Prime Minister David Cameron called Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn a “small c conservative” as he mocked his question about social housing during Prime Minister’s Questions.
Corbyn was trying to challenge the government’s newly announced scheme to fund the regeneration of Britain’s worst council estates when Cameron made the comment, in effect labelling Corbyn as someone who wants to keep people stuck in the past.
Here is the transcript of their exchange (emphasis ours).
Corbyn: Will the Prime Minister guarantee that all existing tenants of the council estates earmarked for redevelopment will be rehoused in new council housing in their current communities with the same tenancy conditions as they currently have?
Cameron: We’re not going to able to deal with these sink estates unless we get the agreement of tenants, unless we show how we’re going to support homeowners, unless we show how we’re going to support communities. But isn’t it interesting Mr Speaker, who here is the small c conservative who’s saying to people ‘stay stuck in your sink estates, have nothing better than Labour gave you after the war.’ We’re saying, if you are a tenant, have the right to buy, if you want to buy a home, here’s help to save, if you’re in a sink estate, we’ll help you out.
On the face of it Corbyn’s question was quite reasonable, it seems mean to kick people out of their communities. But the problem is, he’s completely out of touch with the public — no one wants to live in in the high rise blocks that Cameron wants to get rid of. Literally no one. A poll by Ipsos/MORI of 1,018 people didn’t have a single respondent who said they wanted to live in a “tower block flat.”
A poll by Ipsos MORI of 1,018 people didn’t have a single respondent who said they wanted to live in a “tower block flat.”
It was a big mistake for Corbyn to use his questions on this issue. Cameron knows that the public is behind him, so didn’t even bother answering anything. Instead, he was able to call Corbyn a “small c conservative,” knowing full well that is the clip the news channels will use when they cover Prime Minister’s Questions later on today.
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