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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

London politics news LIVE: Growing storm over PM’s Jimmy Savile comments after Keir Starmer abuse

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Sister of murdered Jo Cox says ‘words have consequences’ after seeing Keir Starmer abuse footage

The sister of murdered MP Jo Cox has condemned the scenes outside Westminster yesterday.

Kim Leadbeater, who is the MP for Batley and Spen, said she was “incredibly angry and upset” by footage showing Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer being abused by an angry mob near Parliament on Monday afternoon.

She tweeted: “I keep thinking about Keir & David’s families & friends. But these things don’t just happen.

“Words have consequences, leaders have a duty to behave responsibly & politics is not a game.

“Our country deserves far better.”

Jo Cox was murdered while representing the West Yorkshire constituency in 2016.

Mrs Leadbeater was elected as the Labour MP for Batley and Spen in July 2021.

Read the full story by political reporter Rachael Burford here.

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Labour MP joins calls for PM to apologise for Jimmy Savile slur

Labour MP Dr Rosena Allin-Khan has demanded Boris Johnson to apologise for the Jimmy Savile slur against Sir Keir Starmer, after the Labour leader was surrounded by a mob near Parliament on Monday.

The MP for Tooting said: “I wasn’t there yesterday, I didn’t hear what was said, but I would make a general comment that the Prime Minister shouldn’t be looking in the dark corners of the internet for lies to smear his opponents but standing up for a better public discourse based on fact not fiction.

“Nobody wants to see people in public life hassled that way. That’s not the way we should be conducting ourselves,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

“If the Prime Minister is genuinely sorry for what happened yesterday then he should come to Parliament and apologise unreservedly for his smears, like many of his own MPs have called for,” he said.

“Words have consequences, and without a doubt we need to have more responsible leaders who fight fake news and conspiracy theories, not promote them.

“We know that when Boris Johnson made horrible Islamophobic slurs, we know that hate crimes against Islamic women, when he compared them to letterboxes, went up, without a doubt.”

Dr Allin-Khan joins a number of MPs, including 10 Conservatives and many from across the political spectrum, in calling for an apology.

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Technology minister defends PM over allegedly singing ‘I Will Survive’ to new director of communications

Technology minister Chris Philp has defended the prime minister over allegedly singing ‘I Will Survive’ to his new director of communications, Guto Harri.

Journalist Mr Harri, who has recently been appointed to Number 10, revealed the prime minister launched into the Gloria Gaynor number after he asked Boris Johnson about his chances of political survival.

But Chris Philp denied suggestions the prime minister was “laughing” at the British public.

He told Sky News: “I think it was a moment in lightness in what is a stressful time for a lot of people in public life.”

“I don’t think we should criticise someone for a moment of levity” in what is a stressful job, he said.

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Minister says treatment of Starmer ‘completely unacceptable’ but can’t be blamed on PM

Technology minister Chris Philp has called the incident involving Sir Keir Starmer in Westminster “completely unacceptable”.

He said the actions of the mob had “no place in a democracy” and “all of us across the political spectrum should condemn what we saw”.

Asked whether Boris Johnson was responsible for fuelling the mob, Mr Philp said: “I don’t think you can point to what the prime minister said as the cause of that.

“I don’t think you can blame him” over the mobs actions, he said.

He said that although the mob mentioned Jimmy Savile, they also mentioned Julian Assange, coronavirus and the opposition in general.

It comes amid fresh pressure on Mr Johnson to withdraw his baseless comments about Sir Keir Starmer’s failure to prosecute Jimmy Savile.

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Good morning

Good morning, the top stories on Tuesday are:

Boris Johnson is facing demands to apologise for the Jimmy Savile smear he levelled at Sir Keir Starmer after police had to rescue the Labour leader from a mob.

Meanwhile, the PM has warned Russian president Vladimir Putin that invading Ukraine would backfire and only serve to strengthen Nato. Mr Putin is adamant that Europe countries will be drawn into military conflict if Ukraine joins the defence alliance.

And much more coming up…. stay tuned for the latest developments in Westminster and around the UK.

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