'Is he doing a good job?' Sacked shadow minister pressed on Keir Starmer's performance

27 July 2022, 18:47 | Updated: 27 July 2022, 18:57

By Sam Sholli

Sacked shadow minister Sam Tarry has said Keir Starmer is doing "the best job he can", in response to being asked if he's doing a good job.

Mr Tarry was sacked as Labour shadow minister after appearing on a picket line during Wednesday's rail strike.

Labour said the MP had been "removed from the frontbench" but the party has denied that it was due to his appearance on a picket line.

A Labour Party spokesperson said: "The Labour Party will always stand up for working people fighting for better pay, terms and conditions at work.

"This isn't about appearing on a picket line. Members of the frontbench sign up to collective responsibility. That includes media appearances being approved and speaking to agreed frontbench positions.

"As a government in waiting, any breach of collective responsibility is taken extremely seriously and for these reasons Sam Tarry has been removed from the frontbench."

Mr Tarry told LBC's Ben Kentish: "I'm a Labour Party loyalist. I've stood in elected positions under four Labour Party leaders, including Keir Starmer."

He then said he'll be doing everything he can from this day onwards to ensure that Sir Keir Starmer is the Prime Minister.

Ben then pressed Mr Tarry for his views on the Labour leader's performance.

He asked; "Do you think he's doing a good job?"

Mr Tarry responded: "I think he's doing the best job that he can."

In response, Ben asked: "Is he doing a good job?"

Mr Tarry replied: "I think he's doing the best job that he can."

Asked by Ben if he should take that as a no, Mr Tarry said: "No, because it's not about no. But I think that any leader makes mistakes at different points. Of course that they do.

"But I think that this could have been handled in a far better way.

"I think we're now going to see across the Labour Party an awful lot of anger about what's gone on today.

"It was avoidable. It was unnecessary. You know, I'm someone that can pick up the phone to different trade union leaders.

"You know, I wanted to help Keir get to a position where this sort of thing was not going to be happening.

"There are ways of showing your support for the trade union movement without necessarily having to even join a picket line. Course it's great.

"But by creating a red line where it says you choose the movement from which you come or you choose me - that is an impossible position to be left in."