Diane Abbott [Image: Getty Images].

Skwawkbox follows up on coverage of David Davis’s unwanted attention towards Diane Abbott (This Site’s article is here) with a timely query about the amount of outrage shown by prominent female Labour MPs, including former deputy leader Harriet Harman: None.

Ms Harman has received considerable coverage in the mainstream media recently for her claim that she was sexually assaulted by three people – a claim that – for many women – will undoubtedly seem conservative but that some commentators seem to find incredible.

Why is it, then, that she has failed to speak out about this incident? Are some assaults more offensive than others?

There have been many messages of support from social media users, and of condemnation of the Tories involved, along with a very good New Statesman article by Stephen Bush.

What there has not been, as far as this author can tell, is any support or outrage in some quarters of the Labour Party from which it should most be expected.

Former interim Labour leader Harriet Harman has spent a lot of time on our TV screens over the past week, promoting her new book A Woman’s Work – including telling us what a great Labour leader she’d have made.

The first ever minister for women and a former Secretary of State for women and equality, Ms Harman is considered a prominent campaigner on behalf of women’s rights and equality, so of course she would be quick to jump into the fray on Ms Abbott’s behalf, right?

Wrong. Ms Harman’s Twitter feed is active, for that of a busy politician. She found plenty of time for tweets to promote her new book. She found time to tweet in praise of Jess Phillips, a Labour MP and Chair of the Women’s Parliamentary Labour Party, who infamously bragged about telling Ms Abbott to ‘f*ck off’ and laughed as Abbott was mocked by a TV impressionist.

But a message of support and solidarity with a mistreated female colleague, or to condemn the racism of Councillor Pearmain or the misogyny of David Davis?


Let alone a mention in one of her many, self-promoting media appearances. Odd, for someone who thinks she’d have made a great leader.

Ms Harman is not alone in this curious silence. Read the Twitter feeds of any of the women MPs who were lightning quick to sound off in support of Angela Eagle when she supposedly suffered abuse (which was later shown to have been confected) and you’ll struggle to find a mention of what happened to Diane Abbott, let alone any messages of support.

Source: #DianeAbbott called ‘ape’ by Tory, assaulted by Tory. Where’s outrage from Harman and co? | The SKWAWKBOX

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