Glasto, terrorists, and bestiality jokes: Jeremy Corbyn's Shadow Cabinet gets madder by the day

Jeremy Corbyn
Tom Watson
Clive Lewis
Emily Thornberry
Diane Abbott
John McDonnell
Andy Burnham

When Corbyn came in as the Labour Leader in 2015, it was seen by some as a breath of fresh air after a crushing general election defeat. But less than a year after he took over, he's already seen a number of rising difficulties - most notably a vote of no confidence and a leadership challenge by Owen Smith. He's previously been accused of apologising for terrorist groups, most notably when referring to the Palestinian militant organisation Hamas as "friends." His former chairmanship of the Stop the War coalition has raised eyebrows, as has his staunch opposition to the Trident nuclear programme and his suggestion that Isis executioner Jihadi John should have been taken to trial rather than killed. He was also left with egg on his face recently when he published a photo of himself sitting on the floor of a Virgin train, claiming there were no empty seats. The claim was subsequently refuted by Virgin Trains

Monday, September 12, 2016

As a journalist, they're the gift that keeps on giving. But Labour Party voters might not see it the same way.

The current Shadow Cabinet is a far cry from the ministerial groupings put together by Tony Blair in the 1990s and 2000s, when everything was tightly controlled and on-message. Personalities were subsumed for the common good and any whiff of controversy was snuffed out. The message was clear: scandal and disgrace were a Tory thing.

Now, though, Jeremy Corbyn's ministerial circle is a band of mavericks, whose members seem unable to do a single interview without putting their foot in their mouth or throwing the proverbial custard pie in their own face.

Emily Thornberry's car-crash interview on Sky News is just the latest example, and by no means the most egregious. Ordinarily, Thornberry's refusal - or inability - to name the French foreign minister, and her subsequent attempts to pass her interrogation off as a sexist ambush, would warrant widespread ridicule. But by the standards of some of her colleagues, it wasn't even that remarkable.

Jeremy Corbyn might be minded to haul her over the coals, but then the furore over his Virgin trainwreck is only just dying down. And her ministerial colleagues can't exactly claim the high ground, given their collective rap sheet includes everything from joking about bestiality to brandishing Chairman Mao's little red book in Parliament.

Corbyn's dream team may be the stuff of nightmares to Labour members of a more moderate (and low-key) persuasion, but, in the media, we certainly aren't complaining about the value they offer.

Click through the slideshow to see the full rogue's gallery - and the gaffes they've committed in recent months