Keir Starmer has, from some, a reputation of being trigger happy with dissenters from within his party and firing those who don't agree with him. From what I can find, he is only responsible for the following three sackings during his time as leader:

  • Sam Tarry, from the shadow cabinet, for picketing and improvising policy to the media. He’s still an MP, although might be facing deselection.
  • Rebecca Long-Bailey, from the shadow cabinet, for posting on Twitter that US police brutality was learnt from the Israelis. She is still an MP.
  • Angela Rayner, from the Labour Party chair, after a by-election defeat. She is still an MP, member of the shadow cabinet and deputy leader of the Labour Party.

To me, except for Tarry, these seem like politically-motivated reorganisations. None of them seem completely unreasonable and definitely not in the realm of simple "disagreement". However, that's my opinion.

My objective question has two parts:

  1. Besides these three, has Keir Starmer sacked any other Labour Party colleague (be they aides, staff, party members, 3rd party allies or consultants, MPs, shadow cabinet members, etc.) and why did he sack them?
  2. Compared to other contemporary UK political party leaders -- let's say, in the 21st Century -- is this less/more than average (significantly so)?
  • 5
    I think this question needs to nail down a more precise definition of what it means to be sacked - are we talking about dismissals outwith a reshuffle like Tarry and Long-Bailey, or are we including changes of positions in the Shadow Cabinet during a reshuffle, such as Rayner? Tarry wasn't actually dismissed from the Shadow Cabinet, but from a shadow ministerial position, so do we count him? Jeremy Corbyn had the Labour whip withdrawn, does that count? What about Claudia Webbe, who had the whip withdrawn after being charged with harassment?
    – CDJB
    Sep 26, 2022 at 10:50
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    According to the summary of this reasearch; demos.co.uk/files/Ministerial_Churn.pdf ministers spend on average 1.3 years in post. So the churn in government is huge.
    – Jontia
    Sep 26, 2022 at 11:35
  • Don't want to weigh in very much since UK politics isn't my thing. But wouldn't Starmer, after taking over from Corbyn, be saddled with potentially a large number of "dissidents" that represent the old guard which his own election was specifically meant to do away with? Labour went a certain way, voters found it problematic and a new boss was brought in - that implies more potential for churn than a continuation of policies under a new boss. So wouldn't this comparison have to be made to similar cases rather than run of the mill party leadership refreshes? Sep 27, 2022 at 1:26
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    Rebecca Long-Bailey's cited case being precisely an example of what people found problematic with Corbyn's team (though it was sometimes difficult to distinguish anti-Semetism from justified criticism of Israeli policies). Sep 27, 2022 at 1:29
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    @ItalianPhilosophers4Monica Part of the reason Starmer is controversial with the left of the party is that he didn't campaign on "doing away with" the previous administration but rather presented himself as a unity candidate who would keep the popular policies with a more electable frontman, then moved sharply to the right after election. Sep 27, 2022 at 8:27


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