Have you ever wondered how tense things have become in the Tory-DUP talks? Wonder no more…
It's not a Coalition you dick
— Sir Robert Syms MP (@RobertSyms) June 11, 2017
Here we see an elected Tory MP calling a member of the public a dick. I believe at head office they call this “interacting with the voters.” Admittedly, it is slightly more human than May.
I can only assume Robert is so testy because the voter is right. If the Tories do form a coalition, and offer the DUP cabinet jobs, they would be breaking the Good Friday agreement. Creating cracks in a fairly young peace process tends to leave your teeth on edge.
Many have taken to Twitter to express outrage. Several have pointed out that Tweets like these might get them fired from their jobs.
Others have gone further suggesting that, given taxpayers fund MPs, Robert was essentially mouthing off to his boss.
You're speaking to one of your (more reluctant) employers there Robert. Perhaps mind your language, you might end up getting sacked.
— Sarah Biadroca (@sarahbia) June 11, 2017
Both Twitter users are right, Robert Syms’ behaviour drags the House of Commons and all its members into disrepute. Insulting voters rarely convinces them to get on your side. It actually pushes them away.
The target of Syms’ tweets is a construction worker from Liverpool who found the situation laughable. He was quoted in iNews as saying:
I, like most of the UK, are confused at the legitimacy of the new government consisting of the Conservatives and the DUP. Both due to the potential conflict with the Good Friday Agreement and also the Conservative mandate outlining that there would be no coalition
Robert is clearly on edge. A cursory glance of his Twitter feed suggests that he tends to be a more sensitive soul. He has previously retweeted people calling for George Osborne to apologise for calling May a “dead woman walking.” As well as repeatedly whining about a lack of Brexiteers on the BBC coverage.
So what has emboldened him to take such a hard line approach with his voters? Well, Robert holds the Tory safe seat of Poole in Dorset. He has failed to attend hustings to campaign in neighbouring constituencies. He has had an expenses scandal, used his funded office to employ both his wives and has backed failed Prime Ministers David Cameron and Theresa May.
Put simply, Robert Syms is a product of a political culture that insulates him from his constituents and the fact he feels free to name call on Twitter is proof of that.