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Jeremy Corbyn officially in Labour leadership race after reaching 35 nominations

PUBLISHED: 15:36 15 June 2015 | UPDATED: 16:12 15 June 2015

MP for Islington North Jeremy Corbyn

MP for Islington North Jeremy Corbyn

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The MP for Islington North secured 35 nominations minutes before deadline to enter the contest

The left leaning MP who has held his seat since 1983 received crucial backing from MPs including Diane Abbott, Frank Field and Dennis Skinner to enter the Labour leadership race.

An hour before the noon deadline, Mr Corbyn needed nine more votes to secure his place in the contest alongside Andy Burnham, Liz Kendall and Yvette Cooper.

Mr Corbyn, who lives in Finsbury Park and was a vocal opponent of the Iraq war, launched his bid to enter the contest to represent the left and present a “clear anti-austerity” argument.

Mr Corbyn told The Daily Politics Show: “I fully acknowledge that some of my colleagues who nominated me might not necessarily agree with me on my views in many things, but they also felt that there needs to be full debate on policy in the party and I will obviously take part in this over the next three months and hope that the party emerges stronger and that it remains resolute in opposing the principles behind austerity and impoverishment of the poorest in Britain.”

Peter Spencer from betting giant Betfred revealed to the Gazette that Jeremy Corbyn’s odds had shortened dramatically since the announcement of his official place in the race, from 33/1 yesterday to 16/1 today.

“Although Jeremy is still the fourth favourite, this is a massive shortening of odds and could change further in the coming days. People have realised that there needs to be a debate in the Labour party, and Jeremy represents a completely different view from the other candidates.”

The four horse race will officially begin on Wednesday when the candidates will appear in a BBC Newsnight hustings.

The result of the contest will be officially announced on September 12.

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