10 things we learnt from teaming up jme with jeremy corbyn

The pair took on all the big topics.

by Hattie Collins
18 May 2017, 10:15am

A few days ago, i-D invited Jeremy Corbyn to meet JME. The two had first 'connected' on Twitter in April, joining together to encourage young people to register to vote. As has been well covered, JME is among a number of MCs -- including Stormzy, Novelist and Akala -- to lend the Labour leader their support.

With both open to discussing things IRL, we joined JME as he went to meet Mr. C at Spoke, a café in Islington, the constituency where JC has been MP since 1983. Since the film's release, voter registration has increased by 4000%. Okay, it hasn't, but it sure has garnered a lot of attention and so, ahead of the registration deadline on 22 May, we picked out ten things you need to know. From hugshakes to haterz, just try and name a more iconic duo. We'll wait...

1. While the i-D crew rolled deep and the JC crew rolled semi-deep, JME turned up on his ones...
As his own manifesto goes, 'No PR, no publishing, no manager, no publishing'… JME's arrival was typically low-key. He popped along on Sunday simply to sit down and have a chat with our potential future leader. "What I want from this, first of all, is to get people to register to vote. That's my main goal. Before you vote, I want you to find out who you should be voting for and why you're voting for them. Have your reasons for why you're voting for someone, no matter who it is."

2. When the pair met, they neither hugged or shook hands...
Instead, they created, as Jeremy called it, a "hugshake".

3. Jeremy Senior wasn't the only Corbyn that JME met on Sunday...
Before the interview, one of Corbyn's sons and his grandson spotted Jamie on the street and asked for a quick picture. It was pretty adorable.

4. The interview took place at The Spoke, a self-described all day eatery in Islington...
In the heart of Corbyn's Islington constituency, The Spoke serves up all manner of food, including Corbyn's pick, a halloumi salad. Vegan non-drinker JME was already fully refreshed - "I ate before I came" - opting for a fizzy water. While most diners pretended to ignore the pair, who were tucked away semi-discreetly in the corner, after the interview, the pair were surrounded by grime and Labour fans politely requesting selfies.

5. The conversation lasted for a good 40 minutes; the film attempts to pick out the most meaningful parts of the conversation, which ranged from the youth vote…
"Even if who we want in power ends up in power, they can't do anything, you know?" said JME. "That's what we think. So, my question to you is, what would we notice? What would, say, young Kevin in Edmonton realise? What difference could be made?"

6. To JME admitting he'd never voted before…
"Sometimes we feel like we don't need to vote. It doesn't matter. No one has our best interests at heart anyway, so whatever happens, we're going to still struggle, we're still gonna grind, we're still gonna come through, and flourish at the end. Whereas now, we seem to be seeing someone that we can actually trust. Someone that's human!"

7. And Corbyn explaining why people might vote Conservative…
"Why do people vote Conservative? They probably have a view that some way or another their status is going to be protected," he said. "We're after making sure there's opportunities for everybody. I'm more interested in persuading people to vote for us and recognise what we're trying to do. There's a lot of enthusiasm out there. The numbers of people who are now registering to vote who weren't registered before is good. Voter registration dropped off over many years, particularly amongst young people. In the last election, less than half were under-25 voters, who are eligible to vote. I want it to be much, much higher. But voting is crucial for an election. But it's also, what we were saying earlier, political change comes from people."

8. To Corbyn's own unpopularity within the Labour party…
"In reality, there are half a million people who've joined the Labour party, we've got a Labour candidate in every constituency and we're absolutely on it to win this election. We've got people registering to vote, particularly young people who are not registered. Getting them to vote. And all our policies will come out this week, but basically it's what I'm talking about. It's about housing, it's about schools, it's about jobs, it's about opportunities, it's about cultural freedoms in our society."

9. We discovered that Corbyn has got bars...
JME: "[I saw something from 2016]... a personal attack. What was it again? It was something like, 'If my mum was here, she'd say tighten up your tie'.... That's like a childish takedown!"
Jeremy Corbyn: "It was very childish. It was [former Prime Minister David] Cameron claiming his mum was giving me some advice. So I said, 'Well, if my mum was here, her advice would be, 'You stick at what you believe in and you defend our health service.' That would have been my mum all the way through."

10. But eventually, it all came back to registering before the 22 May deadline...
"I wanted to find out what change does he hope somebody like me will see. And he definitely said health service, education… Things that are important. The main, main thing is to make sure people remember to register to vote. That's the most important thing."

To vote in the General Election on 8 June, register by 11:59pm on 22 May here


Text Hattie Collins
Photography Olivia Rose

Conservative Party
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