‘I couldn’t care less about the circus of who’s in and who’s out, who’s up, who’s down, who knew, who didn’t’
Allies of Labour’s deputy leader were furious that the shake-up began as she was making a key speech on a sleaze crackdown – and that she first read about it in a newspaper.
“The leader makes the decisions, the gaffer picks the team, that’s how it goes and that’s how it has always gone,” she told BBC Breakfast.
“Frankly, I couldn’t care less about the circus of who’s in and who’s out, who’s up, who’s down, who knew, who didn’t.”
“We’re moving north,” she told Sky News, referring to the focus on levelling up in left-behind areas, adding: “Left or right? You can keep that debate.
“We’re going out into the country and we’re going to start delivering for people in towns, villages and cities that have been completely and utterly abandoned by the political system.”
The Labour leader carried out a ruthless overhaul of his team on Tuesday, including demoting Ed Miliband by taking away his business role and leaving him with climate change.
The former leader had clashed with Sir Keir in September over the watering down of a Corbyn-era policy to nationalise energy companies.
Ms Nandy also said it was up to the government to save Christmas, amid new Covid restrictions which will force more people to isolate in the festive run-up.
The health minister, Gillian Keegan, has admitted that more people will have to isolate as cases of the omicron variant rise, which could put their Christmas plans at risk, though she said that “the chance of that right now is pretty low”.
“I think this is largely in the government’s gift. The vast majority of people are doing what is asked of them – wearing masks, getting the booster jab, social distancing,” Ms Nandy said.
“My little boy’s school has got its doors and windows open, trying to increase ventilation, even in the cold.
“People are trying their best, but there are some big holes in the government’s plans, particularly around travel.”
On the subject of the new testing rules for international arrivals, Ms Nandy added: “Taking a day-2 PCR test is very shambolic for a lot of people. The government isn’t even checking up.”