Clare Short facing Labour expulsion

FORMER International Development Secretary Clare Short - who resigned in opposition to the invasion of Iraq - could be expelled from the Labour Party after an outspoken onslaught in which she encouraged voters to shun New Labour and vote to create a hung parliament.

By Graham Dines

FORMER International Development Secretary Clare Short - who resigned in opposition to the invasion of Iraq - could be expelled from the Labour Party after an outspoken onslaught in which she encouraged voters to shun New Labour and vote to create a hung parliament. Disciplinary action could result in her suspension as early as next week.

Chief Whip Jacqui Smith said the Birmingham Ladywood MP's outburst was “completely unacceptable.” A party spokesman said: “The General Secretary has written to Clare Short to clarify the situation and will take the matter to the National Executive Committee (NEC) next week for their consideration.”

Ms Short, who is not seeking re-election as an MP, wrote in The Independent newspaper that she was profoundly ashamed of the Government, claiming Tony Blair's “craven”' support for George Bush's policies had made the world a more dangerous place.


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Mr Blair's support for US neoconservative foreign policy had “dishonoured the UK, undermined the UN and international law and helped to make the world a more dangerous place.”

Attacking the style of Mr Blair and his Government, she said: “In addition to the arrogance and lack of principle of New Labour, there is an incredible incompetence. Policy is announced from No 10 to grab media attention and nothing is properly thought through.”

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Ms Short came up with a novel solution to electoral reform - a hung parliament, in which Labour and the Tories should hold a third of seats each with the final third made up of the Greens and others.

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