Jeremy Corbyn’s enforcer speaks out on ‘decency’ of rebellion
Nick Brown may have just given hostile Labour MPs a useful get-out-of jail card.
Jeremy Corbyn angered many Labour MPs by recently sacking Rosie Winterton from her post as chief whip.
But has her replacement given disgruntled Labour moderates the perfect excuse for not towing the line?
Winterton was replaced by Nick Brown, one of Gordon Brown’s former political enforcers who also worked as a whip under Tony Blair - and had plenty of run-ins with Corbyn, then a serial rebel.
By effectively coming out of retirement earlier this month, the former Brownite bruiser became only person to have served as a Labour whip in three decades. And now he has now spoken out about clashing with Corbyn during the New Labour years.
The Newcastle MP told his local BBC station: “There isn’t a member of parliament who’s been on Jeremy’s case more firmly and frequently than myself,” he said.
“And his strength is this, he makes his mind up and he sticks to what he’s decided. I never once got him to change his mind when he was going to rebel against the Labour government. I never even got him to compromise and abstain.”
Pressed on Corbyn's rebellious nature, Brown insisted: “Strength of character and personal decency, those are his strengths.”
In other words, Corbyn’s chief whip has declared that he actually admired Corbyn for not taking the whip.