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Mail: Harman 'fails to answer charges'

The Daily Mail says Harriet Harman failed to answer the newspaper's central points. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman was accused of issuing a denial "full of pedantry and obfuscation" by the newspaper that made allegations about her historic involvement in paedophile rights campaigns.

The Daily Mail claimed the shadow culture secretary has failed to answer the main charges it has levelled against her in a series of articles and has instead denied allegations it has not made.

It follows Ms Harman's decision to release a detailed statement accusing the newspaper of a "politically-motivated smear campaign".

A Daily Mail spokesman said: "The belated statements today of Ms Harman and her husband - full of pedantry and obfuscation - failed to answer the Mail's central points and deny allegations the Mail has not made.

"More pertinently they have failed to utter a word of contrition or sorrow about The National Council for Civil Liberties' closeness to the notorious Paedophile Information Exchange, anorganisation that validated the activities of a monster like Jimmy Savile.

"Nor do they utter a word of apology to the victims of PIE."

Harman: Mail 'smear' shows 'hatred of my values'

The Daily Mail have attempted to smear Harriet Harman "by way of guilt of association", the Labour Deputy leader has claimed in a statement.

The editor and proprietor of the Daily Mail are entitled to their political views and they are of course entitled to oppose what I stand for but they are not entitled to use their newspaper to smear me with innuendo because they disagree with me politically and hate my values.

– Harriet Harman, Labour Deputy Leader

Given the seriousness and the aggression with which the Daily Mail are pursuing me, I feel that I need to put the facts in the public domain.

– Harriet Harman, Labour Deputy Leader

Commenting on an allegation that she supported the lowering of the age of consent to 10, she said:"This is not true.

"I supported the equalisation of the age of consent (as set out in the National Council for Civil Liberties document "priorities and strategy for the executive committee June 1981") by making the age of consent the same for homosexual as well as for heterosexual sex."


Harman denies 'horrific' paedophile rights claims

Harriet Harman Credit: REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

Labour's deputy leader Harriet Harman has denied claims from the Daily Mail that she supported lowering the age of consent to 10, scrapping the law on incest, or sought to water down the law on child pornography.

"They have accused me of being an apologist for child sex abuse, of supporting a vile paedophile organisation, of having a relaxed attitude to paedophilia and of watering down child pornography laws. These are horrific allegations and I strongly deny them all of them," she said in a statement.

Mrs Harman and her MP husband Jack Dromey broke their silence after the newspaper ran a series of stories about their actions while officials at the National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL) in the 1970s.

The body granted 'affiliate' status to the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE), and is said to have lobbied for loosening of laws. Former health secretary Patricia Hewitt, who was also involved in the NCCL, has also faced accusations, but not commented.

Harman condemns 'paedophile rights smear campaign'

Labour Party deputy leader Harriet Harman has condemned a "politically-motivated smear campaign" amid questions about her alleged historic links to paedophile rights campaigns.

Deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman at her Party's annual conference in Brighton in September last year. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA

Harriet Harman: It's like raining men in the Tory party

Labour's deputy leader Harriet Harman has accused the Conservative party of having a "problem with women" after claiming there was a pattern of replacing senior women in public positions with men.

"My concern is that we're having a sort of cull of senior, authoritative women and they're all being replaced by men," she told BBC 1's Andrew Marr Show.

Michael Gove replied: "We don't have a problem with women in Tory party, we made one Prime Minister".

Although he admitted there was a broader problem of attracting women into public life.

Harman: Clegg's response to Rennard 'a cop out'

Labour deputy leader Harriet Harman has called Nick Clegg's response to the allegations against Lord Rennard "a cop out" and claimed the women who made the complaints are "being hung out to dry".

Ms Harman said: "The Lib Dem women who complained about Lord Rennard did a brave thing in coming forward and making an official complaint. But now they are being hung out to dry and accused of suffering from 'distress'.

Labour deputy leader Harriet Harman. Credit: Chris Ison/PA Wire

"They have complained about inappropriate behaviour but Clegg says unless proved beyond reasonable doubt - ie that Rennard committed a criminal offence - the Lib Dems can take no action. This is a cop out.

"Nick Clegg must get off the fence otherwise it will send out a signal to any woman who suffers sexual harassment that she needn't bother to complain."


Harriet Harman plays down Balls' Dome comparison

Deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman has played down comments by Ed Balls comparing the HS2 project to the Millenium Dome.

Harriet Harman played down Ed Balls' HS2 comments on the Andrew Marr Show. Credit: BBC/Andrew Marr show

Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, Ms Harman said Mr Balls did not volunteer the comparison during an interview with a Mail on Sunday journalist.

The shadow chancellor told the newspaper the Dome was a mistake, adding "I think you should learn from your mistakes".

Ms Harman said: "We absolutely support better north-south lines, we are in favour of rail infrastructure for commuters and also for long-distance travellers and freight but not at any cost and what Ed Balls is saying is we have to keep a strong eye on the costs as well as on the benefits."

Harman not in favour of lads' mags supermarket ban

Labour deputy leader Harriet Harman has said she is against lads' magazines in supermarkets - but is not in favour of a ban.

Speaking as one of the guests on The Agenda with Tom Bradby to be broadcast on ITV at 10.35pm tonight, Ms Harman said: "It's possible for there to be a view and to have a campaign without being accused of banning something.

"I think that women in the 21st century can aspire to more than being sex objects for the titivation of men.

"Would you like your daughter to be on the front page of Zoo or Nuts or Loaded?

"It is a very powerful image that a woman's value increases with the lack of clothing that she's wearing. Don't accuse me of trying to ban it, I'm just against it."

Harman: 'Most people have never heard of McBride'

Harriet Harman has denied that the Labour Party conference is being overshadowed by Damian McBride's book.

Speaking to Daybreak, the Deputy Leader said that in fact most people have never heard of the former Labour spin doctor.

Harman also said that the sorts of practices McBride claims to have undertaken do not occur in today's Labour Party:

She said: "Ed Miliband doesn't do that sort of thing, and doesn't allow anybody who works for him to behave like that."

Licence payers will be 'dismayed' by BBC evidence

Shadow culture secretary Harriet Harman. Credit: PA Wire

Licence fee payers will be "dismayed" by the evidence given by BBC executives past and present about massive payoffs to staff, a senior Labour MP warned.

Harriet Harman MP, shadow culture secretary, said: “Clearly the interests of the licence fee payers were not properly protected and there was a failure of governance.

"The Charter renewal process, and the debate around it, will be the opportunity to re-examine those governance issues."

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