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Jeremy Corbyn supporters brand Andy Burnham ageist

Mr Burnham suggested MPs should retire after spending 25 years in Parliament

Hardeep Matharu
Tuesday 04 August 2015 11:14 BST
Andy Burnham has been accused of "ageism"
Andy Burnham has been accused of "ageism" (Getty Images)

Andy Burnham has been accused of "ageism" by supporters of his Labour leadership rival Jeremy Corbyn.

The Shadow Health Secretary has been criticised following comments he made in GQ magazine, suggesting MPs should leave Parliament after 25 years in office, according to the Daily Telegraph.

In the magazine interview, Mr Burnham had said: “I think modern politics is intense – it’s changed in my 14 years in Parliament.

“I always felt I would give it my all for 20, 25 years.

“If you’ve had a seat for 25 years, people should let some new thinking in,” the newspaper reports.

Mr Corbyn, 66, now favourite to win the Labour leadership election, has been MP for Islington North since 1983, meaning he has spent 32 years in Parliament.

While his younger rival, 45-year-old Mr Burnham, has racked up 14 years as MP for Leigh.

The newspaper said a source close to Mr Corbyn said his rival’s comments showed a “hint of ageism”.

But a spokesman for Mr Burnham said the comments were not intended to be taken to be about Mr Corbyn and were “very much about himself”.

In an interview published in the Sunday Mirror this weekend, Mr Burnham’s mother Eileen said socialist Mr Corbyn was pushing the party backwards and “damaging Labour”.

Her son agreed: “We can’t go too far left.”

The new Labour leader will be announced on 12 September.

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