WATCH: Jeremy Corbyn accuses reporter of 'harassment' over general election question
Jeremy Corbyn has accused a reporter of “harassment” after she asked him if he would welcome a snap general election.
ITV political correspondent Libby Wiener was told she was “rude” and had her professionalism questioned by an aide to the Labour leader.
After a speech on Saturday at the Class thinktank in which he called for “transparency and accountability” to Parliament over Brexit, Ms Wiener tried to ask Mr Corbyn a question.
“Would you be happy if Theresa May called a general election?” she asked as he was leaving the venue.
An aide to the leader said he was not doing interviews and tried to block the camera, as Mr Corbyn can be heard saying: “Can we go outside? We’re being harassed here.”
The aide then calls Ms Weiner rude, adding: “I thought you were a professional – look at you.”
Ms Weiner shot back: “I am a professional, and the country wants to know what the leader of the opposition thinks about the possibility of a general election.”
Corbyn-critic and Simply Red singer Mick Hucknall tore into the veteran leftwinger on Twitter.
But Mr Corbyn has since insisted Labour is “ready” for a snap general election and would “welcome the challenge”.
In recent months polls have shown Labour to be far behind the Tories in public support, with most putting the party on a double-digit disadvantage.
But the Labour leader insisted he would force Theresa May into a general election in the spring if she refuses his key demands on Brexit.
“If the Government calls an election we’re ready for it,” Mr Corbyn told the Sunday Mirror.
“We have the members, the organisation and the enthusiasm. We welcome the challenge.
“It would give us the chance to put before the British people an alternative economic strategy for this country.”
Mr Corbyn said his Labour manifesto would include bumping the minimum wage up to £10, which would save money on housing benefit and working tax credits.