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Labour’s Owen Smith says he’s ‘normal’ candidate because he has a wife and three kids

Nick Duffy July 18, 2016

Labour’s Owen Smith has branded himself the “normal” candidate for the party leadership because he has a “wife and three kids”.

Mr Smith, the MP for Pontypridd and Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, is one of two challengers to Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour leadership.

The other challenger is lesbian MP Angela Eagle – who has spoken repeatedly about her pride as standing as a “strong gay woman”. She and spouse Maria Exall have no children.

In an interview with Sky News, Mr Smith suggested that he was the “normal” candidate for the role.
Sky News on Twitter

Responding to a question about whether he sees himself as ‘normal’, he replied: “I’m glad you think I’m normal. I am normal. I grew up in a normal household. I’ve got a wife and three children. My wife is a primary school teacher.

“I’ve been in Parliament for six years, before that I had two or three other jobs, in business, in politics and advising the peace process in Northern Ireland.”

In a statement to the Evening Standard, an adviser for Mr Smith insisted he was not intending to compare himself to Ms Eagle or Mr Corbyn with the clumsy remark.

They insisted: “He was just trying to say that he is an ordinary person, proud to live and represent his own community in Parliament.”

However, his comments did not go down well on Twitter.

Some compared him to failed Tory leadership hopeful Andrea Leadsom, whose downfall came about when she appeared to suggest she had an edge over Theresa May because she is a mother.

Ms Leadsom withdrew from the race after the bruising row.

More: 2016 Leadership Contests, Angela Eagle, Gay, Labour, lesbian, LGBT, mp, owen smith, Politics

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