Labour civil war: Long-Bailey sparks sexism row by attacking Nandy for maternity leave

Ms Long-Bailey’s campaign team have been accused of starting a sexism row after a secret document emerged highlighting how to attack Ms Nandy. An internal document used by Ms Long-Bailey instructed volunteers to claim Ms Nandy was the only one of the remaining three candidates “who opposed the 2015 welfare bill”. But supporters of Ms Nandy hit back by pointing out the reason the Wigan MP missed the vote was because she had just given birth.

They also added Ms Nandy voted after having the child.

The document is believed to have been created by the far left grassroots campaign Momentum, who are pushing for Ms Long-Bailey to be the next leader of the Labour Party.

Website Red Roar uncovered the document that aims to boost support for Ms Long-Bailey while smearing her rivals.

In the section called “Trust” it refers to Ms Nandy as being “the only candidate who provided consistent support to Jeremy Corbyn, nominating him in 2015 and 2016, serving in the Shadow Cabinet 2016-2019, and regularly defending his policies and vision on the national media.”

It added: “Backed by nearly all Socialist Campaign Group MPs, and two of the UK’s biggest unions.

“The only leadership candidate who opposed the 2015 welfare bill.”

Momentum has also produced a video attacking Ms Nandy for missing the vote.

Ms Nandy campaign chairwoman Louise Haigh said: “It is really disappointing to see Momentum continue to attack a leadership candidate for having been on maternity leave.

“What message does this send to young women worried about balancing politics with having a family?”

A spokesman for the Long-Bailey campaign refused to comment on the document.

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Momentum last month balloted their members on who they wanted as leader of the party – but Ms Long-Bailey was the only candidate option for the role in the grassroots survey.

Jon Lansman, who leads the group, is also advising Ms Long-Bailey on her campaign.

The sexism row comes on the same day Ms Nandy sparked a debate of transgender rights.

The leadership candidate said male child rapists who transition to become women should be allowed to serve their sentences in female-only prisons.

Critics of the idea said it could put female inmates at harm.

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She told an audience today: “I believe fundamentally in people’s right to self-ID.

“I believe the Gender Recognition Act strikes the wrong balance in relation to that.

“I think that crimes that are recorded should be recorded as that person wishes, having gone through that process, received support and self-identified.

“I think trans women are women, I think trans men are men, so I think they should be accommodated in a prison of their choosing.”

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