Tory MP Johnny Mercer told to 'get some sleep' after 'rude' Inbetweeners byelection comment

Tory MP Johnny Mercer told to 'get some sleep' after 'rude' Inbetweeners byelection comment
Voters head for the polls in Selby and Ainsty by-election

Tory MP Johnny Mercer has been criticised for comparing a new Labour MP to an Inbetweeners character.

In a byelection yesterday, Keir Mather, 25, won the previous Conservative stronghold of Selby and Ainsty for Labour by overturning a majority of 20,000.

At 25, he will become the so-called 'Baby of the House' - the youngest member of the House of Commons.

Asked by Sky News whether he welcomed "an injection of youth into parliament" last night, Mercer replied: "I think it's always good to get new people in politics, but I think we mustn't become a repeat of The Inbetweeners".

Asked what he meant by the comparison, Mercer said: "You've got to have people who have actually done stuff. This guy has been at Oxford University more than he's been in a job.

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"You put a chip in him there and he just relays Labour lines, and the problem is people have kind of had enough of that.

"They want people who are authentic. People who have worked in that constituency, who know what life is like, understand what life is like to live, work and raise a family in communities like theirs.

"I'm afraid I don't agree with this style of politics. It's exactly why people like me couldn't vote in the 2015 election, because you've got people with nothing to do with the constituency just dropped in - put a chip in them and they'll start parroting Labour Party politics."

Later, the comments were put to Labour's Baroness Chapman, who accused Mercer of being "disrespectful" to the people of Selby and Ainsty.

"There is such a thing as being gracious in defeat, Johnny," she said.

She added: "How rude are you today? You need to get some sleep."

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