Labour row over choice of Parliamentary candidate
Thursday, 2 November 2023
Widespread anger is being expressed on social media after Calder Valley Labour Party members were offered just three people to choose from, when they come to vote for their parliamentary candidate for next year's general election.
The Labour Party National Executive have blocked other local candidates including Mytholmroyd councillor, Scott Patient, a member of the Calderdale Cabinet who was gathering strong support, and who had the backing of at least three trade unions.
In a statement posted on Twitter and Facebook, Cllr Scott Patient said, "It is with frustration and deep sadness that I announce I have not been longlisted in Labour's Calder Valley Parliamentary selection.
"I'd like to thank the many people across Calder Valley and further afield that pledged their backing and endorsements for me, from right across the Labour Party, no matter their shade of red. I'd like to ask all those people who supported me to stay in Labour too."
Cllr Patient added that it was also regrettable that "high quality local female candidates" were not afforded the opportunity to make their case to the membership. Hebden Bridge councillor Sarah Courtney was another popular candidate for whom local Labour Party members will not have the opportunity to consider as a candidate.
One response on social media which was typical: "Thank you Scott for running a passionate and dedicated campaign up until this point; free of snipes and jabs and simply putting a positive case forward. It is a disgrace that you and the fantastic other local candidates were blocked from the longlist and I have extremely serious concerns about the process and the attack on member democracy. We are trusted to campaign and dedicate our lives to the party but not trusted to pick our candidate."
The three candidates members will be able to choose from are:
Josh Fenton-Glynn: Hebden Bridge councillor, who was the Labour candidate against Craig Whittaker in the general elections of 2015, 2017 and 2019.
Dot Foster: Sowerby Bridge councillor and former Mayor of Calderdale
Adam Wilkinson: also a councillor for Sowerby Bridge.
There is no current timetable for when the Calder Valley Labour Party will make its decision.
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