Profile: Labour MP Rebecca Long-Bailey


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Media captionRebecca Long-Bailey: What you need to know about the Labour leadership candidate

Rebecca Long-Bailey has been sacked as shadow education secretary for sharing an article containing an “anti-Semitic conspiracy theory”.

The former Labour leadership contender was a member of Sir Keir Starmer’s frontbench for less than three months.

So what do we know about her?

In Parliament

Mrs Long-Bailey joined the Labour Party in 2010 and went on to be selected as Labour’s 2015 election candidate for Salford and Eccles.

She won the backing of the union, Unite, and Salford’s mayor, and went on to win the seat with a majority of nearly 13,000 and a vote share of 49.4%.

Mrs Long-Bailey was one of 36 Labour MPs to nominate Jeremy Corbyn for the party’s leadership in 2015. When he won the contest, she was made shadow Treasury minister and remained a key figure in his frontbench team.

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Mrs Long Bailey is close to John McDonnell and has worked closely with him

In 2016, she was made shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, and in 2017 was promoted to shadow business secretary.

At the 2017 and 2019 elections, Mrs Long-Bailey was re-elected with 65.5% and 56.8% of the vote respectively.

With the resignation of Mr Corbyn as Labour leader, Mrs Long-Bailey threw her hat into the ring in 2020 for the party’s top job.

Leadership bid

Launching her bid to replace Jeremy Corbyn as leader in January, she said in an article for Tribune magazine that Labour needed a “socialist leader who can work with our movement, rebuild our communities and fight for the policies we believe in”.

She was backed by then shadow chancellor John McDonnell, as well as now deputy leader Angela Rayner, with whom Mrs Long-Bailey shares a flat in London.

But those who blamed Mr Corbyn for Labour’s election defeat accused her of being too similar to him.

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Media captionRebecca Long-Bailey reiterates her support for Mr Corbyn

In an interview with ITV, she gave Mr Corbyn “10 out of 10” when asked to rate his leadership.

Mrs Long-Bailey lost to Sir Keir in April’s contest, but was given the job of shadow education secretary by the new Labour leader.

Personal life

Mrs Long-Bailey was born in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester, in 1979. Her father was a former docker, and she has often spoken about how his experiences influenced her politics.

She started work in a pawn shop and also worked in call centres, a furniture factory and the post service.

Mrs Long-Bailey studied politics and sociology at Manchester Metropolitan University, and later studied law via part-time courses.

Her husband Stephen works for a chemicals company and they have a six-year-old son.

Before Parliament

Mrs Long-Bailey worked for a law firm – specialising in landlord and tenant cases – before becoming a solicitor in 2007.

She then specialised in commercial law, commercial property and NHS contracts.



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