Harriet Harman: Labour felt like ‘Dignitas waiting room’ before election
The Labour party felt like “a Dignitas waiting room” before the general election, Harriet Harman has said.
The former acting leader of the party said the party had been “looking over a cliff edge” when a snap election was called, with MPs fearing they would lose their jobs.
“The parliamentary Labour party was like a crumpled heap,” she said at an event in London last night. “Meetings had all the atmosphere of a Dignitas waiting room – we were saying goodbye to each other. We were having anxiety problems, we were looking over the cliff edge.”
A former critic of Jeremy Corbyn, Ms Harman said that the Labour leader had drastically improved his reputation during the campaign, partly by smartening his appearance. “Suddenly he appeared at the debate and he was wearing a dark suit and red tie, not a brown corduroy jacket.”
The Labour MP said she had given Mr Corbyn a “full-throated cheer” in the first meeting MPs after the election. “It seems as if Jeremy Corbyn is the man of the moment for getting Labour into power – and I still can’t get my head around it.”
On her previous opposition to Mr Corbyn, which saw her label his response to supporters harassing critics as “not good enough”, she said: ““I’m not going to say anything even halfway bad about Jeremy Corbyn.”