Rayner unveils plans to take over from Starmer with Boris dig ‘Might be a vacancy…’

PMQs: Angela Rayner shares leadership ‘aspirations’

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Angela Rayner stood in for Sir Keir after the Labour leader tested positive for Covid for the second time leaving her to take on Boris Johnson during PMQs. But Ms Rayner, who has been long teased for her rumoured leadership bid, was once again slammed for her apparent division with Sir Keir as the prime minister delivered a dig about her Labour ambitions. Ms Rayner took on Mr Johnson head-on and said that she perhaps should get “aspirations” to become prime minister.

The deputy leader asked Mr Johnson how he would “get a grip” of inflation and tax increases during her appearance in the House of Commons.

Mr Johnson responded and said: “It’s great to be here with the right honourable shadow secretary of state for the future of work.

“We know the future job that she has in mind… I wish her well…”

The House of Commons roared at the comment as the Conservative leader said he was focused on getting more jobs for the British people.

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As Ms Rayner rose from her seat, she told the House: “Mr Speaker, I’ve heard through the grapevine there may be a vacancy for prime minister soon.

“So maybe I should have aspirations.”

Disagreements between Sir Keir and Ms Rayner have become more apparent over the past few months after the deputy leader “didn’t know the details” of a sudden Labour reshuffle.

Ms Rayner was giving a speech at the Institute for Government when the cabinet reshuffle was made and told Times Radio: “I reckon that Keir would tell me first, yeah.”

PMQs: Boris Johnson clashes with Angela Rayner

In May, Ms Rayner was also sacked as party chair and national campaign coordinator which was believed to be a result of Labour’s Batley and Spen by-election defeat.

Following the sacking and subsequent new roles given to Ms Rayner, Mr Johnson commented on the events in the House of Commons.

He said: “Note that in any pride of lions, Mr Speaker, it is the male who tends to occupy the position of titular of nominal authority.

“While the most dangerous beast, the prize hunter of the pack, was in fact the lioness.

“A point that I’m sure [Keir Starmer] bears in mind as he contemplates the member, his friend, the Right Honourable Member for Ashton-Under-Lyne.

“The deputy leader, the Shadow first Secretary of State, the Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Shadow Secretary of State for the future of work.

“Though the more titles he feeds her, Mr Speaker, the hungrier I fear she is likely to become.”

Ms Rayner also supported Rebecca Long-Bailey’s leadership campaign.

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