Angela Rayner should be praised to the skies for apologising for calling Tories ‘scum’

The full apology – from which the apologiser undertakes to learn and be better – is a priceless thing, writes John Rentoul

Friday 29 October 2021 14:56
<p>Angela Rayner speaking at Labour conference – before she called the Tories ‘scum’ </p>

Angela Rayner speaking at Labour conference – before she called the Tories ‘scum’

It is easy to be cynical about Angela Rayner’s belated apology for calling Conservatives “scum”, which is presumably why half of the social media response to it has been so graceless. But the other half has been warm and supportive, praising the deputy Labour leader for reconsidering her words, and sympathising with her grief.

Rayner is on bereavement leave from the House of Commons at the moment, after the death of someone she thought of as a mother to her, according to Keir Starmer. She said in her statement yesterday: “While I have been away from the cut and thrust of parliament I have reflected on our political debate and the threats and abuse that now seem to feature all too often.”

She also thought again about her comments at a fringe event at the Labour Party conference in Brighton last month, and said: “I would like to unreservedly apologise for the language I used, and I would not use it again.”

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