Manchester news 'He doesn't know how much a care worker earns' - worlds collide as Angela Rayner takes on Boris Johnson Manchester united news
MetiNews.Com - The Ashton MP and former domiciliary worker today made her debut at PMQs
Breaking News ! It is hard to envisage two more starkly contrasting journeys to the front benches. But, via very different routes, Angela Rayner and Boris Johnson's paths both led to this afternoon's PMQs. Ashton-under-Lyne’s MP, for those who don’t know her backstory, has spoken often of how she was written off as a teenager; a single mum and care worker who, despite saying she ‘felt ashamed of who she was’ when she was younger, ended up being elected deputy leader of the Labour Party by the time she was 40. In the blue corner...well Boris Johnson’s back story probably needs even less elaboration. Perhaps it’s no surprise, then, that the PM appeared to be treading carefully today against his temporary opposite number when she made her debut in Sir Keir Starmer’s absence. There are few MPs more qualified to raise the frailties of the social care system with the government than Angela Rayner, a former domiciliary worker and Unison official for the sector. And, on current performance, few less qualified than Boris Johnson to answer them. (Image: House of Commons/PA Wire) Noting that Sir Keir had fortunately been able to self-isolate in recent days while waiting for a test, she posed: “Other people aren’t in this position, Mr Speaker. Many of them are the very people who are getting us through this crisis, like the care workers that I used to work alongside before I was elected to this house. “The Prime Minister once earned £2,300 an hour. So can the Prime Minister tell us: what is the average hourly rate for a care worker in this country?” The Prime Minister’s response sounded anything but confident. “Well Mr Speaker, I er... congratulate errrr, the errr, my Honourable Lady on err, on err, her elevation,” he responded, before eventually noting that Sir Keir had in fact now had a negative test, so could have been in the Commons. But it wasn’t to be.
. “Oh he’s finished. Ok,” she muttered in a stage whisper when he concluded.
(Image: House of Commons/PA Wire)
“The whole country will have seen the Prime Minister doesn’t know how much a care worker earns.” Sweeping on to the testing chaos currently hitting her own constituency - which includes Tameside and Oldham, which both have among the highest Covid rates in the country - and everywhere else, she then circled back to social care. “Can the Prime Minister confirm, yes or no: do all care homes in this country have weekly tests?” The Prime Minister quickly opted to make himself a hostage to fortune. “Well that would be yes, to the best of my knowledge. Care homes in this country should get weekly tests for all staff members and tests every 28 days for those who are residents in the care homes.” Apparently not. “Yesterday the chief executive of Care England said the promised weekly testing for staff: that has not been delivered,” shot back Rayner.
Boris Johnson during PMQs this afternoon
“Time and time again he makes promises and then breaks those promises.” And then on to his elusive plan for social care, the existence of which he announced on the steps of Downing Street over a year ago; and to the government’s decision to exempt hunting parties from social gathering rules. Natural fodder, in both cases, for the opposition benches, neither of which elicited little in the way of confident responses. Both lines of attack were obvious and could have easily been predicted.
Sign up to the free MEN email newsletter
Get the latest updates from across Greater Manchester direct to your inbox with the free MEN newsletter You can sign up very simply by following the instructions here
PMQs tend to be measured in who won, or who scored the most points. And for what it’s worth, Angela Rayner landed some decent blows in her first outing. But the wider significance is not who ‘won’ in this afternoon’s theatre of the increasingly absurd. It was Boris Johnson's uncertainty in the face of this particular opponent, less than a year after the bombast and bluster of the 2019 election. It was the symbolism of the self-styled ‘Prime Minister of the people’ stumbling, on a level playing field, when faced with one of them.
Source = MetiNews.Com