Affiliated union Community nominates Starmer and Rayner for leader posts

The national executive committee of Labour-affiliated trade union Community has opted to nominate Keir Starmer in the leadership election and Angela Rayner for the deputy leadership post.

Both candidates have already secured their place on the ballot paper, having been the first to do so in their respective races, after receiving the backing of major affiliates UNISON and Usdaw.

Starmer also won the endorsement of affiliated environment group SERA, while Rayner was supported by the party-affiliated National Union of Mineworkers (NUM).

Each leadership candidate – including contenders for the deputy post – must gain the nominations of either 33 local parties or three affiliated organisations, including two unions, amounting to 5% of Labour’s affiliated membership.

Starmer and Rayner have now exceeded the requirements to pass through both the affiliate and local party routes to enter the final stage of the leadership contests.

Announcing the move, Community general secretary Roy Rickhuss said: “Community believes Keir Starmer is the candidate most ready to meet this challenge. His experience and vision are what the Labour Party needs to rebuild, win back the trust of voters, and lead a transformative Labour government.

“Community has also nominated Angela Rayner for deputy leader. We believe she will help unite our fractured party, reinvigorate the Labour movement, and lead us into government.

“While we were extremely impressed by most of the deputy leadership candidates, we also strongly encourage our members in CLPs to ensure Ian Murray makes the final ballot so that Labour members have the option of voting for him.

“Labour wins when it embraces ideas from across our broad church and Ian being on the ballot sends a clear message that every nation and region of the UK matters to the Labour Party.”

Deputy leadership candidate Ian Murray commented: “I welcome Community’s message to members across the UK to help me make the final ballot, and thank the union for recognising that a Scottish voice at the top of the UK party is critical.”

Community is known as a Corbynsceptic trade union, having endorsed Yvette Cooper in Labour’s 2015 leadership election and Owen Smith in 2016.

Lisa Nandy has also won her place on the ballot paper in Labour’s main leadership election. Rebecca Long-Bailey needs only one more affiliate, while Emily Thornberry will likely need to be nominated by at least 33 local parties.

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