Stephen Kinnock: 'Next Labour leader should be a woman'

Monday, December 16, 2019

The next leader of the Labour Party should be a woman, according to Stephen Kinnock.

The Labour MP for Aberavon said it had been an "albatross hanging round our necks" that there had never been a female Labour leader.

"[We have] fantastic women MPs who are brilliant, but we haven't had a woman leader. I think we need to put that issue to bed," he told talkRADIO's Julia Hartley-Brewer.

"I also happen to think that fantastic candidates like Lisa Nandy and Jess Phillips are actually the best people for the job."

The race to replace Jeremy Corbyn is set to commence on January 7, with a new leader expected to be in place by the end of March.

In a plea to Labour members, Mr Kinnock said: "Do you want to win elections? Do you want to put our principles into practice? Do you want a Labour Party that is a party of government?

"Please think carefully and answer those questions before you put your cross in the ballot paper for who should be the next leader."

A number of senior figures in the current leadership have already given their backing to shadow business secretary, Rebecca Long-Bailey, to take over from Mr Corbyn.

However, Tony Blair's former political operations director, John McTernan, told talkRADIO that Ms Long-Bailey was "a statement that Labour really doesn’t want to win" an election.

Shadow foreign secretary, Emily Thornberry, is also believed to be eyeing a leadership bid.

Mr Kinnock continued: "I genuinely hope that our membership will realise we must never feel the way we felt at 10pm on Thursday night when we saw that exit poll."

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