Sky Presenter Dermot Murnaghan was accused of sexism today by Labour’s Shadow Foreign Secretary after he asked her to name prominent international politicians.
In a tetchy and uncomfortable interview on Sky News this morning, Emily Thornberry blasted the presenter for asking “pub quiz” questions during discussions on Brexit and North Korea’s nuclear weapons programme.
An angry Thornberry was unable to name either French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault or South Korea President Park Geun-hye during the discussion.
She claimed Murnaghan did not ask similar questions to male politicians such as David Davis and Liam Fox.
After the discussion shifted to Labour’s problems with anti-Semitism, Thornberry claimed there was more to be done on society on a range of issues, including sexism.
“Sometimes when it comes to sexism, some Sky presenters need to look at themselves too,” she said, and then added: “It really upsets me that every time I come on here you do another pub quiz with me because you do not do it with anybody else and I do think it’s patronising.”
After Murnaghan said he was only asking questions related to her brief as Shadow Foreign Secretary, Thornberry replied: “Let’s take this off air because I’ve got a lot to say to you and I don’t think a lot of it ought to be broadcast.”
Thornberry’s clash with Murnaghan proved a major talking point on social media this morning, with many shocked by her defensive attitude.
Some defended Thornberry’s comments.
In 2014 Thornberry resigned from the Labour frontbench after tweeting a photo of a house in Rochester which was displaying St George’s flags and had a white van in the driveway.
She was accused of snobbery after captioning the photo “image from #Rochester”.
She later told the Mail Online: “It was a house covered in British flags. I’ve never seen anything like it before.”
“It had three huge flags covering the whole house. I thought it was remarkable. I’ve never seen a house completely covered in flags.”