Labour suspends council candidate who attacked 'Jewish hate-mongers'

Paul Connolly attacked MPs Dame Margaret Hodge and Luciana Berger


A Labour council candidate has been suspended after he was revealed to have complained about “Jewish hate-mongers” and attacked Jewish MPs on social media.

Paul Connolly, who is standing in Almondbury a village south-east of Huddersfield, also accused “right-wing Jewish forces” and a “Tory section of the Jewish community who have hijacked the Jewish religion” of undermining Jeremy Corbyn.

In the tweets, Mr Connolly poured vitriol on a group of female Labour MPs, including Dame Margaret Hodge, Angela Smith and Luciana Berger.

He alleged that Dame Margaret had been “bought by Israel long ago”, and that Ms Berger, who quit the party over antisemitic abuse in February 2019, had “weaponised” antisemitism and had “damaged her own religion & people”.

He accused former Labour MP Joan Ryan of receiving “£1m+ from Israel to subvert democracy in the UK. This is a treacherous act by her on behalf of her Israeli paymasters.”

As of 12pm on Monday, all these posts remained online. All the tweets were written since 2017.

Never Again, a Twitter account which was set up to combat antisemitism online, drew attention to the tweets, claiming that he had been “reported to the party a year ago but he hasn’t even been suspended”.

The JC understands that Mr Connolly has been now administratively suspended from the party pending an investigation.

A party spokesperson said: “The Labour Party takes all complaints of antisemitism extremely seriously and they are fully investigated in line with our rules and procedures, and any appropriate disciplinary action is taken."

Mr Connolly also wrote, “the attacks & lies against the left claiming antisemitism are funded by Israel,” adding: “These attacks are not about AS but about silencing critics of Israel's crimes against Palestine.”

Mr Connolly also believed that Israel was conducting “infiltration” of parliament and “buying Traitors”.

In the lead-up to the 2019 election, he wrote that Israel “will throw the whole of the Jewish race under a bus” to prevent a Jeremy Corbyn-led government and that British rabbis were taking cues from Israel.

Mr Connolly also compared Job Centre staff to “Nazis during the Holocaust” and Department of Work and Pensions staff to “Auschwitz guards”.

Mr Connolly is standing against Conservative councillor Bernard McGuin, who was previously suspended from his party after complaints that he had made racist tweets before his election.

A pinned tweet on Mr Connolly’s account reminds voters of Mr McGuin’s suspension. “Remember this?” he asks, “This is the man who wants your vote in May 2020.”

Mr Connolly is making his second bid to sit on Kirklees council, after failing to be elected in 2018.

All 23 Kirklees council seats are being contested on May 7, as Labour seeks to retain its one-seat majority.

The JC approached Hudderfield CLP for comment.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive