MP JON: MY JEZ ATTACK WAS BANTS Labour bigwig dismisses leak
A SHADOW Cabinet minister has been caught on tape saying voters “can’t stand” Jeremy Corbyn.
Jonathan Ashworth said the situation facing Labour was “abysmal”.
But he dismissed his remarks, in which he also claimed voters thought the party had “blocked Brexit”, as “banter”.
The Shadow Health Secretary, seen as a key ally of the Labour leader, also claimed civil servants would “pretty quickly move to safeguard security” if Mr Corbyn entered No10.
Mr Ashworth admitted the recording leaked to the Guido Fawkes website made him “look like a right plonker”.
He said the remarks were just “joking around” with Tory pal Greig Baker. He said: “We’re having banter with each other. I don’t mean it because I’m joking around with my mate because he’s a Tory.”
Mr Ashworth apologised to Labour members, and suggested he was trying to “psych” his friend out “like football managers do”. Boris Johnson last night said it was proof Labour was losing votes over its Brexit stance.
It came as criticism over the PM’s response to a four-year-old boy left sleeping on a hospital floor continued to dominate the Tory campaign. A photograph showed Jack Williment-Barr lying on a pile of coats at Leeds General Infirmary. Questioned by ITV News, Mr Johnson initially refused to look at the photo on a reporter’s phone before taking the handset and putting it in his pocket. Health Secretary Matt Hancock’s visit to the hospital prompted further woes after claims an aide was punched by a Labour activist proved false.
ALLY: Corbyn with Ashworth