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Labour MPs pass a vote of no confidence in Jeremy Corbyn – what happens now?

172 no confidence votes to 40 in support of the Labour leader.

Labour MPs have voted that they have no confidence in their leader, Jeremy Corbyn.

Following a secret no confidence ballot, 172 MPs voted that they had no confidence in the Labour leader, to 40 who voted in support. There were 216 votes in total, out of 229 Labour MPs. There were 13 who abstained, and four spoilt ballots. That's a turnout of 95 per cent, with 80 per cent declaring no confidence in their leader.

The motion for a no confidence ballot was tabled by Margaret Hodge MP last week, following the British public voting for Brexit in the EU referendum. Corbyn's detractors accuse him of letting Labour down for failing to campaign successfully for a Remain vote.

The Labour press office comments:

"Following the ballot conducted today, the Parliamentary Labour Party has accepted the following motion:
 
"That this PLP has no confidence in Jeremy Corbyn as Leader of the Parliamentary Labour Party."

The outcome of the ballot comes after a wave of resignations from Corbyn's shadow cabinet, which have been arriving thick and fast since the weekend following the referendum result. It is thought that Corbyn now has yet to fill at least half of the positions in his shadow frontbench. If you're wondering who has resigned, check out our liveblog. And for who's been newly appointed to the shadow cabinet, our list is here.

Corbyn has responded to the outcome, informing his party that he will not stand down:

“In the aftermath of last week’s referendum, our country faces major challenges. Risks to the economy and living standards are growing. The public is divided.

“The Government is in disarray. Ministers have made it clear they have no exit plan, but are determined to make working people pay with a new round of cuts and tax rises.

“Labour has the responsibility to give a lead where the Government will not. We need to bring people together, hold the Government to account, oppose austerity and set out a path to exit that will protect jobs and incomes.

“To do that we need to stand together. Since I was elected leader of our party nine months ago, we have repeatedly defeated the Government over its attacks on living standards.

“Last month, Labour become the largest party in the local elections. In Thursday’s referendum, a narrow majority voted to leave, but two thirds of Labour supporters backed our call for a remain vote.

“I was democratically elected leader of our party for a new kind of politics by 60 per cent of Labour members and supporters, and I will not betray them by resigning. Today’s vote by MPs has no constitutional legitimacy.

“We are a democratic party, with a clear constitution. Our people need Labour party members, trade unionists and MPs to unite behind my leadership at a critical time for our country.”

So what happens now? If any MP wishes to challenge him, they can trigger a leadership contest. To do this, they will have to receive 50 nominations (the support of 20 per cent of Labour MPs and MEPs). Once they formally have this support, they have to write to the party's general secretary, Iain McNicol, announcing their intention to run. My colleague George has the latest on who is likely to challenge Corbyn.

The party rules on whether the incumbent automatically has a place on the leadership ballot are murky. Some believe he doesn't need to amass nominations all over again to stand. Others, particularly his opponents, point to legal advice sought by the party last year that suggests he would have to gain 50 nominations, like his challengers. They are clinging on to this interpretation, because they fear that Corbyn would simply be voted in again by the party's membership, which is significantly more left wing than the parliamentary party.

But even if Corbyn does have to collect this level of support, there's no guarantee that his unpopularity in the PLP would mean he would be unable to make the ballot. He received 36 nominations last time, so his support among MPs is actually up by four, according to the result of the no confidence ballot. Considering his difficulty gaining enough nominations last June (he received his final nomination minutes before the deadline), it is unlikely. But not impossible.

Yet there is equally no certainty that he would win among the membership, which returned him by a landslide last September. Lots of the new members and signed-up supporters are devastated about Brexit, and have been baffled by Corbyn's reticence about campaigning for Remain. (Of course, a cursory glance at his voting record by any of his fans would have proved that he really is the stubborn man of principle they so praise him for being: he has been a steadfast eurosceptic for decades). It's unlikely they wouldn't back him, considering how strongly they voted for him so recently. But, again, not impossible.

Anoosh Chakelian is senior writer at the New Statesman.

John Moore
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The man who created the fake Tube sign explains why he did it

"We need to consider the fact that fake news isn't always fake news at the source," says John Moore.

"I wrote that at 8 o'clock on the evening and before midday the next day it had been read out in the Houses of Parliament."

John Moore, a 44-year-old doctor from Windsor, is describing the whirlwind process by which his social media response to Wednesday's Westminster attack became national news.

Moore used a Tube-sign generator on the evening after the attack to create a sign on a TfL Service Announcement board that read: "All terrorists are politely reminded that THIS IS LONDON and whatever you do to us we will drink tea and jolly well carry on thank you." Within three hours, it had just fifty shares. By the morning, it had accumulated 200. Yet by the afternoon, over 30,000 people had shared Moore's post, which was then read aloud on BBC Radio 4 and called a "wonderful tribute" by prime minister Theresa May, who at the time believed it was a genuine Underground sign. 

"I think you have to be very mindful of how powerful the internet is," says Moore, whose viral post was quickly debunked by social media users and then national newspapers such as the Guardian and the Sun. On Thursday, the online world split into two camps: those spreading the word that the sign was "fake news" and urging people not to share it, and those who said that it didn't matter that it was fake - the sentiment was what was important. 

Moore agrees with the latter camp. "I never claimed it was a real tube sign, I never claimed that at all," he says. "In my opinion the only fake news about that sign is that it has been reported as fake news. It was literally just how I was feeling at the time."

Moore was motivated to create and post the sign when he was struck by the "very British response" to the Westminster attack. "There was no sort of knee-jerk Islamaphobia, there was no dramatisation, it was all pretty much, I thought, very calm reporting," he says. "So my initial thought at the time was just a bit of pride in how London had reacted really." Though he saw other, real Tube signs online, he wanted to create his own in order to create a tribute that specifically epitomised the "very London" response. 

Yet though Moore insists he never claimed the sign was real, his caption on the image - which now has 100,800 shares - is arguably misleading. "Quintessentially British..." Moore wrote on his Facebook post, and agrees now that this was ambiguous. "It was meant to relate to the reaction that I saw in London in that day which I just thought was very calm and measured. What the sign was trying to do was capture the spirit I'd seen, so that's what I was actually talking about."

Not only did Moore not mean to mislead, he is actually shocked that anyone thought the sign was real. 

"I'm reasonably digitally savvy and I was extremely shocked that anyone thought it was real," he says, explaining that he thought everyone would be able to spot a fake after a "You ain't no muslim bruv" sign went viral after the Leytonstone Tube attack in 2015. "I thought this is an internet meme that people know isn't true and it's fine to do because this is a digital thing in a digital world."

Yet despite his intentions, Moore's sign has become the centre of debate about whether "nice" fake news is as problematic as that which was notoriously spread during the 2016 United States Presidential elections. Though Moore can understand this perspective, he ultimately feels as though the sentiment behind the sign makes it acceptable. 

"I use the word fake in inverted commas because I think fake implies the intention to deceive and there wasn't [any]... I think if the sentiment is ok then I think it is ok. I think if you were trying to be divisive and you were trying to stir up controversy or influence people's behaviour then perhaps I wouldn't have chosen that forum but I think when you're only expressing your own emotion, I think it's ok.

"The fact that it became so-called fake news was down to other people's interpretation and not down to the actual intention... So in many interesting ways you can see that fake news doesn't even have to originate from the source of the news."

Though Moore was initially "extremely shocked" at the reponse to his post, he says that on reflection he is "pretty proud". 

"I'm glad that other people, even the powers that be, found it an appropriate phrase to use," he says. "I also think social media is often denigrated as a source of evil and bad things in the world, but on occasion I think it can be used for very positive things. I think the vast majority of people who shared my post and liked my post have actually found the phrase and the sentiment useful to them, so I think we have to give social media a fair judgement at times and respect the fact it can be a source for good."

Amelia Tait is a technology and digital culture writer at the New Statesman.