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Jeremy Corbyn's Opponents Want To Know Why They're Not Considered Hostile

The Labour leader's office allegedly produced a list ranking the loyalty of MPs from "core" to "hostile". Some anti-Corbyn MPs tell BuzzFeed News they're gutted they aren't considered sufficiently hostile.

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Labour MPs who oppose Jeremy Corbyn have been left disappointed after a list ranking their loyalty, allegedly produced by the leader's office, failed to put them in the "hostile" category.

Peter Powell / PA Wire/Press Association Images

The list, which was leaked to The Times, has been the talk of Labour MPs since it was published on Wednesday morning. It attempts to rank almost all the 230 Labour MPs on a five-point scale of "core", "core group plus", "neutral but not hostile", "core group negative", and "hostile".

The result was a chaotic prime minister's questions, with Labour's John Woodcock MP blaming the "stupid fucking list" for turning the party in a laughing stock during a bad week for the government.

All the same, some anti-Corbyn Labour MPs have felt their pride bashed after being ranked as relatively loyal to the leader, baffling their colleagues.

Mike Gapes, the Labour MP for Ilford South and a longstanding critic of Corbyn, told BuzzFeed News he was amazed at how he managed to make the "neutral but not hostile" group.

PA

The MP, who has just returned to parliamentary duties, said all his colleagues were talking about the list in the House of Commons. This had prompted a "huge amount of banter in the tea room" between Labour MPs who wanted to know why some of them had been given overly optimistic loyalty ratings by the leadership team.

He joked it had taken serious illness for him to miss out on being classed as "hostile".

"My assumption as to why I'm in neutral is I went into hospital for two months and my brother had my phone so I couldn't tweet," he said. "I was incommunicado. For five weeks I was in intensive care, three weeks I was in an induced coma."

"It's a very amateurish production, it's got errors and spelling mistakes," he said. "It shows the incompetence of whoever's put it out. Most members of the PLP are treating it as a great big joke."

However, he said his recovery from illness meant he would take his time before trying to be upgraded to the hostile group: "I'm not going to go out of my way to make up for it. I've got to take things steady!"

Denis Healey once described neutrality as a policy for hermits.

Thought for the day. I'm not "neutral" about anything.

However, he said his recovery from illness meant he would take his time before trying to be upgraded to the hostile group: "I'm not going to go out of my way to make up for it. I've got to take things steady!"

Meanwhile, other Labour MPs in the "core group negative" section said they were fighting to join the "hostile" category.

One MP, who asked not to be named, said they were considering asking "for an immediate upgrade to hostile".

"My constituents will be cross that I'm not in the hostile group!" they added.

Meanwhile, another anti-Corbyn Labour MP who was baffled to see themselves ranked as "core group negative" but used a BuzzFeed quiz to decide that they really should be in the "hostile" group.

And some "hostile" MPs such as Jamie Reed remained, well, hostile.

@jimwaterson I don't know where to start. Do androids dream of electric sheep?

@jimwaterson As a member of the party, I'm struggling to comprehend why my subs are being used to employ people to draw up enemy lists.

But one anti-Corbyn Labour MP really took the list to heart – he started wearing a "core group negative" badge around parliament.

John Spellar has made a "Core Group Negative" badge

Jim Waterson is a politics editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Jim Waterson at jim.waterson@buzzfeed.com.

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