Conservative MPs claim Angela Rayner joined in with jokes about 'flashing her legs'

The Mail on Sunday's 'basic instinct' story caused outrage on both sides of the Commons

Published

A pair of Conservative MPs claim Angela Rayner made jokes about flashing her legs before the Mail on Sunday story was published.

The paper quoted a senior Tory source in saying Ms Rayner was deliberately crossing and uncrossing her legs while wearing a skirt in the Commons to distract Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Both sides of the Commons reacted with fury to the story being published, with calls for the anonymous source quoted to be sacked.

But now, two Conservative MPs have told the Telegraph Ms Rayner joined in with jokes about flashing her legs.

Deputy Labour Leader Angela Rayner
Deputy Labour Leader Angela Rayner

One told the paper Ms Rayner laughed when asked if she could put Boris off, while a second said she joked about the topic.

This comes after a Tory MP who allegedly watched pornography on his mobile phone in the House of Commons chamber should be expelled from the party if the claims are correct, a Home Office minister has said.

Rachel Maclean, who is the minister responsible for safeguarding women, said the alleged behaviour was “shocking and unacceptable”, adding that there should be no place for it in the party or in Parliament.

Government chief whip Chris Heaton-Harris has launched an investigation after the allegations about the unnamed MP surfaced during a meeting of Tory MPs at Westminster on Tuesday.

Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner speaking during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons
Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner speaking during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons

Ms Maclean, who was at the gathering, said that everyone present had been “shocked and horrified” at what they were hearing.

Tuesday’s meeting was reportedly attended by between 40 and 50 Tory MPs, including Mr Heaton-Harris, Tory party chairman Oliver Dowden and Commons Leader Mark Spencer.

The meeting came amid reports 56 MPs, including three Cabinet ministers, are facing allegations of sexual misconduct referred to the Independent Complaints and Grievances Scheme.

Mr Johnson told the Commons “sexual harassment is intolerable” and “of course it is grounds for dismissal” when asked about the 56 MPs.

His aides insisted the Tory party does not have a problem with misogyny and sexism.

The Prime Minister’s press secretary said: “You will have heard the PM address this explicitly in Parliament today and over the last few days, saying there is absolutely no place for such behaviour and this cannot be tolerated in any workplace.”

A Conservative whips’ office spokeswoman said: “The chief whip is looking into this matter.

“This behaviour is wholly unacceptable and action will be taken.”