Fourteen members of the shadow ministerial team defied Corbyn’s three-line whip in Wednesday’s vote, directly disobeying the Labour leader’s orders to back the Government’s White Paper on kickstarting the Brexit process.
But Corbyn – who now faces his second major rebellion since Labour’s shadow cabinet exodus in July last year – has reportedly decided a stern letter would suffice to deal with dissenters.
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Rebels will receive a written warning, and will be expected not to defy a three-line whip again.
Labour sources said the soft touch reaction was due to the “extraordinary circumstances” of the Brexit aftermath.
Corbyn reportedly believes it will “not be viable” for someone to remain in the shadow cabinet if they ignore another three-line whip.
The Labour leader failed to sack rebellious frontbench MPs.
He has also made clear this is the “final warning” to Brexit rebels on the issue, according to sources.
The Labour leader has now been forced to launch his fourth reshuffle less than a year and a half after taking office.
This comes amid speculation that Clive Lewis, who resigned his shadow cabinet role before the Brexit vote, has begun contacting MPs for support in a potential bid to oust the bungling Labour leader.
Clive Lewis is reportedly garnering support to attempt to oust Corbyn.
The Telegraph reports that left-wing commentator Owen Jones has spoken to MPs to test the waters for a base of support for Mr Lewis.
Recent polls have drawn attention to Corbyn’s calamitous tenure as Labour leader.
A survey by YouGov found Corbyn’s net favourability rating has fallen from -25 in August 2016 to -40 today.
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In a damning indictment of his performance, the study indicates even new Labour members and young supporters who turned voted out in droves to vote for Corbyn have started to waver in their support.
The Labour leader now has net unfavourable ratings in every age group from 18 to over-65s, as well as across all social classes in the UK.
And of those who voted Labour in 2015, 46 per cent see Corbyn as “unfavourable”, against 44 per cent who still see him in a positive light.
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