Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has been warned that more of his MPs will jump ship unless he listens to their concerns over Brexit and anti-semitism.
Ian Austin, Ian Murray and Tom Watson were among the MPs sounding the alarm bells today following the decision of seven Labour MPs to quite the party to form a new alliance, the Independent Group.
Jewish MP Luciana Berger said she had decided to leave Labour because she was "embarrassed and ashamed" to remain in it while the leadership "wilfully failed to address hatred of Jewish people in its ranks".
The other members that left were former shadow chancellor Chris Leslie, Chuka Umunna, Mike Gapes, Angela Smith, Ann Coffey and Gavin Shuker, who all cited concerns around party culture and Brexit as their reason for quitting.
Yesterday evening party chairman Ian Lavery addressed a room of Labour MPs. Jewish MP Ruth Smeeth was reduced to tears as she pleaded with the party leadership to tackle anti-semitism in the party.
This morning Austin told the BBC that others would "think hard" about leaving the party unless its problems were addressed. He said Lavery failed to "demonstrate the leadership" and did not understand "the scale of the problem we have" with anti-Semitism within its ranks.
"If that is the best the leadership can do, I can see more people taking the same course of action," he said.
"I think it will result in people thinking long and hard about their position in the party."
Meanwhile some MPs reacted with disbelief that former Militant member Derek Hatton had been readmitted into the party after 30 years.
Austin tweeted: https://twitter.com/IanAustinMP/status/1097761149028892672
Stephen Kinnock, who father and former Labour leader Neil Kinnock clashed with Hatton in the 1980s, tweeted:
Derek who? https://t.co/qV8Yr11NH6
— Stephen Kinnock (@SKinnock) February 19, 2019
‘We have an interview with Derek Hatton on rejoining the Labour party’ are words I never thought I would hear on @BBCr4today
— Andrew Adonis (@Andrew_Adonis) February 19, 2019