Angela Rayner, deputy leader of the Labour Party, appears to have made it a mission of hers to hilariously slam Boris Johnson’s government at every turn – here are some of her best putdowns
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A story in the Mail on Sunday claimed that Rayner aimed to put Prime Minister Boris Johnson “off his stride” by crossing and uncrossing her legs while sitting opposite him, according to a cowardly unnamed Conservative MP.
It said: “Tory MPs have mischievously suggested that Ms Rayner likes to distract the PM when he is in the dispatch box by deploying a fully-clothed Parliamentary equivalent of Sharon Stone’s infamous scene in the 1992 film Basic Instinct.
“It is also suggested she employs the tactic when sitting next to Sir Keir when he faces Mr Johnson at PMQs.”
What have MPs said about the comments?
In condemnation of the comments, Johnson tweeted: “As much as I disagree with Angela Rayner on almost every political issue, I respect her as a parliamentarian and deplore the misogyny directed at her anonymously today.”
Meanwhile, Rayner’s boss Sir Keir Starmer said: “The sexism and misogyny peddled by the Tories is a disgraceful new low from a party mired in scandal and chaos.”
Ms Rayner herself described the move as a “perverted smear”, tweeting: “Women in politics face sexism and misogyny every day – and I’m no different.
“This morning’s is the latest dose of gutter journalism courtesy of @MoS_Politics.”
She added in the thread: “The PM who is dragging the Conservative Party into the sewer – and the anonymous Tory MPs doing his bidding are complicit.
“He and his cheerleaders clearly have a big problem with women in public life.”
But it isn’t the first time Rayner has slammed Conservative benches during Johnson’s government.
Angela Rayner’s best Boris Johnson takedowns
In January 2022, Angela Rayner drew laughter for her snub of the Prime Minister and appearing ‘queen-like’ as she wafted away his attempted putdown.
Speaking about the government’s pandemic response, Johnson said: “When the history of this pandemic comes to be written, and the history of the Labour Party comes to be written – and believe me, they are history and will remain history, Mr Speaker – it will show that we delivered while they dithered.
“And we vaccinated while they vacillated.”
However, when the camera flashed over to Labour’s deputy leader she could be seen offering a slow, unblinking wave to the Tory benches.
Speaking to the Express, body language expert Dr Lillian Glass said the PM “was taken aback as he stammered ‘It will show, it will show’ and pointed his finger in anger while looking directly at her and then he turns his head away from her to the side to regain his composure.”
Earlier that month, Rayner had another shot at Johnson while she discussed the enormous inflation rates that have been causing havoc nationwide.
She told him that inflation rates hadn’t been as high since there was a “Tory party mired in sleaze with a divided party and a Prime Minister losing support and governing shambolically,” before adding: “Sound familiar?”
Back in September 2020, Labour leader Keir Starmer was forced into isolation after picking up Covid-19. Angela Rayner stepped up and delivered a damning putdown to the PM.
Julian Hamilton/Sunday Mirror)
Speaking about a shortage of Covid tests she pulled in another scandal of his government, saying: “Next time a man with Covid-19 symptoms drives from London to Durham it will probably be for the nearest Covid test.”
In the speech, she also said: “The PM has put his faith in Operation Moonshot. Meanwhile, on Planet Earth, there are no NHS tests available for high infection areas.”
Rayner hasn’t aimed all her best shots at Johnson himself though, with his cabinet appointments very much in the firing line.
Johnson made him his education minister, but his appointment was met by a tweet from Rayner that simply said: “Hey congrats @GavinWilliamson I look forward to educating you” followed by a grinning emoji with its tongue out.