Then came Mr Corbyn’s second meeting of the day, which proved, perhaps predictably, to be disastrous. His five soft-left shadow ministers, Lisa Nandy, Owen Smith, Nia Griffiths, Kate Green and John Healey had asked to see him with the intention of telling him they were going to support him, subject to certain assurances.
They were aghast when John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, “barged in” and hijacked the meeting, “lecturing” the MPs and vowing to fight on.
They wanted to ask Mr Corbyn how he would bring the party back together, but Mr McDonnell told them those who had resigned would be punished rather than brought back into the fold. The bunker mentality appalled them.
“They got a lecture from John McDonnell with Corbyn doing his best woodwork teacher impression,” a Labour source told The Telegraph.
“They came out and thought ‘Oh my God. Your plan is to carry on and change nothing?’. They had a chat and agreed to resign’.”
All five later quit, removing one of Mr Corbyn’s last support bases within the shadow cabinet.
Is this some Downfall problem, where they simply don’t understand? Or is McDonnell playing a blinder which gets him into the Leader’s office?