Whether it’s paranoia of widening their tight circle, or simply wanting to do favours for old friends, the top of the Labour Party is dominated by nepotism.
Of course, it may well be that Sebastian Corbyn was the best person for the job when John McDonnell hired him as Chief of Staff at 25 years old, and who’s to say John McDonnell’s son isn’t the best spinner in Labour’s press office? No-one can doubt the abilities of Ishmael Osamor as his mum, Kate’s speechwriter, for which she is so grateful she helped deselect two Labour councillors so he could have that job too.
However, when it comes to compromising democratic socialist values, the Murray family at least, as long-time members of the Communist Party, have the excuse of not being democratic socialists.
Andrew Drummond-Murray of Mastrick, son of a stockbroker and friend of Seumas Milne since they were in the same faction of the Communist Party, works as a part-time consultant in Jeremy Corbyn’s office, where he shares an office with his daughter Laura, Corbyn’s Head of Stakeholder Relations.
Susan Fiona Dorinthea Michie, whose mother left £52 million in her will, is the ex-wife of Andrew and mother to Laura Murray. She is also an active member of the Communist Party, famously once addressed a party meeting with the opening line “we, the working class.” True to her working-class roots, Michie helped pay her daughter’s salary with a £14,000 donation to the Labour Party in June.
The donation came just four months after Jeremy Corbyn’s spokesperson claimed, “we have moved away from large individual donations.” Although it’s not against Labour’s rules to accept donations from members of rival parties, with the Communist Party of Britain giving Labour its support during the General Election and this year’s local elections, and top positions in Labour being filled by former CPB members, its unclear whether the two can still really be considered ‘rivals.’