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The Guardian view on Rishi Sunak’s transgender jibe: sorry seems to be the hardest word | Editorial

The Guardian view on Rishi Sunak’s transgender jibe: sorry seems to be the hardest word | Editorial

The Guardian view on Rishi Sunak’s transgender jibe: sorry seems to be the hardest word | Editorial
Feb 11, 2024 51 secs

Using transgender people as a political punchline in the Commons last week while the mother of murdered teenager Brianna Ghey was in parliament was grossly offensive.

By failing to acknowledge his error – and make amends – Mr Sunak emphasises a lack of a connection with, curiosity about and compassion for others.

Wellingborough’s Tory MP was forced to leave parliament after a recall was triggered, having been found to have bullied a staff member as well as indecently exposed himself to them in a hotel room.

Paying a tax rate of just 23% on £2.2m of his “earnings and gains” last year surely lies behind why Mr Sunak can’t connect with hard-up voters.

Since Brianna’s death, local Tory politicians have refrained from using wider transgender issues, which can be of legitimate public interest, for “culture war” attacks.

He might think it helps him make the case against Labour without having to discuss actual policy, and avoid being held accountable for outrageous acts such as giving party cronies and donors peerages.

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