The Labour Party has gained at least 100,000 new members in the space of just 10 days, and most are believed to be supporters of under-pressure leader Jeremy Corbyn.
The party’s membership has surpassed half a million for the first time since its records began, according to the Huffington Post.
The report adds that 80% of the new members who disclosed their motive for signing up cited their support for Corbyn.
The Labour leader has been told to resign by the vast majority of his own MPs in the wake of a “vote of no confidence” against him, and a host of shadow cabinet resignations.
However, despite his popularity plummeting among Labour MPs, it is clear that Corbyn continues to enjoy strong grassroots support.”It’s a huge surge for Jeremy,” a source told the Huffington Post. It is the latest symptom of just how severe the disconnect between the parliamentary Labour party and the membership really is.
This news comes as some of the Labour MPs who supported an attempted coup against Corbyn appear to have given up any hope of removing the former rebellious backbencher.
The opposition leader has refused to resign despite intense pressure and would probably enter any future leadership contest as the favourite given how large is support is among voting members.
Speaking to The Telegraph earlier this week, an unnamed Labour parliamentarian said: “There are more talks planned, but when one side’s red line is that Jeremy stays in post and the other side says he has to go, it is impossible to find a compromise. It’s done. It’s no good.”
Another said: “It’s finished. He will win easily in a second contest if he is on the ballot, it’s everything we wanted to avoid.”
It is important to note, though, that only around half of the 100,000 new members gave their reasons for signing up to the party. At least 50,000 refused or decided not to say why they joined.
This could be good news for the #SavingLabour movement, which is encouraging people to join the party in order to vote Corbyn out in the leadership contest which is likely on the horizon.
Corbyn’s challenge is expected to come from former Shadow Business Secretary Angela Eagle, a more moderate MP who is well-respected among her Labour peers.
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