Poll: which is your favourite Dennis Skinner moment?

‘Beast of Bolsover’ Dennis Skinner

Labour’s veteran MP Dennis Skinner is in his 88th year, but still remains the party’s most fiery MP, famous for his now-traditional quips at each Queen’s Speech, blistering put-downs of Tory front-benchers and occasional corrections of errant reporters.

The ‘beast of Bolsover’ has also been being expelled from the Commons chamber at least ten times – including, memorably, for once calling David Owen a ‘pompous sod’ and when reprimanded, only agreeing to withdraw the word ‘pompous’.

Sadly, some of these moments took place before cameras were allowed in the chamber – but below is a selection of six that were caught on camera.

Which would be your pick of the bunch? Answer the poll at the end:

1. ‘Dodgy Dave’

Skinner’s condemnation of David Cameron was one of the occasions for which he was expelled, after refusing to retract it:

2. Love the NHS, hate UKIP

Skinner ‘welcomed’ a new UKIP MP to the Commons with a withering attack that praised the NHS and the ‘united nations’ of medics who had saved his life with a heart bypass:

3. ‘The first race is half past two’

In 2017, Skinner’s traditional quip to deflate the pomp and ceremony of the Queen’s Speech also took aim at the royals’ luxury lifestyle, as the Queen was heading to Ascot straight from Parliament:

4. Keep out of Syria – ‘You don’t know who the enemy is’

Skinner’s intervention against military action in Syria is all the more relevant now, as he warns about Turkey bombing the Kurds helping defeat ISIS:

5. ‘Murdoch Maitlis’

When the BBC’s Emily Maitlis tried to spin Skinner’s longstanding lack of desire for a front-bench position as a refusal to serve under Jeremy Corbyn, Skinner took her to task – live on national TV – to remind her she doesn’t work for Rupert Murdoch:

6. ‘Boy George’ and the lines of coke

In another moment that saw him expelled from the chamber, Skinner talked of the economic hardships caused by the Tories with a famous barb aimed then-Chancellor George Osborne:

Which is your favourite? Have your say below – or if it’s another, put a link in the comments.

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  1. DS: ‘Half of them (toerags) are crooks’

    Bercow: ‘You must withdraw or retract that remark’

    DS: ‘Alright – Half of them AREN’T crooks!’


    1. That one’s always been my favourite funny quip by a mile but “First race is half past two” isn’t bad either 🙂

      “United Nations heart bypass” is the one I guess might be closest to Dennis’ heart if he were voting so it’s getting my vote too.

  2. Skwawky, there is a possibility that Lexiters could damage the future of the UK by voting to support Johnson and you publish this frivolous nonsense!!!

    1. You can always tell a Tory by the way they wrap themselves in the flag before they attack -the socialist-enemy.
      There is a possibility that Blairite Remainers, en route to the Liberal Party, will take one last kick at the working class by showing their contempt for the referendum verdict and dragging the Labour Party, always anxious over unity, down with them.
      Or is there any difference between your view of the matter and Chuka’s?

  3. But the best by far….

    On being an MP

    “I am proud to stand up for my class, to say publicly that I am from good working-class stock. I am proud to be a trade unionist, to be a member of the Labour Party and to be a socialist. I stick to my principles.

    I know no other way in politics. I make mistakes, everybody does. Nobody is perfect. I have no monopoly on the best way of being an MP. I try not to let anybody down. I’ve sailed close to the wind in my life but always for the good of the cause, to champion those at the bottom of the pile who deserve better.”

    What says YOU, rh?

    1. Oh FFS, Toffee, do you *have* to be such an obsessive stalker within the ‘ale-house’ malhomie?

      But I’ll nibble the bait and chuck it back

      I like rate Skinner highly. The fact that his schtick comes from an upwardly mobile middle-class MP doesn’t worry me at all when he rings the bell. That’s show-biz. Like him, I come ” from good working-class stock”.

      One of the best evenings that I remember in the Labour Club was Skinner taking the piss out of the Thatcher regime. It was far better than most stand-ups and hit nails on the head.

      But he’s not God’s emissary on earth and isn’t always right.

      Any more questions?

      1. ‘The fact that his schtick comes from an upwardly mobile middle-class MP doesn’t worry me at all when he rings the bell’

        I have NO idea what that means or what MP you’re referring to if not Dennis, but I’ll continue.

        He’s 88, and been an MP longer than anybody else bar kenneth clarke.

        How’s that make him ‘upwardly mobile’? I don’t see Denis making a ‘great of 4 state’ position anytime before he finishes.

        ‘A stalker within the alehouse malhomie’

        Whatever that is…But not quite.

        Seems as though Dennis is allowed to hold on to his working class roots despite him being an ‘upwardly mobile middle class MP’

        Yet common scum like me, aren’t even permitted to claim as such without your almost immediate supercilious sneering.

        Oh, and nobody said he’s God’s emissary on earth so enough of THAT too: and you’ll note he already said he’s not always right in the quote, so no need for your repetition.

        Dennis voted against a 2nd ref like I’d have done.

        Dennis has always been a eurosceptic, like me.

        Dennis is working class, like me.

        Dennis is a socialist, like me.

        You don’t like Dennis, despite your claims to the contrary. It’s a front and it’s kidding nobody.

      2. Toffee – the fact is that you’re too dim to see past your own tiny preconceptions. It wouldn’t be hard for the doziest pretender to socialist virtue to understand that I do, indeed like and rate Dennis. Sorry that doesn’t fit your script. I suggest that you re-write it rather than try to re-write reality.

        ‘Upwardly mobile’? Simple – transition from miner to MP. Just putting your simplicities about class under examination. You’ll note – I don’t label the transition as a deficit. It just is.

        “common scum like me”. Your characterisation for the attraction of the sympathy vote. Not mine, or any imputation of mine. If you’ve got problems with your background, do’t use me as therapy. My criticisms are purely about what you say. I don’t give a f. about your class, religion, shoe size, sexuality, make-up etc. etc.

        “like me” [repeated]. So – you agree with Dennis Skinner. Fair enough. Just tell it as it is rather than trying to use it as an automatic validation of yourself.

        ‘mal homie’ – the opposite of cheerful ‘bon homie’. ‘Ale-house’ – just taking the piss out of one of your verbal tics that has stuck in my mind. Perhaps a low blow, but ‘Pub’ will really always do for me.

      3. ‘If you’ve got problems with your background, do’t use me as therapy’

        Hark at Dr dicky fraud, here?!

        Fuck me, but you need to get yer heid out yer arse, So far up yerself you’re almost coming out the other side.

        Use you as ‘therapy’ , indeed. Anyone on here only needs mention or bring class into the debate and immediately you’re off like one of Pavlov’s dogs you pious divvy.

        Dennis mentions his class background and it boy does grate with you on a private level. That much is a given. But you publicly ‘grin & bear it’; but we KNOW, dicky.

        …WE KNOW.

        Oh, and speak/type/write in English instead of using your own personal ‘in-joke’ idioms that nobody else understands, you colossal weirdo.

  4. Lexiters and Zionists such as John Mann who want to damage Corbyn should be short listed for expulsion by the chief whip.

    1. I’m not sure they’re worth the publicity.

      But we should note any PLP members voting for the Toady deal as Tory fellow-travellers for future reference.

  5. My favourite is the one where he said something like ‘half the tories are bent’. Withdraw- ‘ok half of them aren’t’!

    Skinner. Legend.

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