U.K. Labour candidate Wes Streeting did not call colleague Diane Abbott a 'silly woman'

By: Iryna Hnatiuk
June 4 2024

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U.K. Labour candidate Wes Streeting did not call colleague Diane Abbott a 'silly woman'

Wes Streeting did not call Diane Abbott a “silly woman”


The Verdict Fake

Wes Streeting didn't insult Diane Abbott. The video shared on social media was altered and the words “silly woman” were added.

Claim ID e666fe5f


A video was shared on social media (archived here) claiming to show Labour's shadow health secretary, Wes Streeting, calling a Labour parliamentary candidate, Diane Abbott, a "silly woman" on a BBC TV show. The text part of the publication on X (formerly Twitter) says: "Wes Streeting calls Diane Abbott a 'silly woman' on Politics Live." 

The video has been seen by more than 80,000 people at the time of writing. 

However, the video has been doctored, and the audio has been added. In the original, the words "silly woman" are absent.

In fact

Wes Streeting appeared on the BBC show Politics Live on June 3, 2024. The host mentions a social media post by Diane Abbott, the Labour candidate for Hackney North and Stoke Newington. In the clip, while the screen is not showing Streeting's face, a man's voice says, "silly woman." 

However, the recording on iPlayer clearly shows that this was never said. In the original version of the broadcast, when the post was shown on screen, Streeting remained silent, and no one said, "silly woman."

In response, Wes Streeting posted on X: "A fake video is circulating from Politics Live today. It contains words I did not use. People can check the original footage on iPlayer, but so far it has only fooled the gullible."

Wes Streeting says the video is fake on social media (Source: X, Wes Streeting, Screenshot)

The account that posted the original clip is known for “shitposting," a type of satirical or parody content that often proliferates online and is not intended to be taken seriously. However, when these types of posts make it outside of the community it was originally posted in – as in this case – it is often entirely out of context and therefore treated as real. 

The verdict

Wes Streeting did not insult fellow Labour parliamentary candidate Diane Abbott during his appearance on the BBC on June 3, 2024. The video shared on social media was altered, and the words "silly woman" were added. That’s why we have marked the video as fake.

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