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Britain’s New Leading Ladies Cause Controversy Over Their Outfit Choices

Daniel Kim Views  

Victoria Starmer, the wife of newly-appointed British Prime Minister Keir Starmer and Deputy Prime Minister Angela Rayner caused a stir by wearing clothes from the same brand.

The Telegraph reported that Rayner wore clothes from the British brand ME + EM for three days in a row.

Rayner garnered attention for rising from a low-income family and enduring numerous hardships to a powerful position in the government.

On the day of the general election, the newly appointed First Lady Victoria appeared in front of supporters wearing a red dress from the same brand.

Founded in 2009, ME+EM was created by designer Clare Hornby and is closely related to the Labour Party. Clare’s husband, Johnny Hornby, is the managing director of global advertising company TBWA, which led Tony Blair’s 2001 re-election campaign and secured a win for the Labour Party.

Following Johnny Hornby’s success, Clare Hornby’s ME+EM also gained popularity, and the couple was recently named “Most Influential Couple of the Month” by the British magazine Tatler.

Rayner wore a bright mint suit from ME+EM to the New UK Prime Minister’s inauguration speech on July 5, an orange dress from the same brand to the first cabinet meeting the following day, and a red dress from the same brand to the cabinet meeting the next day.

The new First Lady and Deputy Prime Minister’s choice to wear ME+EM for their official appearances drew attention.

According to a brand spokesperson, website traffic for Victoria’s red dress on election night has tripled since that day, and traffic for the outfits both women wore is still rising.

Rayner’s mint suit to New Prime Minister Keir Starmer’s inauguration speech cost 550 pounds (approximately $730), and the orange dress she wore the next day cost 227 pounds (approximately $300).

Some conservative commentators and online viewers criticized the cost of Rayner’s clothes as too expensive for a Labour Party figure who promotes pro-worker policies, in addition to crude comments that the clothes don’t suit her.

The British press criticized these remarks as clear instances of sexism. Guardian columnist Zoe Williams noted that, unlike their male counterparts, female politicians face undue scrutiny, pointing out that it is peculiar for people to take issue with a woman being elected to public office and then making her wardrobe a topic of concern.

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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