Labour peer Lord Warner of Brockley has resigned the party’s whip, saying it “hasn’t a hope in hell” of winning elections under its leader Jeremy Corbyn.
The Labour peer, who spent four years as health minister in Tony Blair’s government, was appointed a life peer in 1998 and took the title because he grew up in Brockley.
In Warner’s resignation letter, he said that the current Labour party wasn’t “acting like a government in waiting”. He will now sit in the Lords as a cross-bencher.
Warner has previously gathered criticism from then shadow health secretary, Andy Burnham, by publicly stating that he would vote alongside Conservative and Liberal Democrat positions on elements of privatisation of the NHS in 2013.
Politicians who resign a party’s whip remove themselves from the discipline of the party and in essence are resigning from the party.
Dianne Abbot MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington and Shadow Minister for International Development said: “I have no comment to make”, when questioned about Lord Warner’s parting words.
South East London Peoples Assembly, a local left wing group who are not affiliated with but support Labour under Corbyn’s leadership, told EastLondonLines they found Lord Warner’s comments “disappointing”.