- A British minister littered her speech to parliament with references to S Club 7 hits.
- Environment Minister Thérèse Coffey referenced songs including “Bring It All Back,” and “Reach” during a speech about the regulation of chemicals after the UK leaves the EU.
- “Have you ever considered what life was like before you became a Member of Parliament?” Coffey said, a reference to S Club 7’s “Have You Ever.”
- Pop culture and joke references are more common in UK Parliament than you might think: just last week, the prime minister referenced a popular insurance advert, reportedly as part of a dare.
A British government minister decided to make her speech to the UK Parliament about the regulations of chemicals more exciting by littering it with references to hits by the ’90s pop group S Club 7.
Thérèse Coffey, environment minister at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and a member of the Conservative party, began her speech on the regulation of chemicals after the UK leaves the EU by asking: “Have you ever considered what life was like before you became a Member of Parliament?”
The reference to S Club 7’s “Have You Ever” was just one of a number of references to the band’s hits, including “Never Had a Dream Come True,” “Bring It All Back,” “Reach,” “The Colour Blue,” “Show Me Your Colours,” and “Bring The House Down” that Coffey peppered throughout her speech.
“I never had a dream come true until I was elected to Parliament,” Coffey said. But she said she would “take myself back” to school, when she was inspired by colours, “whether it was the colour blue or a range of colours that appealed to us all.”
Coffey said that chemicals are a key part of fireworks, reminiscing on fireworks exploding over London’s Big Ben as “that special evening when we were going to reach for the stars, but fortunately did not bring the House down.”
Coffey then opened the floor to debate by saying she would later “bring my speech back.”
S Club 7 sold more then 10 million albums worldwide and won two BRIT awards.
The insertion of pop culture references into serious speeches is surprisingly common in UK politics.
Prime Minister Theresa May said “Simples” – a phrase from a popular UK insurance commercial – during a statement on Brexit last week. She did so as part of a dare with another member of parliament with tea at The Ritz as a prize, according to the UK’s Mail on Sunday.
And member of parliament Penny Mordaunt repeatedly used poultry-related words like “cock,” “lay,” and “laid” in 2014 speech.
She was criticised by other politicians for trivilaizing parliament, and later said that she did it for a dare.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.