Jared O’Mara, the newly elected MP for Sheffield Hallam, has been suspended from the Labour Party following a series of racist, homophobic and sexist comments made before he was elected. It has been alleged that O’Mara did not draw the party’s attention to these comments before being selected for the seat, with further allegations made about his recent conduct.
John McDonnell, the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, said that a number of Labour MPs had defended O’Mara until further revelations had been uncovered. McDonnell said:
“New information has come to light, so quite rightly the Labour Party has acted swiftly. He’s been suspended, the whip has been withdrawn”.
The Liberal Democrats have confirmed that they are selecting a candidate in case O’Mara is forced to resign from his role as an MP.
Lucy Powell, the Labour MP for Manchester Central, questioned whether O’Mara had lied to the party before seeking election as an MP. Speaking to ITV she said:
“One of the key questions you are asked when you become a candidate for the Labour Party — and you have to sign a contract to say this — is there anything in your past that would bring the party into disrepute? And I don’t understand how in all honesty Jared could have signed that paper”.