Cooper supporter faces criticism over ‘working mum’ backing

Yvette Cooper
Yvette Cooper
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The Labour leadership contest has descended into acrimony after a Yvette Cooper supporter Helen Goodman suggested she should win because she has children.

Helen Goodman was accused of taking a swipe at Liz Kendall by writing an article saying she backed Ms Cooper because “as a working mum she understands the pressures on modern family life”.

“Much more more important to me than being an MP and shadow minister is that I am a mum. I have two children and although they are both grown up (supposedly) once a mum always a mum,” Ms Goodman wrote on the Huffington Post.

Ms Cooper, MP for Pontefract, Normanton and Castleford, then sent a link to the article to followers on Twitter, prompting Miss Kendall’s campaign manager Toby Perkins to respond: “Is this what it’s come to?”

Asked about the issue on BBC Two’s The Daily Politics, he added: “I think the idea that you say because one of the candidates is a mother they’re the one you should back suggests a paucity of intellectual argument which the Labour Party really should have moved beyond. So I was disappointed with the specific piece.”

John Woodcock, another prominent MP supporting Miss Kendall, tweeted: “Looking forward to the day someone tells a man they are voting for him because he has a kid and the other guy does not. Will be equally sad then too.”