‘MPs accept we’ve got election winner’
Emily Thornberry, newly re-elected MP for Islington South and Finsbury, says Parliamentary Labour Party is now united behind Jeremy Corbyn
16 June, 2017 — By Koos Couvée
EMILY Thornberry has said it is “wonderful” that the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) is now united behind Jeremy Corbyn, after the party gained 30 seats in last week’s general election.
Meetings of the PLP were often unpleasant affairs for the Labour leader in the past but on Tuesday night he was greeted with a hero’s welcome from MPs as he told them they could soon be in government.
Speaking to the Tribune at her Westminster office this week, the newly re-elected MP for Islington South and Finsbury said of the atmosphere in Parliament: “It’s wonderful. It’s very positive.
“The criticism of a lot of MPs was that their concern was that Jeremy wasn’t an election winner. And they now accept that he is.”
Ms Thornberry, who has been loyal to Mr Corbyn since he was elected leader of the party in 2015, added: “They’ve calmed down, cheered up and want to work as one team, which is great.
“We have been in such a miserable state for the last couple of years.
“Disunited parties are not popular [but] we showed during the general election what a united party looks like, how we can be such a great force when we are united.
“We just have to keep doing that.”
Ms Thornberry added that when it came to reaching out to anti-Corbyn rebels, the Labour leader was “the most magnanimous and the least likely to bear grudges” of all the leaders she has known.
She warned against triumphalism, but was confident Labour would win the next election.
“Although we are really pleased with how well we did, we did fail, we didn’t win,” she added.
“But whichever way you cut it we’re ready to be the next government.
“And that’s why no matter how much it costs the country, no matter how unstable we remain, no matter how much of a threat their agreement with the DUP might be to the Good Friday Agreement, the Tories will cling on for as long as they possibly can, because when there is a general election, as I fear that there will have to be, we’ll win.”