Hoodlums have infiltrated the Labour party. They come in many forms, each scarier than the next. There are Tories seeking to condemn Labour to political oblivion; Communists hoping to control the Party; and throngs of other political villains hell-bent on destroying the last relics of the centre-left. According to some on the right of the Labour Party, we have to stop the leadership election before new members bring Labour to their knees.
I'm one the infiltrators. I'm a new member. I'm one the reasons Labour must apparently halt this election and stop the insanity. I'm not an entryist, but I support Jeremy Corbyn. To the right wing of the Labour Party, it's basically the same thing.
I became a member shortly after the election, not to exact my Marxist ploy, nor to ensure permanent Conservative rule. I joined because I want to play a part in the democratic process. I want to vote for the individual that I would like to lead the Party. I want the best for the Labour Party, as do the vast majority of new members.
It is ridiculous to suggest Labour should stop the election. Yes, there is a minor level of entryism, but nowhere near the level suggested by certain MPs. Simon Danzcuk argued that up to a third of Labour's new members are entryist villains. Danzcuk bases this sweeping assumption on a single document containing thirty names from one constituency. It's a baseless and embarrassing claim with the reliability of a pre-election YouGov poll.
Allow me to offer a similar sweeping assumption. Five of my friends and family have joined Labour since the general election. All these individuals have pure intentions. Therefore, based on my poll, 100% of Labour's new members have the interests of the party at heart. There are no entryists. This, of course, is a ridiculous statement, but no more ridiculous than Danzcuk's.
It's impossible to know how many members signed up to destroy the Party. What we do know, however, is that the vast majority of new members support candidates in earnest. Labour should welcome the surge in membership - politically and, of course, financially.
The young have signed up in droves - a source of optimism considering the low voting levels for under 25s. The previously politically apathetic are engaging in Labour politics - potentially attracting some of the near 35% of those that didn't vote in 2015. Long-time Labour supporters - such as myself - are signing up in the hope of becoming more involved in the future of the Labour Party.
It's not entryism that Labour's right abhors, but the impending result. They see Corbyn as a relic from the past, whereas new members see him as man of the future. Labour has been swept to the left - not because of Marxist or Tory entryism - but because Labour is a Party full of left wing supporters, new and old.
The Labour Party is strong at present - at least outside the Parliamentary Labour Party. New members are optimistic about the future and enthusiastic about further involvement in politics. Halting the leadership contest would cast a shadow over this optimism. If Corbyn wins, and there is credible evidence to suggest he will, then the right will have to accept the result. Suggesting Corbyn's rise is due to entryism, as opposed to genuine support from members, is a desperate and quite frankly embarrassing argument from MPs losing clout in the ranks of the Labour Party.