Today, David Cameron had to withdraw the word “idiot” in the House of Commons. His outburst at Ed Balls will do the Prime Minister no favours as he attempts to woo voters and change the image of the Conservative Party.
But gaffes are becoming a habit for David Cameron.
In October last year, the Prime Minister apologised to women for sexist comments after he told Labour’s Angela Eagle to “calm down dear” – again during a heated encounter at Prime Minister’s Questions. He was also forced to apologise to Nadine Dorries after failing to answer one of her questions properly and appearing to mockingly laugh at his fellow Conservative MP during PMQ’s.
Earlier this year, Cameron had to apologise when Ed Balls again was his target. The PM angered people with Tourett’s Syndrome and campaigners when he said “it’s like having someone with Tourette’s permanently sitting opposite you” about the shadow Chancellor.
And just today, David Cameron has again made an apology for ageist comments made to Dennis Skinner when he replied to the Labour MP: “Well, the honourable gentleman has the right, at any time, to take his pension and I advise him to do so”.
David Cameron’s continuous personal insults and manner have directly impacted on the ability of himself, his party and the coalition to connect with the public. When his comments anger women or make him appear like a public school bully – an image he’s desperate to avoid, he’ll struggle to win the support he needs to win the next election. And the more apologies he has to make, the more incompetent he looks. David Cameron is becoming a PR disaster.
Maybe it’s little wonder then that another recent apology from the Prime Minister was made to his own councillors for the poor performance by the Conservative Party at the local elections.