Karie Murphy is not on the Halifax shortlist. Photo: YouTube screengrab
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Unite's Karie Murphy is not on the shortlist to be Labour candidate in Halifax

The former candidate for Falkirk, who was reinstated after a vote-rigging scandal, is not included in the Halifax selection list.

There are reports that Karie Murphy has been excluded from the Labour candidacy list in Halifax.

Murphy, Labour's former candidate in Falkirk – which was at the centre of a vote-rigging scandal last year – applied to stand for the marginal seat of Halifax last week.

She was suspended from the party last year, amid accusations that the union Unite had attempted to massage the selection process in her favour. She was cleared of wrongdoing and allowed back into the party.

If the union's preferred candidate has been kept off the shortlist in Halifax, there could be ugly words to come between them and Labour HQ.

Here's her statement:

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Lord Sainsbury pulls funding from Progress and other political causes

The longstanding Labour donor will no longer fund party political causes. 

Centrist Labour MPs face a funding gap for their ideas after the longstanding Labour donor Lord Sainsbury announced he will stop financing party political causes.

Sainsbury, who served as a New Labour minister and also donated to the Liberal Democrats, is instead concentrating on charitable causes. 

Lord Sainsbury funded the centrist organisation Progress, dubbed the “original Blairite pressure group”, which was founded in mid Nineties and provided the intellectual underpinnings of New Labour.

The former supermarket boss is understood to still fund Policy Network, an international thinktank headed by New Labour veteran Peter Mandelson.

He has also funded the Remain campaign group Britain Stronger in Europe. The latter reinvented itself as Open Britain after the Leave vote, and has campaigned for a softer Brexit. Its supporters include former Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg and Labour's Chuka Umunna, and it now relies on grassroots funding.

Sainsbury said he wished to “hand the baton on to a new generation of donors” who supported progressive politics. 

Progress director Richard Angell said: “Progress is extremely grateful to Lord Sainsbury for the funding he has provided for over two decades. We always knew it would not last forever.”

The organisation has raised a third of its funding target from other donors, but is now appealing for financial support from Labour supporters. Its aims include “stopping a hard-left take over” of the Labour party and “renewing the ideas of the centre-left”. 

Julia Rampen is the digital news editor of the New Statesman (previously editor of The Staggers, The New Statesman's online rolling politics blog). She has also been deputy editor at Mirror Money Online and has worked as a financial journalist for several trade magazines. 

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