The resignations have reached an unprecedented level. So far there have been:
- 20 members of the Shadow Cabinet resign
- 18 junior shadow ministers resign
- Nine parliamentary private secretaries resign
Corbyn’s new shadow cabinet has MPs in it who were elected just a year ago.
There are a number of ways they may sack Corbyn. The main three are:
- Have a formal challenge to him triggering a leadership election and if fewer than 35 MPs and MEPs nominate him, he can’t stand (this is a matter of some dispute and could end up in court)
- Have a contested leadership election and hope they get a majority of members and supporters voting to replace him
- Elect their own leader of the parliamentary party, and insist the Speaker recognises him or her as Leader of the Opposition leaving Corbyn as leader of the extra parliamentary party but without funds or staff
Any of these paths may tear the Labour Party apart. And leaving Corbyn as Leader will almost certainly mean the Conservatives win the upcoming election.
UPDATE: Corbyn has lost a confidence vote 40 to 172. So less than 20% of his caucus support him. To be fair to him though that is a greater percentage than Andrew Little got when he was elected leader – Little had the confidence of only four MPs!