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Sir Keir Starmer bombarded Angela Rayner, his deputy, with repeated calls. They went unanswered. It was 5.30pm last Saturday and tensions were boiling over in the Labour Party high command after a

Sir Keir Starmer bombarded Angela Rayner, his deputy, with repeated calls. They went unanswered. It was 5.30pm last Saturday and tensions were boiling over in the Labour Party high command after a string of disastrous election results.
The party leader was desperate to get hold of Rayner. The fact that he was about to demote her in his shadow cabinet reshuffle was leaking. But intelligence was already reaching Starmers office that she might respond by triggering a coup to oust him.
Rayner, 41, was in a pub close to the partys Southside headquarters in Victoria Street, central London, where she had met Starmer on the eighth floor earlier that afternoon for a face-to-face meeting to discuss the shake-up.
This farcical standoff was the nadir