Eddie Izzard issue fresh video pitch to activists as voting opens in race for NEC

30th November, 2017 9:17 am

Voting has opened in the crunch elections for three new member places on Labour’s ruling body.

As ballots go out today, Eddie Izzard, one of the candidates, published a video in which he appealed to activists to help him propel Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street and included footage of him berating Nigel Farage on the BBC.

The comedian, charity marathon runner and pro-EU campaigner also appeared to aim a swipe at the often factional nature of elections to the national executive committee (NEC) when he said: “I am not being wheeled out by anyone”.

The Momentum-backed slate of Jon Lansman, Manchester councillor Yasmine Dar and national policy forum representative Rachel Garnham appear favourites, having topped the table of nominations from constituency Labour Parties (CLPs).

Lansman, the founding chair of Momentum who published his own video this week, Dar and Garnham are part of the Centre-Left Grassroots Alliance slate, backed by Momentum and the Campaign for Labour Party Democracy.

They are up against Izzard, former NEC rep Johanna Baxter and Sikhs for Labour vice-chair Gurinder Singh Josan.

Izzard, Baxter and Josan describe themselves as independent pro-diversity candidates but rivals have pointed out their names appear on the same campaign website.

“I have the energy and the drive to represent labour party members on the NEC. I believe in doing politics differently and I want people from diverse and different groups to be part of the Labour Party and part of our political system,” Izzard said today.

“I’m now performing in four languages and I’ve played 45 countries all around the world, ran about 80 marathons and helped raise about £4.5 million for charity. So I try and do my bit to do things differently. I’ve always campaigned for the Labour Party in good times and in the tough times and I will campaign for LGBT rights and I am strongly pro-European. Above all I believe in humanity.

“I am doing this, I’m choosing to do this, to come out and say I want to stand for the NEC as I have done as an activist in many elections now…

“We have a positive manifesto of hope, Jeremy Corbyn is taking the fight to the Tories in Parliament and around the country. I want to help him I want us all to come together and to win the next general election whenever it may be.”

The ballot closes on January 12.

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