Kezia Dugdale: anti-Semitism allegations have “unquestionably had an effect” on Labour’s electoral prospects
Dugdale’s comments follow suspension of Terry Kelly, Labour councillor for Paisley North, over allegations of anti-Semitism
Allegations of anti-Semitism within the Labour party have “unquestionably had an effect” on Labour’s electoral chances, according to leader Kezia Dugdale.
Dugdale’s comments follow the party’s decision to suspend Terry Kelly, Labour councillor for Paisley North, pending an investigation into allegations he made anti-Semitic comments in blog posts.
Kelly’s blog claimed that “the American Jewish Lobby is extremely powerful and it has its boot on Obama’s neck”.
He also suggested the “Jewish lobby” had attempted to rig the Oscars.
With Scottish Labour currently trailing the SNP in the polls for the 2016 Scottish Parliament election, Dugdale said voters had expressed concern about the ongoing row over racism in the Labour party.
Dugdale said: “It has unquestionably had an effect. I am not going to go into the business of analysing what has happened over the past few days, but it is coming up on the doorsteps.
“I haven’t directly spoken to Jeremy [Corbyn] about it. I did speak to him yesterday about the final hours of the campaign, I am in regular touch with him.
“I am going to do what I always said I would do, which is focus on the positive reasons for voting Labour.”
UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has established an inquiry, headed by former Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti, into anti-Semitism in the party.
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