Labour betrayed British Jews by not expelling Ken Livingstone, Theresa May says

The former Mayor of London has refused to apologise

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The Labour Party has “betrayed” Britain’s Jewish community by not expelling Ken Livingstone for his remarks about Hitler and Zionism, the Prime Minister will say today.

In a speech in Nottinghamshire launching the Conservatives’ local election campaign Theresa May is expected to present the upcoming contests as a choice between the Tories and “the chaos and disarray of the rest”.

The Prime Minister will attack “a Labour party which just this week revealed the depths to which it has now sunk, betraying the Jewish community in our country by letting Ken Livingstone off the hook. 

“It could not be clearer that the Labour party is now a long way away from the common, centre ground of British politics today,” she will say.

A secretive Labour committee announced this week it would not expel Ken Livingstone from the party for his comments; he has already been suspended for 11 months and will now be suspended for another year.  

Critics have characterised Mr Livingstone’s suggestion that Adolf Hitler provided support to the Zionist movement as antisemitic while the former mayor himself says he was merely stating historical fact.

Mr Livingstone has declined to apologise for his comments, a move which prompted Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to announce a further investigation into his conduct by the party’s National Executive Committee. 

Ms May will also use the speech to hit out at “a Labour party totally out of touch with the concerns of the British people”, arguing that it “ignores the priorities of local communities and instead indulges its own ideological obsessions”.

Her speech comes the same day as Labour announces its latest policy: free school meals for all primary school children, funded by VAT on private school fees.

Mr Corbyn said the policy would mean that no child would be go hungry because of their background.

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