ANGELA Rayner created a little piece of history for Tameside by becoming the first MP from the borough to take part in a Prime Minister’s Questions.
And despite being called up at short notice after a member of Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer’s family showed coronavirus symptoms, she received enough messages from constituents to bring up the issues of Covid-19 testing.
And her comment, ‘next time a man with Covid-19 symptoms drives from London to Durham will probably be for the nearest Covid-19 test,’ in reference to the furore over Government advisor Dominic Cummings, attracted many positive comments from political commentators.
A spokesman for Ashton MP Angela told The Correspondent: “Angela was alerted to the fact that she may have to cover PMQs when a member of Sir Keir’s family developed symptoms of coronavirus on Monday, meaning he had to isolate until he could be tested.
“His negative result arrived just before the start of PMQs.”
In the six questions she was allowed for the occasion on Wednesday, September 16, Mrs Rayner asked Prime Minister Boris Johnson whether he knew how much a care worker earns – an answer to which was somewhat absent – before focusing mainly on testing.
In the House of Commons, she said: “The crisis over testing has exposed the total and utter incompetence of this Government.
“They’ve had six months to get this right. We were promised a world beating testing system and we don’t even have a system that works. The situation is a complete shambles.”
Her spokesman added: “She has received a high volume of calls and emails from worried constituents that cannot book a test or have been offered a test hundreds of miles from their home.”
As well as testing, Mrs Rayner also quizzed the Prime Minister on the rules surrounding women giving birth and urged Mr Johnson to work cross party to make sure women were not to go through this alone.
She used her final question to ask why the Prime Minister had prioritised relaxing the ’rule of six’ for grouse shooting when the country is facing a second wave in winter.
Mrs Rayner, who lives in Ashton, was able to resume her more regular role because of the negative result in the Starmer household.