Carol Vorderman has called on Rishi Sunak to resign as Prime Minister after he made his trans joke despite being told Brianna Ghey’s mum Esther was in Parliament
Carol Vorderman has called on Rishi Sunak to resign after his shameful trans joke in the Commons.
The PM made the remark despite being told murdered transgender teen Brianna Ghey’s mum Esther was in Parliament. Mr Sunak was cheered from the Tory benches as claimed Labour leader Keir Starmer “can’t even define a woman”.
He stubbornly refused to say sorry, as his comment has sparked outrage with angry MPs shouting “shame”. Mr Starmer told the Commons the PM was “parading as a man of integrity when he’s got absolutely no responsibility”.
Ms Vorderman told The Mirror: “Rishi Sunak should immediately resign for his sick joke mocking trans people when he knew that Brianna Ghey’s mother was in the Houses of Parliament. The fact that the Tory benches sat laughing like a pack of hyenas tells you everything you need to know about this party.”
She accused the Conservatives that “continue to leech our money to their donors through government contracts” of “sinking ever further in their low grade of humanity”.
The shocking exchange came just moments after the Labour leader welcomed Esther Ghey, who was due to appear from the public gallery at Prime Minister’s Questions. It is thought she took her seat shortly after Mr Sunak’s cruel jibe. Mr Starmer praised her “unwavering bravery” just days after two teenagers were jailed for the murder of 16-year-old Brianna last year.
“As a father, I can’t even imagine the pain that she is going through and I am glad that she is with us in the gallery here today,” he added. But as Mr Sunak launched into his attack lines at PMQs, he accused Mr Starmer of failing to stand by his commitments and U-turning on “defining a woman”.
Mr Starmer replied: “Of all the weeks to say that when Brianna’s mother is in this chamber – shame. Parading as a man of integrity when he’s got absolutely no responsibility.”
Other MPs also shouted “shame” while one could be heard saying: “Disgusting”. Labour MP Liz Twist later asked the PM whether he “could consider apologising” to Brianna’s mother for his “insensitive comment” – but Mr Sunak swerved the question.
Mr Sunak’s press secretary also refused to apologise after PMQs, saying: “I think it’s legitimate to point out changes in position by the Leader of the Opposition.” His official spokesman added: “I think the PM has always been clear that everyone should be treated with dignity and respect.”
Labour MP Jess Phillips said: “Rishi Sunak is an absolute disgrace. Deplorable man with no heart, no sense, no clue. The sooner we are rid the better.” Lib Dem deputy leader Daisy Cooper wrote: The PM has brought shame on his office and on the House. MPs are rightly shouting ‘apologise’.”
Labours Nadia Whittome described it as “absolutely sickening”, adding: “That’s all trans people are to him: an opportunity for cheap point-scoring. There are no words. What a disgrace.” Shadow Armed Forces Minister Luke Pollard wrote: “Just sickening from the Prime Minister. No apology from the PM for that vile jibe just more cultural wars and division. Britain is so much better than this.”
Charity Stonewall said called Mr Sunak’s remark “cheap, callous and crass”. It added: “The disrespect and dehumanisation of trans people that we see played out daily in the media and in our political discourse has real life consequences and it has to stop.”
Mr Sunak faces calls to apologise. Closing off PMQs he paid tribute to Ms Ghey, but stopped short of saying sorry. He said: “If I could just say also to Brianna Ghey’s mother who is here, as I said earlier this week, what happened was an unspeakable and shocking tragedy.
“As I said earlier this week, in the face of that, for her mother to demonstrate the compassion and empathy that she did last weekend, I thought demonstrated the very best of humanity in the face of seeing the very worst of humanity. She deserves all our admiration and praise for that.”
Brianna’s mum told Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg she wanted the mother of her daughter’s killer, Scarlett Jenkinson, to know she did not blame her for what happened, as she called for action on teenagers’ access to mobile phones and social media.
Addressing her daughter’s killer’s mum, Ms Ghey said: “If she ever wants to speak to me, I’m here.” She added she would like to understand “how their life was, and what they went through”. “I also want her to know that – I understand how difficult being a parent is, in this current day and age, with technology and phones and the internet, and how hard it is to actually monitor what your child is on,” Ms Ghey said.