Analysis: Sir Keir Starmer shows human side as risky Piers Morgan interview pays off

Sir Keir Starmer’s interview with Piers Morgan was broadcast tonightnote-0 with the Labour leader really needing some good press.

The former head of the Crown Prosecution Service has struggled to cut through so far with the British public – his party polling disastrously, losing by-elections and embracing the modern Labour tradition of public infighting.

When Jeremy Corbyn left after overseeing Labour’s worst election result since 1935, the party hoped electing a clean cut lawyer without a host of anti-Semitic friends would help rebuild the party.

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Instead Sir Keir has hit a red wall, with a slight raid on Liberal Democrat voters failing to help him gain ground on a Prime Minister soaring in the polls despite his government facing constant questions over sleaze and the UK’s 128,000 death toll.

Sir Keir Starmer risked an interview with Piers Morgan as he sought to show more personality to voters

The problem for Sir Keir is politics isn’t really about being qualified, it’s more about slogans and being able to make jokes while stuck on a zip line.

The QC, so often dismissed as “forensic”, is pitching professionalism to an electorate who want personality.

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Hoping to address that, he is now trying to reintroduce himself to the public and show more of himself in a sit-down interview with Piers Morgan.

Listening to the tragic story of his mum’s long battle with illness, his dad’s heartbreak after and the horror of his dog dying in a fire, it’s clear the Labour leader’s experience of tragedy informs his beliefs.

So often dismissed as a North London lawyer by Conservatives, we learnt he had a scholarship to Leeds University because his family were so poor. This is not your normal politician.

There’s persecuting the killers of Stephen Lawrence, buying donkeys for his sick mum to look at when she could no longer move, getting smashed with Amal and George Clooney, dealing with someone impersonating him or simply suggesting he’d “knock” Boris Johnson over on a football pitch.

The Labour leader clearly has warmth and wit, and I doubt many will hear his story and come out thinking he's anything, but a decent man who wants to serve.

He will need to bring this newly displayed level of wit and warmth more regularly if he hopes to ever do it as Prime Minister.

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