Shadow justice secretary defends giving standing ovation for speech calling for a general strike

Richard Burgon

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

The shadow justice secretary, Richard Burgon, defended giving a standing ovation for a speech by Laura Smith, which called for a general strike to bring down the Conservative government if there isn't a general election.

Mr Burgon told talkRADIO's Ross Kempsell he was simply "applauding a fantastic speech" and did not support a general strike.

"I applauded a fantastic speech by Laura Smith who until a year ago was a single mother wondering what she could do to help secure a Labour government and help her community in Crewe.


'I don't think a single person gave her speech a standing ovation'

"I don't think a single person gave her speech a standing ovation.

"I certainly applauded her speech and applauded all the speeches. I think you'd benefit from listening to all of her speech, she makes some really good points. This is a person who's not a career politician. if more people listenined to non-career politicians like Laura Smith and their life story then politics would be better and more interesting."

When asked again by Kempsell if he supported a general strike, Mr Burgon said: "I'm not calling for a general strike. A general strike isn't supported by the TUC, so I think it's a bit of a daft question to be honest."

Laura Smith, the Labour MP for Crewe and Nantwich, made her speech at Momentum, an event which ran alongside the Labour party conference in Liverpool.