Scottish Daily Mail

Momentum bids to overtake Tories


THE hard-Left Momentum group is embarking on a massive recruitmen­t drive with the aim of having more members than the Tories by the next general election.

The Labour faction, which grew out of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership campaign in 2015, now has more than 36,000 members – with 1,000 recruits signing up each month.

It is credited with helping Labour outgun the Tories ahead of last year’s election by flooding constituen­cies with volunteers who went door to door seeking support from voters.

Momentum is already plotting a ‘decapitati­on strategy’ aimed at unseating senior Tories at the next election, including Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Home Secretary Amber Rudd. It is now looking to double in size as it seeks to tighten Mr Corbyn’s grip on the party.

Momentum’s membership surpassed 36,000 last week, putting it ahead of Ukip, which has around 25,000 members, and on course to overtake the Green Party, which has 39,000.

The Conservati­ves last published figures in 2013, when it had 149,800 members, but activists and academics now estimate this has fallen to 70,000 or fewer.

Momentum is run independen­tly of Labour and Mr Corbyn. However, since July all members have been required to also join the party and it is seeking to become an official Labour affiliate. ÷Two more Momentum supporters have been installed as Labour’s parliament­ary candidates in key seats.

Activists were picked this weekend to stand in Milton Keynes South and North East Derbyshire. It means that 22 of the 39 Labour candidates chosen so far for the next election have close links to Momentum or the unions.

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