Diane Abbott faces backlash as Toby Young steps down

Diane Abbott faced a surprising backlash this morning

Diane Abbott faced a surprising backlash this morning

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott has faced a rather surprising backlash over Toby Young's resignation from the Office for Students.

Young quit his role on the board of the new universities regulator after less than a fortnight, saying his appointment had become a "distraction."

The selection of Young had been greeted with a huge amount of criticism, with left-wingers suggesting his Tory background and track record of sexist tweets made him unsuitable for the role.

Following Young's resignation this morning, Abbott reacted with the message: "Good. He should never have been appointed in the first place "

The sentiment was widely shared on Twitter, with many others, including Abbott's shadow cabinet colleague Dawn Butler, sending their own messages of relief.

But Abbott herself faced criticism, with opponents suggesting she is a hypocrite given her refusal to apologise for previous comments, such as those in support of the IRA.

Read the reaction below.