‘Turned it into bigger story!’ Starmer shoots himself in foot as strike row splits Labour

Sam Tarry ‘turned into a bigger story’ says commentator

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Jeremy Vine guest Andrew Peirce and Saleyha Ahsan were scathing in their reaction to the sacking of Mr Tarry by Sir Keir Starmer. The Labour leader has sparked a bitter factional row within his party as MPs split over whether to back Britain’s trade unions amid ongoing strikes. Jeremy Vine panellist agreed Sir Keir’s decision to remove Mr Tarry for turning up to a picket line has made the row into a “bigger story” than it otherwise needed to be. 

Mr Pierce told Jeremy Vine: “Industrial disputes could damage Labour if Labour is seen as being on the side of the strikers.

“So he is trying to pull his MPs back from these pickets and strikes.

“Very interesting though because Sam Tarry is stepping out, we can say that can’t we, his partner is Deputy Leader of the Labour Party Angela Rayner.

“She is very ambitious a lot of people think she would make a better Labour Leader than Keir Starmer, including me I might add.

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“She has got fiz and she has got the fire in her belly,” continued Mr Pierce.

“A number of Labour MPs were on picket lines yesterday, what is he going to do?

“Sack them all.”

“He has turned this into a bigger story than it needed to be,” added Ms Ahsan. 

Labour MP Sam Tarry defies Starmer's orders and joins picket line

Sir Keir sacked Mr Tarry after he defied the opposition leader’s ban on frontbenchers joining the pickets in support of striking rail workers.

The party said the shadow transport minister had been “removed from the frontbench”, saying it took seriously “any breach of collective responsibility”.

The move was met with fury by unions and the left-wing of the party.

Speaking to Sky News, John McDonnell described it as a “severe mistake”, accused Sir Keir of “misreading the mood of the public” and backed calls for a general strike.

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Labour has not officially supported the industrial action, but has criticised the Government and urged ministers to get involved in negotiations.

The MP for Hayes and Harlington told Sky News: “I don’t know who is advising Keir Starmer, but this is a completely unnecessary row that’s been invented just at a time when the Tories are tearing themselves apart, and we’ve got the maximum opportunity I think to gain an advantage in the polls that will build the support to take us into a government.”

He added: “This is an unnecessary dispute and whoever has advised Keir Starmer on this, I think he has made a severe mistake.”

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