Dominic Raab has criticised Angela Rayner for attending the Glyndebourne opera competition – calling it proof that “champagne socialism is back in the Labour party”.
Standing in for Boris Johnson, the deputy prime minister hit out at Labour’s deputy chief after photos emerged of her within the Sussex countryside, having fun with Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, through the rail strikes final week.
“Where was she when the comrades were on the picket line last Thursday?” Mr Raab requested, including: “She was at the Glyndebourne music festival, sipping champagne.”
Mr Raab smiled and winked at his reverse quantity throughout the Commons despatch field because the pair clashed over tax rises and the federal government’s crackdown on noisy protests.
Ms Rayner hit again, saying Tory ministers spent a night final week “at the banqueting table getting hundreds of thousands squeezed out of their donors”.
She additionally criticised Mr Raab for enjoyable “on a sunlounger” whereas individuals fled Afghanistan final summer time – a mistake that led to his sacking as international secretary.
Later, a No 10 spokesman denied Mr Raab’s criticism was an assault on a working-class girl, akin to Ms Rayner, having fun with champagne and opera.
“The prime minister is clear that everybody should be able to enjoy arts and culture and other such things across the UK,” he stated.
Ms Rayner stated: “My advice to the deputy prime minister is to cut out the snobbery and brush up on his opera.
“The Marriage of Figaro is the story of a working-class woman who gets the better of a privileged but dim-witted villain.”
With the prime minister away on the Nato summit, Ms Rayner taunted his deputy about final week’s disastrous byelection thumpings which have renewed Tory requires a change on the prime.
“The government lost two by-elections in one day, the first in three decades. It’s no wonder that the prime minister has fled the country and left the honourable member to carry the can,” she alleged.
“The people of Wakefield and Tiverton held their own vote of no confidence. The prime minister isn’t just losing the room, he is losing their country.
“But instead of showing some humility, he intends to limp on until the 2030s. So, does he think the cabinet will prop him up for this long?”
Mr Raab raised Ms Rayner’s personal management ambitions, saying: “I gently point out to her that we want this prime minister going a lot longer than she wants the leader of Labour Party…”, earlier than being lower off.
He argued the Conservatives nonetheless have “a working majority of 75” and that “we are focusing on delivering for the British people”.
The deputy prime minister added: “We will protect the public from these damaging rail strikes, when we have got the scene of Labour frontbenchers joining the picket lines.”
Mr Raab additionally taunted Labour over Keir Starmer confirming he has ripped up Labour’s defeated 2019 election manifesto, arguing that meant he has “no plan” after two years as chief.
“Tony Blair – he has actually got some experience of winning elections – says there is a gaping hole in Labour’s policy offer and all the while she is revelling in it.”