Sun apologises after branding pregnant MP Lucy Powell ‘lazy’

List of the 'Top 10 laziest MPs' also allegedly included politicians with 'very serious illnesses'

The Sun newspaper has been forced to apologise after it included a pregnant MP in its list of the “laziest” politicians.

Lucy Powell, the Labour MP for Manchester Central, said she realised she was included in the newspaper’s “Top 10 laziest MPs” list when she began receiving texts and Twitter messages yesterday.

The list was apparently based on records of how often politicians “turned up to vote in the Commons”, but reportedly included those with “very serious illnesses” alongside Ms Powell, who spent some of the period in question on maternity leave.

The online version of the article containing the list has since been taken down, and the newspaper’s Politics Twitter profile (@Sun_Politics) wrote: “Our apologies to @LucyMPowell for including her on list of the 10 laziest MPs while on maternity leave.”

The Sun added that the article was now “under review” – and Ms Powell said she expects a full printed apology early next week.

Speaking to the BBC, she said she was “appalled” to be described as lazy, adding that “nothing could be further from the truth”.

“I realised they had based their analysis on my voting record,” Ms Powell said.

“Of course, I've had a few months off from Parliament this year because I've been on maternity leave and I've had a baby.

“While I was having a baby I was still doing all of my constituency case work and lots of other aspects of my job, I just wasn't going down to London to actually vote because I had been paired (a system where two MPs from opposing parties agree to miss a vote).”

Ms Powell said the fact that the article had not taken her maternity leave into account “shows what a poor piece of research it really was”.

And she wrote on Twitter: “Other MP's on that list have v serious illnesses @Sun_Politics”

Other Twitter users rallied round to defend Ms Powell. Fellow Labour MP Graham Jones described the list as “shocking”, while the House of Lords peer and 11-times Paralympic gold medallist Tanni Grey-Thompson said: “There is so much more to politics than just voting…”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Personal Tax Senior

£28000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer and Markets Development Executive

£22000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company's mission is to ma...

Recruitment Genius: Guest Services Assistant

£13832 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This 5 star leisure destination on the w...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Account Manager

£20000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Account Manager is requ...

Day In a Page

Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests
Mexico: A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life

The dark side of Mexico

A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life
Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde. Don't tell other victims it was theirs

Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde

Please don't tell other victims it was theirs
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border