Labour leadership: senior ally 'urged Jeremy Corbyn to quit the race' because he was in danger of winning

One of Corbyn's senior supporters argued that he had already ensured the party's left-wing voice had been heard in the contest

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Jeremy Corbyn's camp has refused to deny claims that one of his senior allies urged him to quit the Labour leadership race.

One of his own senior supporters argued that the aim of Mr Corbyn entering the race - to ensure the party's left-wing voice was heard - had already been achieved and suggested he should stand aside because he was in danger of winning, according to the BBC.

Mr Corbyn's refused to confirm or deny that the conversation took place. A spokeswoman said: "Jeremy Corbyn is standing to be the next PM. The question is, who will be the Tory candidate?"

Mr Corbyn has had to repeatedly reject claims he does not actually want to be Labour leader and all the stress and media attention that being Leader of the Opposition would attract.

Asked whether he wanted to be Labour leader and Prime Minister in an interview last month, Mr Corbyn gave a less-than-convincing response, saying he would accept the "consequences" of the leadership contest and the subsequent election.

A poll for The Independent earlier this week revealed the uphill battle he faces to win the 2020 election if he is elected leader on Saturday.

Two out of three people believe he would be unlikely to be elected Prime Minister at the election, the OBR poll found, with just 34 per cent thinking he had a chance of taking Labour back into power.

And nearly half - 48 per cent - named his as the candidate most likely to harm the party's chances of winning the 2020 General Election.

 

 

Asked by Radio 4's World at One programme in August whether he genuinely wanted to be the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Corbyn replied: “I put myself forward in this leadership contest knowing there was difficulty getting on the ballot paper, and I’m grateful to colleagues that nominated me, genuinely so, even though they perhaps weren’t so keen on the process.

"We’re now in a very strong position, I’m enjoying this campaign," he added. "I wouldn’t be doing this if I wasn’t wanting and prepared to take on this position, and the consequences that flow from it, in the general election that follows after that.”

 

 

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