Jewish MP, Dame Louise Ellman, who has been critical of Jeremy Corbyn’s handling of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, will face a vote of no-confidence in her constituency of Liverpool Riverside on the evening of Yom Kippur.
But the veteran politician, who has served for more the 20 years, will be unable to defend herself on the Jewish holy day when Labour members meet.
Dame Louise Ellman MP, who became the chair of Labour Friends of Israel in August, has been a prominent critic of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s handling of the antisemitism crisis, and recently said she “understood” if Jews felt like leaving the UK if he became prime minister.
Jewish News reports that the Constituency Labour Party in Liverpool Riverside lodged the motion this week, stating: “This branch is fully behind Jeremy Corbyn.”
Referring to Ellman’s recent comments, it added: “We have no confidence that our MP… will carry out the wishes of our CLP and our constituency or that she will follow Labour Party policy. This branch therefore calls on Louise Ellman to resign.”
Board of Deputies’ president Marie van der Zyl condemned the timing of the vote.
“That a Jewish MP should be threatened with a vote of no confidence tabled for Yom Kippur – the holiest day in the Jewish calendar – when she has no opportunity even to respond, ought to be a source of deep shame for the Labour Party,” she said.
“Louise Ellman has fought bravely against antisemitism in her own party, and she should be applauded, not vilified.”
TV personality Rachel Riley tweeted, “Corbyn’s Labour trying to purge ***yet another Jewish woman*** from the party (she’s been a member for 56 years, an elected representative for 50). And on Yom Kippur, the most solemn day of the Jewish calendar when she’ll have no right of reply. Disgrace.”
Former Eastenders actress, Tracey Ann Oberman, tweeted, “Wow just … wow @UKlabour. Deciding to deselect @LouiseEllman and holding the vote on the holiest Fast Day of the Jewish Year when even the least observant Jew in the world tries to keep it holy. Unbelievable. And you seriously think this Party should be allowed near Power.”
Wow just … wow @UKlabour. Deciding to deselect @LouiseEllman and holding the vote on the holiest Fast Day of the Jewish Year when even the least observant Jew in the world tries to keep it holy. Unbelievable. And you seriously think this Party should be allowed near Power. 🤢 https://t.co/Q0nmG5sUc9
— Tracy Ann Oberman (@TracyAnnO) October 3, 2019
Ellman is the latest Jewish MP who has been critical of Corbyn to face being kicked out by local Party members. Last week, Dame Margaret Hodge heard that she was facing a reselection challenge in her Barking constituency. Hodge famously berated Corbyn in the House of Commons, calling him “an antisemite”. She later refused to retract the accusation.
Conservative MP James Cleverly tweeted, “Labour MPs who have had a deselection process initiated against them. Luciana Berger. Margaret Hodge. Louise Ellman. I can spot two elements to this pattern.”
Investigative blogger, David Collier tweeted, “Not sure why anyone is surprised about the Louise Ellman vote on Yom Kippur. As Egypt and Syria showed in 1973 – enemies of the Jews – those who want to be rid of them- have that day circled in their calendar. Antisemites know when Jews are weak. It is why Israel must be strong.”