Angela Rayner Condemns 'Perverted' Accusation She Uses 'Basic Instinct Ploy'

"Their attempts to harass and intimidate me will fail."
Ian Forsyth via Getty Images

Angela Rayner has accused allies of Boris Johnson of peddling “perverted smears” against her.

According to the Mail on Sunday, some Tory MPs believe Labour’s deputy leader tries to distract the prime minister by “crossing and uncrossing her legs” during PMQs.

The newspaper branded it a “Basic Instinct ploy” by Rayner to put Johnson “off his stride”.

In response, Rayner said: “Women in politics face sexism and misogyny every day - and I’m no different. This morning’s is the latest dose of gutter journalism.

“I stand accused of a ‘ploy’ to ‘distract’ the helpless PM - by being a woman, having legs and wearing clothes. I am conspiring to ‘put him off his stride’. The rest I won’t repeat - but you get the picture.

“Boris Johnson’s cheerleaders have resorted to spreading desperate, perverted smears in their doomed attempts to save his skin. They know exactly what they are doing. The lies they are telling.”

Johnson also distanced himself from the story. “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,” he said on Twitter.

Rayner added: “The potted biography is given - my comprehensive education, my experience as a care worker, my family, my class, my background. The implication is clear.

“But it is 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. They should be ashamed of themselves.

“I won’t be letting their vile lies deter me. Their attempts to harass and intimidate me will fail.

“I’ve been open about how I’ve had to struggle to get where I am today. I’m proud of my background, I’m proud of who I am and where I’m from - but it’s taken time.

“I hope this experience doesn’t put off a single person like me, with a background like mine from aspiring to participate in public life. That would break my heart.

“We need more people in politics with backgrounds like mine - and fewer as a hobby to help their mates.”

Oliver Dowden, the Conservative Party chairman, told Sky News on Sunday morning he believed the story was “totally ludicrous”.

Rachel Reeves, the shadow chancellor, branded the story “disgusting” and “misogynistic”


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