The Birmingham Yardley MP condemned her own performance at the first regional hustings event in Liverpool on Saturday. The backbench MP described the format of the event as “ridiculous” as each of the five candidates were given just 40 seconds to answer a question. She admitted her responses “fell flat”. Ms Phillips wrote in The Guardian: “The hustings was awful. I was awful because I was trying to hit a million different lines and messages in 40 seconds.
“Some were my lines, some were other people’s and it fell flat.”
Ms Phillips is fighting for the leadership of the party against the Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer, Shadow Business Secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey, Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry and backbench MP Lisa Nandy.
Ms Phillips is yet to receive a single nomination from the 14 CLPs who have made a decision.
Sir Keir currently leads the way with 11 nominations and Ms Long-Bailey with three.
Ms Phillips said: “I might not look the most like a Prime Minister in this race, because apparently looking like a prime minister is a thing.
“I cannot win that war, so I am going to stop fighting it.
“I am going to do the thing that made tens of thousands of people ask me to run to be the leader. I am going to say what I think. I am going to give honest answers.
“I probably won’t win, but I am guessing that I might just inspire others to give it a go too.”
On Sunday the Birmingham Yardley MP once again got herself in a tangle over Labour’s position on Brexit.
Ms Phillips said she is not an “uber Remainer” but later added it was not an “honest position” to close off future options or alliances.
She told Sky’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday: “I don’t think this is a conversation that’s even up for debate at the moment.