’ to say resignation was sabotage
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 Aujourd'hui 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.”
Elle a ajouté: “A lot of constituency delegates support £15 an hour. It’s the very least.”
Labour invokes Tony Blair with ‘tough on crime’ and anti-social behaviour push
Labour is to invoke Tony Blair’s “tough on crime” message and promise a crackdown on antisocial behaviour if it is elected, écrit Jon Pierre.
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:
Shadow Home Secretary promises police crackdown in party conference speech
Starmer showed support for £15 minimum wage in past
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.
À l'époque, il a dit: “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.”
Recap of last night’s resignation
Catch up on last night’s resignation row with Jon Pierre’s coverage:
Andy McDonald says party is ‘more divided than ever’ under Sir Keir
McDonald resignation looks like ‘planned sabotage’
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, mentionné: “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.”
Il ajouta: “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.”