Margaret Hodge Tears Into 'Patronising' Reform UK's Richard Tice

Labour MP and leader of the former Brexit Party in tense exchanges.
Margaret Hodge and Richard Tice.
Margaret Hodge and Richard Tice.
Sky News

Labour’s Margaret Hodge has clashed with Reform UK’s Richard Tice during a heated exchange in the aftermath of the Lee Anderson Islamophobia row.

On Sky News, the veteran MP and the leader of the former Brexit Party had awkward exchanges over Reform UK’s apparent increasing influence.

The party has received more media coverage in recent weeks following its third place finishes in the Wellingborough and Kingswood by-elections – potentially splitting the Tory vote in future elections – and speculation over the possible defection of Anderson, who was suspended from the Tory parliamentary party after he refused to apologise for saying “Islamists” had “got control of (London mayor Sadiq) Khan and they’ve got control of London”.

The TV exchange got off to an uncomfortable start, with Hodge asking Tice not to “interrupt” her: “Let me put the argument and then I’ll give you plenty of time to respond.”

The former minister then took to task the argument that Reform UK is having an increasing influence on Westminster, pointing out that getting around 10% of the vote in by-elections pales compared to the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the 1980s: “I think the SDP were picking up much more. They were up at 23%. They never got a seat.”

She went on: “Your great, glorious president, whatever you would call him, he’s had more elections than I’ve had hot dinners and he’s managed to lose every single one.”

They also clashed over Reform UK’s so-called “contract with you”, in effect a draft manifesto. Tice told Hodge “you clearly haven’t read the contract properly” and “you clearly don’t understand it”, which led to Hodge describing her opponent as “patronising” – and unleashing another attack.

They also went back-and-forth over policing of pro-Palestine protests, with Hodge accusing Tice of being “bloody patronising”.

She added: “Honestly, you really are. I feel a misogynist attack on me in the way (you say) ‘you’re so ill-informed. You don’t know what you’re talking about’. I find that really offensive.”


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