Angela Rayner says ‘I don't know the details of any reshuffle’
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The top of the Opposition has been caught in a bitter civil war after Sir Keir Starmer undermined a press conference hosted by Angela Rayner by starting a shadow cabinet reshuffle. Allies of the Labour deputy accused Sir Keir of “blindsiding” his elected colleague.
A row over who knew what when overshadowed most of Monday’s reorganisation of the Labour frontbench.
After several weeks of difficult headlines for the Tories, the internal Labour rows also provided a sigh of relief for Conservative MPs.
One, delighted with the way yesterday planned out, told Express.co.uk: “The reshuffle was a f*** up. It really was.
“Rayner is like an umbrella that you can’t put up in the rain, utterly useless.
“Neither of them have come off well from it.
“Starmer has clearly decided she is useless and has no problem blowing her up by sabotaging her press conferences.”
Another teased Ms Rayner by accusing Sir Keir of treating her like “a Christmas tree decoration”.
They told this website: “Rayner is what she is. I don’t think anyone thinks she’s a great intellectual powerhouse of the Left.
“Starmer can’t get rid of her so he’s clearly sidelined her.
“He’s just using her as a Christmas tree decoration.
“At the end of the day, Starmer can reshuffle his pack but it’s mostly jokers.”
Relishing the unrest at the heart of the Labour Party, they added: “Basically Labour are factionalised.
“Starmer is trying to move Labour back to the centre ground, which is good politics for him, but at the end of the day, he can’t distance himself for either the policies of Jeremy Corbyn or the Labour MPs who supported him.”
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A third said Labour had “made Boris’s day” with the shambolic way the Labour reshuffle was handled.
Ms Rayner was caught off-guard by the reshuffle, saying she was not aware of the plans to shake up the front bench while answering questions at a press conference on MPs standards.
Asked after her speech about Sir Keir’s move, Ms Rayner said she did not “know the details of any reshuffle” but that “we need some consistency in how we’re approaching things as an opposition”.
A spokesperson for Ms Rayner later added: “She was not aware of the details of the reshuffle and she was not consulted on the reshuffle.”
Sir Keir said: “We are a smaller, more focused Shadow Cabinet that mirrors the shape of the Government we are shadowing.
“We must hold the Conservative Government to account on behalf of the public and demonstrate that we are the right choice to form the next Government.”
Meanwhile, following the fallout, a senior Tory source said: “Reshuffle is already a shambles.
“If he can’t run his own front bench properly how can he pretend he could run the country.”
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