Labour spitting feathers as Tories call Corbyn a chicken in 'silly' stunt

6 September 2019, 16:36 | Updated: 6 September 2019, 19:03

The Conservatives have been accused of "silly playground behaviour" by their own party after launching a campaign depicting the Labour leader as a chicken.

In a dig at Jeremy Corbyn's decision to block a general election, Boris Johnson branded the Labour leader a "gigantic chlorinated chicken" in the House of Commons on Wednesday.

On Friday afternoon, the Conservatives' Twitter account shared a doctored image of Mr Corbyn in a chicken suit, with the caption: "Hey (KFC), we've found an even bigger chicken than you."

The Tories also sent lobby journalists takeaway bags of chicken marked "JFC" on Friday.

A news release accompanying the food, called Fowl Play, added: "Move over Colonel. Jeremy Corbyn's the new biggest chicken in town."

It came under fire from all sides, with Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, who co-chaired the Conservatives between
2010-12, condemning the move.

James Cleverly endorsed the campaign, saying: "Thinking about what to have for lunch. Large bucket of boneless (certainly spineless) JFC (Jeremy's Frightened & Chicken) perhaps."

In response, Baroness Warsi said: "This James is silly playground behaviour. We are in the middle of a national crisis and this is our response. How can grown men reduce themselves to this level of silliness. What has become of this great party of ours."

Former Conservative Alistair Burt, who had the whip removed this week for defying the government over plans to block a no-deal Brexit, also joined the criticism.

"Please stop this stuff," he tweeted. "We are better than this."

Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott said the Tories are "distracting from their chaotic leadership and lack of mandate with bad policies and even worse jokes".

"The problems facing this country are serious and a competent government would be acting not distracting," the Labour MP added.

KFC appeared to distance itself from the advert by referencing talk radio station LBC, well known for its political discussion.

"This is KFC not LBC don't @ me," the company's UK account tweeted.