Putting aside all talk of the leak of the so-called Panama Papers, the kerfuffle which followed did result in UK Prime Minister David Cameron being labelled ‘Dodgy Dave’, not exactly a term of endearment and one that might well follow him during the rest of his political career.
It is a description that some of us might find so fitting, considering the ‘welfare reforms’ that have been pursued by his government that have led to pain, misery and even death while others have been lining their pockets at our expense.
Of course, the 84-year-old veteran Labour MP for Bolsover who coined Dodgy Dave name, Dennis Skinner, was excluded from the House of Commons for the remainder of the day for using unparliamentarily language after he twice refused to withdraw the word when requested to do so by the Speaker.
In the Commons, Skinner said “I didn’t receive a proper answer (earlier), maybe Dodgy Dave will answer it now?”
Speaker of the House John Bercow told Skinner he’d have to withdraw the word ‘dodgy’ or face ejection from the Commons chamber for the rest of the day. But Skinner is not easily frightened. He replied: “This man has done, to divide this nation, more than anybody else. He’s looked after his own pocket – I still refer to him as Dodgy Dave. Do what you like.”
Immediately excluded by the Speaker, Mr Skinner left the chamber. Undeterred, the MP, nicknamed the Beast of Bolsover, later expanded on his words.
The Daily Mirror newspaper’s internet service Mirror Online quoted Mr Skinner saying: “I, like most people in the country, view tax havens as dodgy.
“Cameron looked after himself by maxing out the taxpayers’ credit card to pay a mortgage on expenses in Oxfordshire and even claimed to cut the wisteria off his chimney.
“So I, like most people in the country, think it dodgy he now earns a small fortune renting out a house in Notting Hill while living in Downing Street and Chequers.
“His poisonous division of the country between ‘strivers and skivers’ was also dodgy, particularly when you look now at what he was doing.
“Cameron is dodgy. He is Dodgy Dave. He’s refused to answer questions before. I’ve no regrets calling him what he is.
“I’ve done it before so it was a bit of a surprise to be chucked out of the House of Commons. No action was taken against Cameron when he called me a Dinosaur, though I did receive dozens of letters, including one from a vicar, criticising Cameron. The truth is I thought I might be pulled up for calling him a ‘scrounger’ but that seems to be acceptable.
“I’ll let the public be the judge and I know from the working people I speak to that they think Cameron is Dodgy Dave.”
Mind you, Cameron should think himself lucky that the abuse, if you can call it that was so mild. In the USA, a few years ago, one opposition senator described the leader of the majority party as ‘a complete a**hole’.
The Beast of Bolsover was quite mild really.