The BBC’s flagship politics show, Question Time, is a weekly opportunity to test the mood of the nation.
Each week, audience members on the left, right and everywhere in between are given the chance to tell politicians exactly what they think of them and the issues the day.
This week, an audience member took exception to Central Devon MP Mel Stride’s comments that the Conservative Party “is united around a progressive political agenda that is about looking after the least fortunate in our society”.
In response, an audience member branded these comments “appalling”.
‘I think for you to sit there and say that the Tories are looking after the most vulnerable in society is absolutel… https://t.co/b3KmrsTfIZ
— BBC Question Time (@BBC Question Time)
I think for you to sit there and say the Tories are looking after the most vulnerable in society is absolutely appalling.
The guest works as an information and advocacy officer, assisting people suffering from multiple sclerosis.
She lambasted the government’s benefit payments system for making those struggling “even more ill”, saying:
Every day I see people in my job who are ill, and who are being made even more ill because of PIP (personal independence payments).
The PIP process is making them even more unwell. It takes over a year to get to a tribunal and the decisions are usually overturned.
In the meantime, they’re left without their mobility cars, they can’t travel.
They’re living in absolute poverty, and that is all because of austerity and the Tory government.
In response, the Tory MP said that the government was “left in a mess” by the previous Labour government. Though presenter Fiona Bruce highlighted that the Labour government “was last in power nine years ago”.
As well as the PIP process, the government’s roll-out of Universal Credit has bee widely criticised for leaving benefits claimants with no money and forcing many to use food banks. Figures also suggest that homelessness has risen every year since the Tories moved into government in 2010.
Twitter was full of praise for the audience member's intervention.