The Summer That Changed Everything and exposed the treachery of three Labour MP's.
It's not often we get to see Labour MP's who have plotted and schemed against the Corbyn leadership in all their ignominy, but David Modell's documentary film broadcast on BBC2 was a gem. (watch it above) Inadvertently it showed these MP's as shallow, out of touch with their constituents and much of the nation at large. It also displayed why the BBC and filmmakers like Modell are taken in by the chatter within the Westminster bubble.
The decision of Lucy Powell, Ruth Cadbury, and Stephen Kinnock to trash the Corbyn leadership and refuse to have him on their election leaflets was replicated across the UK by some of the party's centre right candidates. It was sad to see Sarah Champion a decent woman and MP echoing this rancid mood in the documentary.
In my own constituency during the general election campaign the candidate refused to have Corbyn's name on his campaign literature, a senior member of the constituency party was overheard aping the MSM by slagging Diane Abbott off, and before the manifesto was released another told a campaign meeting "Jeremy Corbyn's economic policies were deluded."
When a member pointed this out he was smeared as being divisive, not a thought was given to how he and other supporters of Corbyn might consider such behavior as in itself extremely divisive.
Despite all this, and a candidate who was not popular in parts of the constituency, Labour came within 345 votes of winning the seat after Momentum flooded the constituency with their activists.
But I digress.
There are scenes in the film which almost take your breath away, at the beginning Stephen Kinnock tells Modell that Corbyn will have to take “a long, hard look in the mirror.” After the exit poll was announced he was left speechless. When he regained his composure and was ready to talk he was firmly told by his wife what to say to the waiting media.
Which basically boiled down to whatever you do, just don't mention Jeremy. Given Kinnock had spent much of the campaign slagging Jeremy off to the same journalists one could almost see him go weak at the knees. He had nothing prepared as the speech in his pocket was about telling Jeremy to take a hard look at himself and resign. What a pitiful man, like father like son.
Next up was Lucy Powell, who is also seen in the film pouring out bile about Corbyn. When the election exit poll came in she seemed in a state of shock but her face like Kinnock's told exactly how she felt. All she could say was "Oh Wow" which told us all we needed to know about her politics.
Both expected a poor result for Corbyn Labour and they couldn't hide their disappointment. Despite their bluster they clearly preferred a strong Tory victory as they saw it as the only way to remove Corbyn and further advance their careers.
For the film maker Modell the penny finally began to drop. It was Corbyn's personality, and Momentums energy which helped get the Labour vote out. It was their activists enthusiasm on the doorstep which convinced millions to vote for Corbyn Labour. Not enough for sure but enough to make Jeremy Corbyn's position as Party leader unshakable.
On a visit to Momentum’s HQ, Modell was surprised to learn the group’s Facebook page had 16 million likes. He clearly preferred to listen to gossip and bile instead of checking out Momentums web site.
As Daisy Wyatt wrote on iNews daily Briefing:
To not understand how social media “won” the election for Labour is to fail to grasp how Corbyn has won a groundswell of support among the most marginalised, who feel Facebook has given them a voice.