John Bercow has backed Angela Rayner for calling Boris Johnson and the Tories "scum", in his first Labour Conference appearance.

The former leader of the Commons admitted he would not have used her choice of words but said no one should get on their "moral high horses" about it.

Backing the deputy Labour leader he said Ms Rayner is a "damn good person" but she is "passionate" and "angry".

The former Tory was speaking at a Labour Party fringe event on Tuesday night.

Mr Bercow said: "I wouldn't have used that term, but I think that people are passionate: I know Angela well and she's a passionate person and she believes in her values and she feels very, very angry about what is being done to this country by a Conservative government.

John Bercow speaks to Johnathon Freedman at the Labour Party Conference (


Tom Bowles / Story Picture Agency)

"Do I think Angela Rayner, should be damned to perdition for that one comment?

"Absolutely not. I think Angela Rayner is a damn good person, she's got strong and good values.

"I wouldn't have used that expression but I don't think we should get on our moral high horses about it."

Mr Bercow switched allegiances to join the Labour Party earlier this summer, told a packed fringe event in Brighton what the vulnerabilities of the Conservatives are.

On the Labour Party's future he said Sir Keir Starmer has got to develop a “narrative” and clear policies”.

Mr Bercow revealed he had no interest in a career in the Labour Party and did not intend to stand for Parliament again.

However, he said he “absolutely” wanted to join a trade union in the near future but had not done so yet.

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