Tyne & Wear

Jarrow Labour hopeful Kate Osborne sorry over 'May at gunpoint' post

Kate Osborne Image copyright Kate Osborne
Image caption Kate Osborne said she "unreservedly apologised" for sharing the image

A Labour Party candidate has apologised for sharing an image of former Conservative prime minister Theresa May with a gun pointed at her head.

Kate Osborne posted a parody image of a wincing Mrs May alongside a gun-holding Samuel L Jackson in the film Pulp Fiction, on social media in 2017.

She has been chosen for the safe seat of Jarrow after the suspension of Stephen Hepburn.

Ms Osborne admitted that posting the image had "caused offence".

A number of female Labour candidates have written to the party's National Executive Committee (NEC) urging it to rethink Ms Osborne's selection

Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner said Ms Osborne's actions were "totally unacceptable".

She said: "As somebody who's faced a level of abuse and death threats as a politician, I think a lot of people out there really don't see the vitriol and the nastiness that's online or that's pointed towards politicians at the moment.

"So I think it's totally unacceptable to share images like that."

Image copyright PA Media
Image caption Angela Rayner said Labour's NEC would decide Ms Osborne's future

She said it would be up the NEC to decide Ms Obsborne's future.

The image, which the current North Tyneside councillor posted during the 2017 general election campaign, depicts Mrs May being threatened with a gun and ordered to stop saying the words "strong and stable".

In a statement Ms Osborne said: "I shared an image on social media of a film parody poster making light of Theresa May's forced and robotic statements about her 'strong and stable government' in the run-up to the 2017 general election.

"I unreservedly apologise for having shared this image, which I immediately deleted two years ago, as soon as I realised that it had caused offence.

"As a woman, I am extremely concerned about the abuse and threats that women in politics face and if elected I will work with colleagues to challenge misogyny, hate and division in politics and beyond."

Mr Hepburn was suspended by the Labour Party last month, as it launched an investigation into claims he sexually harassed a female party member in her 20s at a curry house 14 years ago. He has said he "completely refutes" the allegation.

The Labour Party has been approached for comment.

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