Alastair Campbell kicked out of Labour party after voting Lib Dem in EU election
Former spin doctor Alastair Campbell has been kicked out of the Labour party after he admitted voting Lib Dem in the European elections.
Tony Blair's former adviser said he was “sad and disappointed” at the move and said he will be seeking to appeal.
Campbell, a leading campaigner for a second referendum, revealed live on television coverage of the EU election that he had not voted Labour "for the first time in my life" because of the party's refusal to fully endorse a so-called "People's Vote".
On Tuesday, he announced on Twitter: “Sad and disappointed to receive email expelling me from UK Labour - particularly on a day leadership finally seems to be moving to the right place on Brexit, not least thanks to tactical voting by party members, including MPs, councillors and peers who back People’s Vote…
“I am and always will be Labour. I voted Lib Dem, without advance publicity, to try to persuade Labour to do right thing for country/party…
“Plenty of precedent of members voting for other parties/causes. Some are now senior party staff. Approach also contrasts with our era when TB [Tony Blair] was being pressed by whips to withdraw whip for JC [Jeremy Corbyn] and others for persistently voting against UK Labour in Parliament, and he said No.”
According to Labour party rules, any member "who joins and/ or supports a political organisation other than an official Labour group or other unit of the Party" will "automatically be ineligible to be or remain a Party member".
A Labour party spokesperson said: "Support for another political party or candidate is incompatible with party membership.
“The Lib Dems cannot and will not end austerity. They cannot bring our country together or be trusted to deliver on their promises. They propped up the Tories for five years and imposed austerity that has devastated our communities.
"Labour will do things very differently, and ensure our society is run for the benefit of the many, not just a privileged few."
The move comes as a row over the party’s second referendum policy erupted between Labour chiefs in the wake of a poor performance in the Euro election.
In the poll, the Liberal Democrats had the strongest performance among clear Remain parties, picking up 15 more MEPs, while Labour lost 10.