Geroge Galloway has announced that he will stand as an independent candidate in West Bromich East, against Labour Deputy Leader Tom Watson.
I am the Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for West Bromwich East constituency. I will stand as an Independent candidate supporting Brexit and the traditional values of the labour movement; the values of Tony Benn, Michael Foot, Barbara Castle, etc https://t.co/apIVxxQ0Rc
— George Galloway (@georgegalloway) 10 October 2019
Ignoring the fact, for the moment, that Galloway does echo traditional socialist prejudices against, for example, Israel, he is absolutely a die-hard Brexiteer.
It would also be wrong to underestimate Galloway. He has been a Member of Parliament for four constituencies firstly for Labour. However, he was expelled from Labour in 2003 for his controversial opposition to the Iraq War which included calling on Arabs to actively fight British troops.
Galloway has links to the Iranian regime and has appeared on Press TV, the Iranian state-tv which is run by the state. He hosted two comment shows on the channel and infamously conducted an “obsequeious” interview of the then Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
In 2005 he defeated Oona King, the then Labour MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, under the banner of the far-left Respect Party. He also managed to win the Bradford West seat for Respect.
Appearing on Celebrity Big Brother and dressing up in a catsuit damaged his credibility as a serious political figure.
Having said that, given the alienation of Labour’s working-class and Brexit-supporting base from its pro-Remain leadership, something that Watson typifies in so many ways, who could entirely rule out a fifth Westminster win for ‘Gorgeous George’?