It appears that Liverpool Labour’s candidate for councillor of Kirkdale is happy to campaign with a declared racist…
Once again, the Labour Party in Liverpool has demonstrated disdain towards people in the city as racist ex-Lord Mayor is pictured campaigning with the party’s candidate for the Kirkdale ward.
Peter Brennan was stood down from his position in 2019 after it emerged that he had shared a video online comparing Black people to monkeys.
A little over two years on, and Brennan is unashamedly out and about campaigning in Kirkdale with David Hanratty who will be standing as a candidate in November’s by-elections.
What does this tell us about Labour in Liverpool, and more broadly? How would families feel having a declared racist turn up on their doorstep and sell you stories of how awful anybody other than Labour would be? The hypocrisy is palpable.
This is more evidence of Labour taking the electorate for granted, as well as the issues of hierarchies of racism within the party. All forms of racism must be taken seriously and treated equally, yet here we have a man who has caused untold distress to local Black people, proudly representing the red rosette.
Many local Labour Councillors have remained silent on the matter and refused to acknowledge Brennan’s emergence on the campaign. This is demonstrative of the derision towards residents and members across the ward, and the city more generally. Joe Hanson, current councillor for Kirkdale, can be seen pictured with his arm around Brennan. To allow a known racist to represent your movement is nothing short of embarrassing. It is shocking. The company you keep is very revealing. Another picture shows ex-Tory candidate William Coughlin alongside Brennan. The Labour machine of ex-Tories and racists is one that needs tackling head on.
One local Labour MP was explicit in calling out Labour and its local association with a known racist. Kim Johnson took to Twitter to state “what does it say about Labour’s pick for Kirkdale Ward that he campaigns alongside a declared racist who compared Black people to monkeys- and wasn’t investigated. This is not the message we should be sending to Labour members or votes. Talk about contempt”.
Contempt indeed, Kim.
A cowardly attempt to crop Brennan out of a photo of the campaign was made by the Merseyside Labour twitter account. This is the type of ‘action’ Labour takes to hide and protect racists, as opposed to choosing to stand against people with such abhorrent views. There is such apathy towards local Labour recently that this is the type of support they have to draw on.
It is clear here that Brennan’s procession back into public life on the back of David Hanratty’s campaign for councillor of Kirkdale throws up several suggestions. It suggests that Hanratty is happy to be on the scene with a racist. It suggests Brennan has no shame at all. And it suggests that this Labour campaign in the ward thinks that parading a racist on the doorstep won’t have much of an impact on votes from the good people of Kirkdale.
Liverpool deserves better than this. Kirkdale deserves better than this. Labour has continued to show, time and time again, that it is not fit for purpose and that it takes each voter for granted. Come the elections in November, Kirkdale should be the ward that sparks true change in this city by turning its back on a party that has taken them for granted for so long.