Emily thornberry

Was this the BBC’s ‘Emily Thornberry’ moment?

Charlie Stayt and Naga Munchetty’s mocking of Robert Jenrick’s flag was unintentionally revealing of the BBC’s problems. It also made it clear that Tim Davie’s decision to shift hundreds of jobs outside London won’t solve the corporation’s quest for diversity. What instantly came to mind watching this interchange was another telling incident nearly seven years ago now, during the Rochester and Strood by-election. Ed Miliband had sent the Islington battlecruiser Emily Thornberry out on manoeuvres on the touchingly misplaced assumption that she would ‘bring out the vote’. She did, but not in the way intended. While touring the constituency, Thornberry snapped a picture of a modest house, festooned with large

Emily Thornberry scrapes through in the Labour leadership contest

Emily Thornberry has made it through to the second round of the Labour leadership contest, having secured the required number of nominations from MPs and MEPs at the eleventh hour. As I explained this morning, Thornberry had struggled to gain support from colleagues because of strained interpersonal relationships and her – somewhat unfair – reputation for sneering at working class voters. But her claim yesterday that she did have the numbers to get her over this threshold turned out to be true, and she will be the fifth candidate to go through to the next round. The others are Keir Starmer, Rebecca Long-Bailey, Lisa Nandy and Jess Phillips. Clive Lewis

Paul Embery: Labour is too much Hampstead, not enough Hartlepool

Arrived in Remain-on-sea (also known as Brighton) for Labour party conference. As an old-fashioned trade unionist hailing from a working-class heartland who supports Brexit, opposes mass immigration and doesn’t believe someone with a penis can be a woman, I feel about as welcome as a hedgehog at a nudist colony. The conference centre and fringe mills with the usual throng of delegates and activists. Many are unquestionably decent people fighting for a better world. But it is largely an army of the woke, liberal middle-classes and young toytown revolutionaries — as though the social services department at Camden council and the Labour club at the University of Sussex have arranged

Watch: Emily Thornberry’s strange concussion anecdote

Emily Thornberry took to the stage today at Labour conference to try and make the case for her party backing an unequivocally Remain position ahead of a potential second referendum. Perhaps wisely, the Shadow Foreign Sec opted to ditch her EU themed outfit from yesterday, but Thornberry still managed to cause a stir with her conference speech. In one section, Thornberry recounted the unfortunate moment that she was hit by a cab earlier this year, before segueing into a slightly salacious tour of her past: ‘When I got knocked off my bike by a black cab in July I was lying in a gutter near Westminster Central Hall, after my

Emily Thornberry refuses to sing from same hymn sheet as Corbyn

Although Jeremy Corbyn used his Andrew Marr interview to try to smooth over and move on from internal party rows at Labour conference, his colleagues appear to have other ideas. This morning, Corbyn ally Len McCluskey used a media appearance to say that pro-Remain shadow cabinet ministers must either get on side and sing ‘from the same hymn sheet’ on Corbyn’s Brexit plans – or ‘step aside’. He singled out Emily Thornberry for criticism: ‘My message to them, to Emily and anyone else, is to support your leader.’ However, McCluskey is to be left disappointed. Thornberry used a fringe event this lunchtime to reiterate her view that Labour should campaign

Will John McDonnell lock Tories up if Labour wins the next election?

Smiley, fluent and softly spoken, John McDonnell sometimes comes across as a bit cuddly. Yesterday Labour’s shadow chancellor was interviewed by Iain Dale at the Edinburgh festival. He said he’s looking forward to a boating trip on the Norfolk Broads. ‘My wife and I sail. But we sail badly. People get off the water when they see us coming.’ He felt he deserved a break after working with the Tories on a cross-party approach to the Withdrawal Agreement. ‘No one should have to sit opposite Michael Gove for six weeks. I did it for the country.’ Iain Dale quizzed him about Labour’s immediate threat: Boris. ‘The guy’s reckless. The guy’s

Labour chooses party political interest over tackling Commons bullying

Why has Labour decided to give John Bercow at least a stay of execution as Speaker? Emily Thornberry was asked about whether Bercow should go following Dame Laura Cox’s damning report on bullying and harassment in the House of Commons, and argued that she shouldn’t go. She told Sky News: ‘I think this is absolutely not the time to be changing Speaker. We don’t know for example with regard to Brexit as to what is going to happen, whether there’s going to be technically an amendable motion or not, whether it’ll be the Speaker’s discretion as to whether it is. We do need to have all hands to the deck

Emily Thornberry’s speech shows why Team Corbyn went cold on a female deputy | 25 September 2018

For those wondering why exactly Labour vetoed plans for a new female deputy leader this morning over fears the role could undermine Jeremy Corbyn, look no further than Emily Thornberry’s conference speech. This afternoon, the shadow foreign secretary offered a pretty good explanation as to why Corbyn’s allies had become nervous about the idea of promoting a woman to second in command. Fresh from talking movingly about her backstory in a fringe event (Isabel reports on part 1 of Thornberry’s leadership launch here), Thornberry gave her boss a run for his money with a crowd-pleasing – at times barnstorming – speech which neatly set out the clear blue water between herself and the

Isabel Hardman

Emily Thornberry’s leadership pitch, part 1

The Labour leadership may be rowing back from the idea of having a second, female, deputy leader, but that isn’t stopping those who, like Emily Thornberry, fancy a shot at the top job one day. While the Shadow Foreign Secretary was totally loyal to Jeremy Corbyn when she spoke at a Times fringe this lunchtime, she started by talking movingly about her backstory, touching also on the need for a leader who has experience of the frontbench, and repeatedly referred to the importance of members in the Labour Party. It is well-understood that Thornberry would, one day, like to run for leader, and today’s performance not only underlined that, but


Emily Thornberry’s low blow over Boris

Oh dear. As the speeches get underway on day two of Labour conference, Emily Thornberry has kicked off proceedings with a low blow aimed at the Foreign Secretary. Rather than attack her opposite number for his policies alone, the shadow foreign secretary appeared to try and make a jibe about Boris Johnson’s personal life as she went on the offensive over Brexit: ‘Let’s all take a second to sympathise with poor old Boris. Come on, just a second. He’s not been happy lately. Apparently he’s sick of being blamed for the way that Brexit is going, and all the broken promises of the leave campaign. I’m sorry, what? Like, what?

Sunday shows round-up: Emily Thornberry – ‘I really think Amber Rudd should quit’

The Shadow Foreign Secretary has called for the Home Secretary to resign over the Windrush debacle that has been dominating the newspaper headlines over the past week. The government has u-turned and apologised after threatening to deport Caribbean migrants who could not provide proof of their decades of residence in the UK, with some of those affected having been refused jobs and access to healthcare as a result. To add insult to injury, it was revealed that the Home Office had destroyed the landing cards for immigrants who arrived aboard HMT Empire Windrush, thereby removing a vital source of documentation. The government has since said that it will provide compensation

The return of Lady Muck

My sainted mum was of untarnished working-class blood — she worked, variously, as a cleaner, factory hand and shop assistant — and like most women of her kind who grew up before the 1960s, she never swore. Not a ‘bitch’, ‘slut’ or ‘slag’ ever passed her lips, though she certainly loathed a lot of women and always had at least two feuds on the go. In her eyes, using words like that would have made her just as bad as the targets of her disapproval. No, her ultimate diss for females she disliked was ‘Lady Muck’. It’s a delightfully descriptive phrase and, having heard a lot from both Emily Thornberry

Sunday shows round-up: Emily Thornberry says Britain is heading for ‘no deal’

Emily Thornberry – Britain is heading for ‘no deal’ The Shadow Foreign Secretary has warned that the United Kingdom is on the path to receive a ‘no deal’ outcome if the government continues to pursue Brexit negotiations in the manner it has been so far. Speaking to Andrew Marr, Thornberry was keen to stress the disadvantages that a no deal scenario would bring to the UK. However, Marr pressed Thornberry about her assertion that that there was ‘deadlock’ between the government and the EU: AM: You say there is deadlock, but directly Donald Tusk says ‘After Prime Minister May’s intervention my impression is that reports of deadlock between the EU

Emily Thornberry outshines Damian Green – and Corbyn – at PMQs

Mrs May couldn’t make PMQs today. She was lunching with royalty up at the Palace. The happy atmosphere of the event may have been affected by territorial anxieties. The Queen’s principal guest, King Felipe VI, reigns over important parts of the Spanish mainland but not the pointy little bit down at the bottom which is full of pubs and red phone boxes. MPs were keen to ask the government to re-assert Britain’s possession of Gibraltar. And some believe that this claim should extend to other historically British regions: Malaga, Torremolinos and Ibiza. Mrs May’s place was taken by the recently elevated Damian Green. His personality is like his skull. Smooth,

Thornberry’s BBC gaffe: ET can’t phone home

Poor old Emily Thornberry. Labour is having a torrid time in the local elections and during her appearance on the BBC this morning, things took a turn for the worse for the shadow foreign secretary. Thornberry – who Mr S previously revealed is known as ET by Jeremy Corbyn — was there to try and defend Labour’s dire results. The only sticking point? ET could not phone home. Alas, her phone wasn’t working so she couldn’t stay in touch with Labour HQ. Thornberry spent several minutes attempting to get her mobile to work before a worried Huw Edwards stepped in to ask her what was wrong: ‘It’s not even my iPhone. I don’t

Labour’s General Election plan is already coming unstuck

What does it mean to be rich? That’s the question already getting the Labour party into a tangle as it struggles to get its act together ahead of the snap general election. Yesterday, John McDonnell said a Labour government would send a higher tax bill the way of all workers earning over £70,000. The shadow chancellor said simply that those earning more than that amount were ‘rich’ and should ‘pay their way more’. A straightforward policy, you might think. But today, it seems, there is already confusion in the ranks. Emily Thornberry on the Today programme aimed her fire at the ‘elite’ – doing her best to define this group

What Corbyn calls Lady Nugee

Last week Mr S revealed that Jeremy Corbyn and Seumas Milne had come up with affectionate nicknames for one another. The Labour leader refers to his director of strategy and communications as TGM, which stands for ‘The Great Milne’. Meanwhile, Milne in turn refers to his boss as TSL — ‘The Supreme Leader’, natch. So, what of the rest of their colleagues? Well, it turns out that Corbyn has a penchant for acronyms and abbreviations — referring to Emily Thornberry as ‘ET’. Only going to confirm Mr S’s suspicions that Team Corbyn really are living on another planet…

Lady Nugee blames fake news for Labour’s defeat in Copeland

Labour is doing its share of soul searching this morning following its disastrous defeat in the Copeland by-election. There are many reasons being put forward for why the Tories were able to snatch the seat from Labour. But Emily Thornberry thinks she knows exactly why Labour lost: fake news. Lady Nugee suggested that the ‘big worry’ about the future of the Sellafield nuclear power plant was the decisive factor in voters abandoning Labour. And she said that the party was defeated because ‘word had got out that Jeremy is not in favour of nuclear power’: ‘That isn’t true, that is what you call fake news’ Nugee went on to say

Watch: Emily Thornberry’s opposition blues on Question Time

On Thursday, Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet found themselves in disarray after the Labour leader suggested he would issue a three-line whip for MPs to vote to trigger Article 50. This upset many in his party as they had hoped he would make Labour’s consent — at the very least — conditional upon certain details being revealed or caveats regarding Britain’s possible future as a tax haven. So, with that in mind, brains at Labour decided the best plan of action was to send Emily Thornberry on Question Time to field questions on the matter. Alas the shadow foreign secretary soon found herself under fire from all sides as Chris Grayling took issue with

Labour remembers what it’s like to be an effective opposition

Is Labour actually managing to do its job as a decent opposition? Yesterday, the party forced the government into a U-turn over whether the Prime Minister must reveal her plan for Brexit negotiations before triggering Article 50. This was over an Opposition Day debate, which leads to a vote that is not binding on the government, and is therefore normally safe to ignore. Ministers have been even more relaxed about these debates over the past few months given Labour has little political heft at the moment, and has on occasion used its Opposition Day slots as a means of internal party management, such as the debate on Yemen. But last