I went 'apeshit' on election night and was nearly arrested, says Emily Thornberry

Written by David Singleton on 21 June 2018 in Diary

The shadow defence secretary also extolled the virtues of Richard Madeley during a press gallery lunch.

Why was Emily Thornberry so relaxed when Jeremy Corbyn made a boob during his awkward election night high five with the shadow defence secretary?

"At that moment I was just very relieved to be there at all,” Thornberry told lobby journalists at lunch in Westminster. "Because I have to confess that I came close to spending the election behind bars."

The leading Labour politician went on to recall how she and her entourage had got carried away while listening to the exit poll in a parked cab.

"We went apeshit! We were screaming and shouting and hugging each other and punching the upholstery and banging on the windows. The poor driver was absolutely terrified.

"And if there had been a passing policeman, surely he would have looked at the situation: a parked car, late at night, on a cul-de-sac, steamed up windows, violently rocking backwards and forwards...

"Thank goodness for Theresa May’s police cuts."





In the serious part of her speech to the hacks, Thornberry went on to lament what she called the normalisation of dishonesty in politics. And to pay tribute to Richard Madeley.

“I’m talking about an increasing willingness of even our most senior politicians to say things that they know are not true," she said, taking aim first at Donald Trump and then at MPs on both sides of the Brexit debate.

“It’s high time for a less tolerant approach to politicians who trade in time wasting and dishonesty. I didn’t think that I’d be up here today extolling the virtues of Richard Madeley and his contribution to political discourse. But I think it was genuinely important when he cut off Gavin Williamson last month.”

Thornberry then backed the ‘three strikes, and you’re out’ rule for political interviews that was subsequently advocated by Madeley - and added her own twist.

"Personally, I would be more than happy to be held to that standard. And I’d also go one step further.

"If a politician is asked a question and gives an answer that they knows to be false and the interview knows to be false and the public knows to be false, then that should be the end of the interview. Full stop."







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