By George – It’s Time To Eat Your Hat

Keir Starmer Kim Leadbeater Batley & Spen Eat Your Hat Galloway

Nikolay Kalinin digests the result of the Batley and Spen by-election and reminds firebrand fruitcake George Galloway to eat his hat

It didn’t seem likely, but Labour has managed to keep the Batley and Spen seat – albeit with a minimal majority of just 323 votes, with Kim Leadbeater narrowly beating Conservative candidate Ryan Stephenson.


This result brings an end to what has been a campaign that has been described as “a battleground” by one constituent, mainly due to the divisions within the Muslim community, most of whom have condemned Labour’s stance on foreign policy issues such as Palestine and have not forgotten Blair’s support for the Iraq war.


The man who helped further inflame these divisions, George Galloway, who in the days leading up to the election complained about the Batley council taking down his posters for not meeting election requirements, has responded to Labour’s win by transforming into Britain’s answer to Donald Trump and telling reporters: “On multiple grounds, we will apply to the court for this election result.”


During the campaign Galloway claimed that if Labour came in any other place but third, he would eat his own hat, and if he truly is a politician of honour, he should now keep his word and do just such.


The campaign has also seen allegations of dirty tactics used by groups in order to ruin Labour’s chances, with the most notable example being the distribution of a fake TUC leaflet highlighting Sir Keir Starmer’s support for BLM and stating that “it is high time that white people acknowledged their privilege and gave something back to people of colour.”


What Labour must remember is that their minimal majority should actually be a wake-up call for them, even if Conservative MPs and members of the public have attributed the narrow defeat of the Tories to Matt Hancock’s affair and the government pushing back “freedom day.”


Ever since MP Jo Cox – who was the sister of the new MP Leadbeater – was murdered in 2016 by a member of the far-right, there have been attempts to divide the community, and the events at local grammar school are the latest which have allowed people like George Galloway to exploit divisions for their own gain.


Even though Galloway did not manage to topple Starmer and Labour, he did manage to cause significant damage to Labour by taking away a sizeable amount of their Muslim base, notably by condemning LGBTQ+ inclusive education and promising to give control of what children can learn to their parents, which appealed to much of the Muslim population.


Labour should work as hard as possible within their English constituencies in order to prevent division, not only regarding the issue of Brexit but also regarding local issues. Starmer should also not restrain himself from condemning Johnson’s government at every opportunity, because only then will ‘Bosie The Clown’ be made to take accountability.


After his antics in Batley & Spen simply caused division, but allowed Labour its narrow victory, it is time to remind George Galloway of his own words and to make him follow up on his promise and consume his own headwear.
Commenting on the result for the ‘Daily Mail,’ Simon Walters observed: “[The] Batley by-election loss proves Boris Johnson needs a shot in the arm all over again… One Conservative from a ‘Red Wall’ constituency who campaigned there told me: ‘I owe my seat to Boris but people in Batley were not happy with his dithering on Hancock. It was tin-eared.’”
Sir Keir Starmer may have been just about saved from obliteration in Batley and Spen, but what must be remembered about the campaign is that George Galloway used the seat to spark what Lady Shami Chakrabarti, the former attorney general for England and Wales, termed “complex northern brew toxic.” Going further, Lady Chakrabarti added: “Galloway has form for misogyny, having made offensive comments about forced marriage in the hateful campaign he ran against Naz Shah in Bradford West in 2015, and having speculated that sex assault allegations made against Julian Assange were merely ‘bad sexual etiquette.’ In his latest campaign, the dexterous shapeshifter has made hay from a nasty dispute about images of the prophet being shown in a classroom, one minute affirming people’s ‘right to defend religious sensibilities’ and the next sidling up to self-styled ‘free speech activist’ Lawrence Fox.”
George Galloway has now vowed to challenge the result in court. In a statement, he remarked: “The result of this by-election cannot stand. We will take whatever legal measures necessary to have that result set-aside. There are multiple reasons… But the tin hat was put on the banana republic exercise that has been called this parliamentary by-election by the returning officer’s decision to refuse to grant a recount when the margin of victory was less than one per cent.”


  1. It’s a mistake to perpetuate the myth that Jo Cox was murdered “by a member of the far right”. There is something very wrong with the story of Jo Cox’s murder. The patsy who is currently in prison is a gentleman of low IQ who did gardening jobs around the town. Cox had had access to the Panama Papers. Don’t believe the myths, dig deep, then dig deeper.

  2. They already held the seat, so why the big celebration, claiming that Labour was back! Think they had better look more closely at the stats. If this was a sympathy vote, with Jo Cox’s sister being their candidate, I don’t think a win by less the 350 votes is something to shout about. Also, George Galloway, please take the hint, there really isn’t anywhere in British Politics for you, your not wanted, why don’t you leave and do some actual good for the nations that you ‘care’ about. The Red Cross are always looking for volunteers… I wonder if they’d have you…. I wouldn’t hold you breath thou! Happy hat munching!

  3. If there was an award for carpet-bagging, Galloway would surely win the equivalent of a gold medal. In the last ten years alone, he’s stood for the Scottish Parliament (twice), Bradford West, the London Mayoral Election, Manchester Gorton, West Bromwich East, and Batley and Spen.

    I really don’t understand why. Even when he actually got elected in Bradford West, he proved to be a wholly ineffectual MP – who (according to a few accounts) was hardly ever in the constituency, and only put in a voting attendance record of c. 10% in Parliament. And that’s before I even get on to the fact that he jumped on the populist Brexit bandwagon, and did a 180-degree turn from supporting remaining in the EU to claiming he was a lifelong Brexiteer.

    I saw today that he plans to legally challenge the Batley and Spen result. Frankly, he seems to have become more insane/Trumpian by the day.


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