Angela Eagle has become the fifth Labour MP to launch a bid for the party’s deputy leadership.
The Wallasey MP and former chair of the party’s National Policy Forum, said Labour had suffered “a heart-breaking election defeat.”
It was all the more painful because “the scale of it had not been anticipated.” Labour had, she said, “endured a total political and strategic failure.”
Eagle, a former pensions minister under Gordon Brown and shadow Leader of the House under Ed Miliband, launched her campaign in a video, featuring party members endorsing her candidacy.
She joins Tom Watson, Caroline Flint, Stella Creasy and Ben Bradshaw in her bid to succeed Harriet Harman. One candidate fewer (so far) than the last deputy leadership contest in 2007.
Promising to be a “campaigning deputy” and “brutally honest about what went wrong,” Ms. Eagle said Labour needed to hear the views both of ordinary party members, but also those who did not support the party.
“I will also ensure we have a no holds barred debate about the way forward for our Party both politically and organisationally. This must be followed by robust action to learn the hard lessons and ensure that we are fit to win the many battles which lie ahead” she said.