Angela Rayner says Labour is 'united' about getting into power
Angela Rayner urges Labour to be ‘unified’ about getting into power as she glosses over infighting on Israel and lack of ‘bold’ policies in conference speech
Angela Rayner insisted Labour is ‘unified’ about getting into power today as she glossed over infighting with the Left.
The deputy leader stressed that the party has ‘one aim’ as she rallied activists at conference in Liverpool.
Ms Rayner took a series of potshots at Tories, including swiping at Suella Braverman’s tough law and order stance and joking that Jacob Rees-Mogg uses carrier pigeons instead of WhatsApp.
Addressing a packed hall, she said she hoped it would be her last speech to conference before the general election.
‘Because just like you, I am sick of being in Opposition,’ she said.
Angela Rayner stressed that the party has ‘one aim’ as she rallied activists at conference in Liverpool
‘When you elected me three and a half years ago, it was the honour of my life.
‘But you didn’t elect me to be Deputy Leader of the Opposition, you elected me to be Deputy Prime Minister of a Labour Government.
‘One that will transform people’s lives, like the last Labour government changed my own.’
She added: ‘Our movement has never been so unified, so focused. Around one aim. To give Britain its Future Back.
Keir Starmer has been hoping for a ‘safety first’ conference – potentially the last before an election – with Labour enjoying consistent double-digit poll leads.
But the Hamas atrocities in Israel have threatened to reopen a deep schism with the Left. And there have been complaints from all wings that Sir Keir has failed to announce any bold policy or set out what he stands for.
Ms Rayner tried to reassure activists that the leadership is not backing off radical left-wing changes.
‘Conference, I’ve heard some rumours that we’ll be watering down our New Deal For Working People,’ she said.
‘Be in no doubt, not with Keir and I at the helm.
‘We’ll ban zero-hour contracts, and fire-and-rehire, and give workers basic rights from day one.
‘We’ll go further and faster in closing the gender pay gap, make work more family-friendly, and tackle sexual harassment.
‘And we won’t stop there. We’ll ensure that unions can stand up for their members. We will boost collective bargaining, to improve workers’ pay, terms and conditions.’
Ms Rayner also promised Labour would deliver new council homes, strengthen renters rights, and abolish leasehold land tenure.
Despite being buoyed by victory in the Rutherglen & Hamilton West by-election, Sir Keir warned against complacency.
‘It is not going to be giddy, it is not going to be ‘job done’,’ Sir Keir told the Observer.
‘So you won’t get razzmatazz. You won’t see mistakes that have been made in the past by opposition parties.’
In an interview with the Sunday Mirror, he set out proposals to pay doctors and nurses overtime to carry out more procedures like scans and operations at the weekend.
Keir Starmer has been hoping for a ‘safety first’ conference – potentially the last before an election – with Labour enjoying consistent double-digit poll leads
The plan, which the party estimates would create 2.2 million NHS appointments a year, would be backed by £1.5billion which Labour says would come from scrapping the non-dom tax status.
Abolishing the regime is how the party plans to fund the largest ever workforce expansion in the NHS.
‘I think everybody knows someone who’s on the NHS waiting list. And I’m certainly not immune from that. This is a period of high anxiety for individuals – huge personal discomfort in many cases,’ he said.
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