Starmer pledges to lead the fight against anti-Semitism in the Labour Party

Keir Starmer and Rebecca Long-Bailey

Keir Starmer and Rebecca Long-Bailey

They join the shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer, who was the first to send the required number of followers this week.

Barry Gardiner, the United Kingdom shadow trade secretary, is considering mounting a late bid to enter the Labour leadership race as the party looks to find a new leader to replace Jeremy Corbyn by April 4, according to an interview published by the Daily Mirror newspaper on Thursday.

Unlike Ms Long-Bailey, who gave Mr Corbyn 10/10 and Ms Thornberry who gave him 0/10, Sir Keir refused to give him marks out 10 for his leadership.

Sir Keir Starmer claimed he will lead the fight against anti-Semitism in the Labour Party.

Ahead of the official launch, he said: "We have to rebuild people's trust in Labour as a force for good and real change".

Shadow's global trade secretary Barry Gardiner confirmed that he would give up the race for the top spot.

Shadow global trade secretary Barry Gardiner has also confirmed he is "considering" a late bid for the Labour leadership.

Brent North's MP said Thursday that he was "considering" a pitch to follow Mr. Corbyn, but he admitted later in the day that he had spoken to MPs that he did not have the necessary support.

Nominations for members of the Parliamentary Workers' Party (PLP) are closed on Monday.

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Early front-runner Sir Keir has already been backed for leader by Unison, the country's largest trade union.

Referencing to the decision to expel former spin doctor to Tony Blair, Alastair Campbell, for supporting the Liberal Democrats at the European elections, Sir Keir added: "It seemed to me that if you have been chucked out of the Labour Party for supporting another political party, you should be chucked out for being anti-Semitic".

Those who are successful in the second stage will then get their names on the final ballot paper that goes out to members, with a new leader due to be announced at a special conference on April 4.

"We should have done more on anti-Semitism. He positioned us in the right place on anti-austerity but we lost the election and now he is stepping down", he said.

"On that basis, I wouldn't give him anything out of 10". I wouldn't say it's for somebody else.

On Friday, figures from the Labour Party showed Mr Lewis and Ms Thornberry were the only two in the six-candidate field who had failed to reach the threshold of 22 nominations - Mr Lewis with four and Ms Thornberry at nine.

In the vice chairmanship competition, the secretary for shadow formation, Angela Rayner, continues to lead with 71 nominations - an increase to 45.

Ian Murray, Labour's only Scottish MP, has passed the second round with 29 backers.

Three others - Richard Burgon on 18, Rosena Allin-Khan with 17 and Dawn Butler with 15 - are hoping they can also make the cut.

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