Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner to stand in Labour deputy leadership race
Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner has allegedly announced that she is going to stand in Labour deputy leadership race to replace Tom Watson as Labour’s deputy leader.
She is alleged to be the fourth Labour MP to declare her intention to run, alongside Dawn Butler, Richard Burgon, and Khalid Mahmood.
In a statement, Ms Rayner said that Labour now faced a stark choice after December’s heavy election defeat – “win or die”. The Party’s ruling body has decided that both, the new leader and deputy leader will be announced on April 4 April.
Clive Lewis, Jess Phillips, Lisa Nandy, Sir Keir Starmer and Emily Thornberry have formally entered the race in order to replace outgoing leader Jeremy Corbyn.
Rebecca Long Bailey Shadow business secretary , who is also a friend and flat mate of Ms Rayner, is also expected to join the main contest soon.
Labour is yet to decide rules for leadership battle
While launching her deputy leadership bid in Stockport, Ms Rayner said that Labour’s defeat last month had left the party facing its “biggest challenge in our history”. Also, she said that Labour needs to find a “new kind of coalition” to regain power, and needs to “win back” former supporters who had left the party.
She also said that Mr Corbyn’s leadership had been a major factor behind the poor performance of the party, she also blamed the election strategy. She even said: “Seats where we suffered catastrophic defeats were seen as secure, while we tried to fight ‘target’ seats we had effectively already lost. It cannot happen again. The quick fix of a new leader will not be enough. We must rethink and renew our purpose and how we convince the people to share it. Either we face up to these new times or we become irrelevant. The next five years will be the fight of our lives.”
Ms Rayner also said that she would back Ms Long Bailey if she plan to stand for the top job, as she wants the leadership of the party to be a “team effort”.
After the launch, Ms Long Bailey took to her social media and tweeted that she would be lending her “full support” to her “good friend” Ms Rayner in her pitch for the deputy’s post.
Ms Rayner even unveiled a list of other Labour MPs who are backing her candidacy, which include shadow trade secretary Barry Gardiner and senior colleagues Louise Haigh and Jonathan Reynolds.