Lisa Forbes has been elected MP for Peterborough (Picture: PA)If Michael Gove should be forgiven for taking cocaine, Labour’s newest MP should be forgiven for ‘liking’ an antisemitic Facebook post, a senior Labour figure said.
Lisa Forbes, who won the Peterborough by-election two days ago, liked a post which referred to Theresa May ‘having a Zionist slave masters agenda’.
She said she didn’t realise the text was attached to the video, which showed solidarity with victims of the Christchurch terror attack.
Senior figures in her party supported her today, with leader Jeremy Corbyn saying she was ‘not a racist in any way’ following calls for her to be suspended.
Ms Forbes also commented under a post whose author claimed that Islamic extremists were the creation of the CIA and Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency.
Ms Forbes subsequently apologised for ‘not calling out these posts’ and promised to challenge anti-Semitism in future.
Jeremy Corbyn visiting Lisa Forbes the new MP for Peterborough (Picture: Rex)Barry Gardiner, the shadow international trade secretary, compared the situation to Michael Gove’s drug use, saying if the Cabinet minister is to be forgiven after revealing he took cocaine in the past, then she should be as well.
Speaking to BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show, Mr Gardiner said: ‘I found myself scrolling through tweets yesterday and by mistake I liked a tweet of one of my colleagues, which I immediately unliked actually.
‘But look, the point that you’re making I take it on board. She had apologised. She said that this was a careless error.’
Pressed on whether the party has a problem, Mr Gardiner said: ‘She has apologised. I think that she has said that she’s committed to fighting against anti-Semitism, to working with the Jewish community to ensure that they are confident that she is not anti-Semitic.
‘And that is something that she must now deliver on. But on a day when, you know you are, you’re going to be interviewing Michael Gove who’s asking to be forgiven for class A drugs use, I think if he can be forgiven for that, then Lisa Forbes can be forgiven for liking a tweet that she didn’t bother to read.
‘So in that perspective let’s move on.’
Mr Corbyn said any complaints about Ms Forbes would be investigated by the party system.