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Angela Eagle launches bid to become Labour party’s first openly gay leader

By Josh Lee

Openly gay MP for Wallasey Angela Eagle has officially launched her campaign for Labour leader.

The former Cabinet minister’s bid follows a vote of no confidence against current leader Jeremy Corbyn in the wake of Brexit.

Speaking at the campaign’s launch, Ms Eagle said: “I’m not a Blairite. I’m not a Brownite. I’m not a Corbynista. I am my own woman.”

Speaking to ITV last night, Eagle laid out her plans to “heal” the Labour party, which has been dogged by tensions between MPs and members since current leader Jeremy Corbyn’s landslide leadership victory in September 2015.

Should the 55-year-old’s attempt to overthrow Jeremy Corbyn succeed, she would becomes the Labour party’s first female and first openly gay leader.

This comes as Andrea Leadsom, the anti-same-sex marriage and pro-Brexit Conservative withdrew from the Tory leadership race, leaving Theresa May’s bid uncontested. Ms May is now expected to succeed David Cameron as Prime Minister in the coming days – though she has a less than impressive record on gay rights herself.

Ms Eagle came out publicly in 1997, becoming just the second female MP to do so.

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