Len McCluskey refuses to join Corbynites chiding Chuka Umunna
The Unite chief appears to have a better understanding of metaphors than John McDonnell...
When Chuka Umunna used a speech on Saturday to accuse Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters of driving MPs like himself out of the party, a few Labour figures got strangely excited about the language used by the former leadership hopeful.
The fact that Umunna had urged the Labour leader to “call off the dogs” was seized on by Owen Jones on Twitter, while in the real world John McDonnell also milked it for all he could.
Speaking to the BBC, the shadow chancellor raged: “Our party members are not dogs. Our party members are human beings who joined the Labour party because they wanted to create a better society. They're not dogs. I find it grotesquely offensive that anybody, particularly a Labour MP, refers to our party members as dogs.
“They are the people who go out and deliver the leaflets, who canvas, who get Labour MPs elected and who secure a Labour government that will transform the lives of our country.”
Meanwhile on Sky News, Umunna explained that he had been using a “figure of speech”. And he pointed out that McDonnell had used the same kind of words toward Gordon Brown in 2007.
Now Unite boss Len McCluskey has weighed in on the row. But for once he has sided with a moderate MP over a top Corbyn ally.
“It was a figure of speech. I’m sure he didn’t mean it personally,” he said today.
At least somebody near the Labour leadership appears to understand the concept of a metaphor…