Angela Rayner aims ‘pint-sized loser’ jibe at Rishi Sunak

Angela Rayner labelled Rishi Sunak a “pint-sized loser” after urging the Conservatives to stop “obsessing” about her living arrangements.

Labour’s deputy leader also accused Oliver Dowden of having “stabbed” the Tories’ “biggest election winner” Boris Johnson in the back in order to get his “mate into No 10”.

UK deputy prime minister Mr Dowden countered the jibes by suggesting “right honourable landlady” Ms Rayner should step down, adding the Labour MP might start claiming the House of Commons as her principal residence if the pair were required to deputise again at Prime Minister’s Questions.

Ms Rayner has faced scrutiny about whether she paid the right amount of tax on the 2015 sale of her Stockport council house because of confusion over whether it was her principal residence.

Labour’s deputy leader has said she will “do the right thing and step down” if she is found to have committed a crime in relation to her living situation a decade ago, but remains confident she has followed the law at all times.

With Mr Sunak in Berlin, Ms Rayner and deputy prime minister Mr Dowden took centre stage in the Commons on Wednesday.

But Ms Rayner pre-empted an attack line against her and opened the session by saying: “I know this party opposite is desperate to talk about my living arrangements, but the public want to know what this Government is going to do about theirs.”

She raised the case of a Brighton woman served with two no-fault eviction notices in 18 months, adding: “She joins nearly a million families at risk of homelessness due to his party’s failure to ban this cruel practice.

“Now instead of obsessing over my house, when will he get a grip and show the same obsession with ending no-fault evictions?”

Mr Dowden replied: “To begin with, it is a pleasure to have another exchange with (Ms Rayner) in this House, our fifth in 12 months, anymore of these and she’ll be claiming it as her principal residence.”


Mr Dowden later highlighted the UK government’s plans to boost defence spending, with Ms Rayner saying: “We all want to see 2.5 per cent, the difference is that we haven’t cut the army to its smallest size since Napoleon.

“Never mind some secretive deep state, it’s the state of the Tory party that’s the problem. They’re in a deep state of sewage.

“After 14 years they’ve failed renters, they’ve failed leaseholders and they’ve failed mortgage-holders.

“But I read with interest that (Mr Dowden) has been urging his neighbour in No 10 to call an election because he’s worried they might get wiped out.

“Has he finally realised that when he stabbed Boris Johnson in the back to get his mate into No 10 he was ditching their biggest election winner for a pint-sized loser?”

Mr Dowden replied: “I think the whole House will have heard, despite all the bluster from the lady opposite, not a single word on whether she would actually back our plans to invest in our armed forces, no plans in a dangerous world.

“And of course, as ever, the deputy leader is always looking to attack others’ failures but never the one to take responsibility for her own.

“She once said you shouldn’t be waiting for the police to bang on your door, if you did it then you shouldn’t be doing your job.

“The right honourable landlady should forget her tax advice and follow her own advice.”


Earlier, Ms Rayner pressed the UK government over its plans to reform leasehold and the pair clashed over mayoral election candidates – including in the West Midlands.

Mr Dowden also said: “Her policy to repeal every single Conservative trade union law in the first 100 days would open the door to French-style wildcat strikes.”

Ms Rayner joked she was expecting better from Mr Dowden, adding: “He seems to be a bit worn out, maybe it’s the 3am calls from the bad men that have been keeping him up at night.”

She added: “Their ban on leasehold won’t apply to the majority of people. It’s like banning non-doms but exempting Tory prime ministers.”

Ms Rayner went on to accuse Conservative former prime minister Liz Truss of going on a “twisted victory lap” promoting her new book.


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