Rishi Sunak yesterday accused Sir Keir Starmer of putting women and girls at risk with another U-turn on trans people’s self-identification.
It came after the Labor leader used an event near Glasgow to say he would not have blocked the SNP’s proposed gender recognition reforms.
Introduced under former First Minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon, they would have allowed people as young as 16 to declare their gender without needing a medical diagnosis.
But the Prime Minister used his powers to block the proposals becoming law in January over concerns about the impact on women-only safe spaces.
Prior to this, Sir Keir had supported the introduction of self-id, but then U-turned and said he supported intervention by Downing Street.
Rishi Sunak yesterday accused Sir Keir Starmer (pictured) of putting women and girls at risk with another U-turn on trans people’s self-identification.
In Rutherglen with his Scottish counterpart Anas Sarwar (pictured) ahead of a key by-election, Sir Keir attacked the government for blocking SNP reforms.
This has put him at odds with the Scottish Labor party, which has said it continues to support the “demedicalisation” of gender recognition north of the border.
But during an event in Rutherglen with his Scottish counterpart Anas Sarwar ahead of a key by-election, Sir Keir attacked the government for blocking SNP reforms.
He accused UK ministers of abusing their powers under devolution, saying they were “not intended to empower the Westminster government to forcefully block things the Scottish parliament wanted to do”. “That was not the intention…not to block provisions.”
It will be seen as an attempt to appease her Scottish colleagues ahead of by-elections in Rutherglen and Hamilton West, sparked earlier this month after SNP MP Margaret Ferrier was suspended and lost her seat for breaching lockdown rules. Covid.
But speaking to the Daily Mail last night, the Prime Minister said: ‘Sir Keir Starmer has just done a U-turn on his own U-turn. First he was in favor of self-identification, then he tried to convince us that he was against it. He is now in favor of it, but only if you are in Scotland. Women and girls need their rights to be protected, no matter where they live in the UK.
“It is clear that Sir Keir Starmer lacks the strength to stay in any position for long – he simply changes his mind to suit what he thinks is politically convenient for him.”
Scottish Labor leader Anas Sarwar and Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer speak on stage at Rutherglen Town Hall on Tuesday.
Michael Shanks, Labor candidate for the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election, has admitted disagreeing with Sir Keir over the two-child benefit limit and gender self-identification.
Shanks, the favorite to win, has pledged to vote against the cap if elected.
He has also said he supports the ‘demedicalisation’ of the legal gender change process and the ‘general principles’ of the SNP’s Gender Recognition Reform Bill.
A date for the by-election has not yet been set.