Theresa May makes bizarre reference to Jeremy Corbyn 'alone and naked'

PM's quip criticised as 'sexist' and 'weird'

Lucy Pasha-Robinson
Tuesday 30 May 2017 17:23 BST
Theresa May makes bizarre reference to 'alone and naked' Jeremy Corbyn

Theresa May has been accused of “demeaning” her political office after claiming Jeremy Corbyn would find himself “alone and naked” in Brexit talks.

Speaking at a campaign event in Wolverhampton, the Prime Minister claimed the Labour leader would be unprepared for the challenge of negotiating a Brexit deal with Europe if elected to office on 8 June.

“With his position on Brexit, he will find himself alone and naked in the negotiating chamber of the European Union,” she said.

She added: “I know that's an image that doesn't bear thinking about but actually this is very serious.”

Her comments, just nine days ahead of the general election, were lambasted as “demeaning”, “weird” and “awkward”, with political commentators accusing her of being overly personal.

One reporter asked if her “increasingly personal attacks” on Mr Corbyn were symbolic of an “increasing desperation” as Labour continues to make strides in the polls.

“Aren’t you demeaning the great office of prime minister?” they asked.

ITV political editor Robert Peston accused Ms May of sexism.

Political editor at The Guardian, Heather Stewart, said the choice of metaphor was “icky” and the lack of context “just felt awkward.”

The metaphor was originally used by Labour politician Aneurin Bevan in 1957 as a warning to unilateralists in his own party that stripping Britain of nuclear weapons would send a future foreign secretary “naked into the conference chamber”.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in