A bitter war of words erupted yesterday between Sir Keir Starmer and a former Labour MP bidding to destroy him in a crucial Northern by-election next week.
George Galloway said Sir Keir will be brought down as Labour leader 'in a puff of wokery' in the Batley and Spen contest in Yorkshire.
Mr Galloway, who is standing in the by-election, said Labour will lose because of its 'trans-mania infatuation' contempt for the 'white English working class', its opposition to Brexit, and Sir Keir's failings.
The Labour leader had 'no personality' and was 'so wooden the birds are trying to nest in him', Mr Galloway told the Daily Mail.
But Sir Keir hit back by accusing Mr Galloway of turning the by-election into a 'circus'.
George Galloway (pictured) said Sir Keir will be brought down as Labour leader 'in a puff of wokery' in the Batley and Spen contest in Yorkshire
Asked about Mr Galloway's remarks, he said: 'If Galloway has got something to say, he should talk about the people of Batley and Spen instead of talking about himself or me.'
According to the polls, the Tories are poised to win the 'Red Wall' seat from Labour next Thursday.
Mr Galloway is standing for the Workers' Party on a pro-Palestine and 'anti-woke' ticket in Batley and Spen, where nearly one in five voters are Muslim. He is tipped to win enough votes from disaffected Labour voters to inflict another shattering defeat on the party in its heartland and increase the risk of Sir Keir being forced to resign.
Mr Galloway, 66, has been a controversial political figure for many years. After becoming a Labour MP in 1987, he was thrown out of the party in 2003 largely because of his fervent opposition to the war in Iraq. He sparked controversy when he told Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein: 'I salute your courage, strength and indefatigability.'
Embattled Sir Keir yesterday recruited Tony Blair's former adviser Matthew Doyle as his interim head of communications in his latest attempt to stop the Labour rot. But Mr Galloway said Sir Keir could not replicate Mr Blair's electoral success.
'Starmer is a block of wood, so wooden the birds are trying to nest in him. He is Blair without any of the polish. In the 24-hour TV media age you cannot prosper when you have no personality or colourful character. Starmer is a desiccated calculating machine that has gone haywire.'
The Labour leader had 'no personality' and was 'so wooden the birds are trying to nest in him', Mr Galloway told the Daily Mail
Tellingly, when this newspaper asked Sir Keir yesterday whether he considered Batley to be a 'must-win seat,' he declined to say so.
Instead, he turned his fire on Mr Galloway: 'It tells you everything you need to know about the other candidates that they want to turn the by-election into a story about themselves or a story about me when it ought to be about the people of Batley and Spen.'
Sir Keir said Mr Galloway was no match for 'outstanding' Labour candidate Kim Leadbeater, the sister of the area's former Labour MP Jo Cox, who was murdered by a Right-wing extremist in 2016.
Sir Keir's Left-wing deputy Angela Rayner and Blairite ex-Cabinet minister Andy Burnham, currently Mayor of Greater Manchester, are seen as possible successors if he is forced to stand down.
Mr Galloway said: 'At least Burnham and Rayner speak human.'
He added: 'Labour is going out in a puff of wokery. Its trans-mania infatuation has turned off millions. The visceral dislike of Labour on white English working-class estates is palpable. People have concluded Labour doesn't like them – and they heartily reciprocate.'
He said former Speaker and ex-Tory Remainer John Bercow joining Labour had enraged pro-Brexit Labour voters. 'Bercow twisted every parliamentary rule to try to cheat the British people out of Brexit.
'Now Labour has got Little Napoleon Bercow in its breast pocket.'