Sir Keir Starmer punishes Angela Rayner for her ‘Tory scum’ rant by ‘sidelining’ her in favour of Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves
- Insiders say Sir Keir will increasingly take Ms Reeves’s counsel over Ms Rayner’s
- It comes amid claims party’s Right is attempting to push Sir Keir into their camp
- Allies of deputy leader hit back at any suggestion that she was being demoted
- Ms Rayner last month called Boris’ party ‘homophobic, racist, misogynist scum’
Sir Keir Starmer is set to punish Angela Rayner for her ‘Tory scum’ rant by sidelining her in favour of Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves, party insiders claim.
They say the Labour leader will increasingly take Ms Reeves’s counsel over deputy leader Ms Rayner’s and appear more with the Shadow Chancellor at key public events.
The move comes amid claims that the party’s Right is making co-ordinated efforts to push Sir Keir into their camp and banish the ‘unelectable’ Left.
Sources say Right-winger Wes Streeting told a Shadow Cabinet meeting: ‘Every day, we should drag a sacred cow of our party to the town market place and slaughter it until we are up to our knees in blood.’
Last night, allies of Ms Rayner hit back at any suggestion that she was being demoted, pointing out that she was elected by party members.
Concern: Deputy leader Angela Rayner ahead of the keynote speech of Sir Keir Starmer at the Labour Party conference in Brighton on September 29
One said: ‘It’s the party rank-and-file who picked Angela to be the party’s deputy leader – not Sir Keir.’
However, the claims come amid reports of frustration by Labour colleagues at Ms Rayner’s behaviour, focusing on her attack on the Tories at last month’s Labour conference.
In a tirade that stunned friends and foes alike, Ms Rayner branded Boris Johnson’s party as ‘homophobic, racist, misogynist scum’.
The comments led to Tory accusations that she had descended into gutter politics.
They also embarrassed Sir Keir, who said he would not have used that language. However, he stopped short of calling for her to apologise.
The embarrassment has only deepened after Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle appealed for political discourse to be ‘kinder and based on respect’ in the wake of the killing of Tory MP Sir David Amess.
The row was reignited at last week’s private meeting of the Shadow Cabinet at Westminster.
The Mail on Sunday understands that key Starmer ally Baroness Jenny Chapman condemned Ms Rayner’s remarks as ‘unacceptable’ and claimed they ‘harmed our electoral chances’ as Labour needed to win back voters who defected to the Tories at the last Election.
Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer Rachel Reeves at the Labour Party conference on September 29. The move comes amid claims that the party’s Right is making co-ordinated efforts to push Sir Keir into their camp and banish the ‘unelectable’ Left
Ms Rayner was not at Westminster last week because of a family bereavement. But a source said Shadow Cabinet colleagues nodded their agreement as Lady Chapman spoke. They added: ‘We are trying to win back voters in the North and Midlands – the so-called “Red Wall” – who went over to the Tories at the last Election. In what world does it help to brand those people as scum and misogynists?
‘It’s not just Keir’s inner circle who are fed up over this. There’s increasing disquiet across the Shadow Cabinet at Angela’s behaviour.’
Sir Keir’s office declined to comment on remarks made at the Shadow Cabinet but insisted that talk of sidelining Ms Rayner was ‘nonsense’. Mr Streeting also declined to comment.
A spokesman for Ms Rayner said: ‘Angela is currently on bereavement leave and looks forward to being back at work firing on all cylinders.’
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