Anti-Corbyn MPs planning split 'will sue Labour so they can use its name'

Mr Corbyn's office however believes the 'vast majority' of MPs will respect the leadership election result

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Indy Politics

A group of rebel Labour MPs are planning to split off into a new group and sue the remainder of their old party so they can use its name, it has been reported.

The Daily Telegraph newspaper says “embryonic” plans are being hatched for a “semi-split” in the event Jeremy Corbyn wins this summer’s leadership election again.

The approach would see a legal challenge launched for Labour assets, branding and property.

Owen Smith says Jeremy Corbyn should have always been on the ballot

MPs would also elect an alternative leader to Mr Corbyn from amongst their own number, and appeal to the Speaker to recognise them as the official opposition if they had enough support.

If fully successful that approach would effectively see the rebels take party control of the party through the courts having just lost the leadership election. 

“We can be liberated from the drag anchor and the poison that is Jeremy and his team and would be able to take the fight to the Tories,” one MP told the newspaper.

A second is reported to have said: “The notion that we’ll all go back to happy families is nonsense.”

A spokesperson for Jeremy Corbyn told the Independent: “We hope and believe that the vast majority of Labour MPs will respect the democratic choice of party members.”

The floated approach highlights a split in opinion among anti-Corbyn Labour MPs. 

Some of the MPs who resigned from Mr Corbyn’s front bench are understood to be considering a reconciliation in the event of him winning a second leadership election.

On resigner, Sarah Champion, has already returned to work as shadow home office minister for preventing abuse. Other MPs are said to be considering following her, pending the election result.

Mr Corbyn is going head-to-head with leadership rival Owen Smith in a leadership contest that will last until the party's conference this autumn.