LONDON — Crazy, corrosive, daft, foolish, dangerous, and "a wazzock." British politicians lined up on Monday to throw shade at the Republican presidential frontrunner.
During an unprecedented debate in the Houses of Parliament, it was claimed that Donald Trump was “poisonous” and should be banned from entering Britain.
Members of Parliament gathered to debate whether Trump should be turned away at the border after more than half a million citizens signed an online petition demanding that Britain become a Trump-free zone.
Most of the politicians speaking in the non-binding debate said there should be no outright ban. Instead they vied to offer the most eye-catching putdown.
One MP said: “We British are pretty good at roasting beef. Why don’t we roast Trump instead?”
Alas, a room filled predominantly with stuffed gray suits—contained no one to rival the “Queen of Mean,” Lisa Lampanelli, and the Comedy Central roasters. What they lacked in wit, they made up for in vehemence.
Trump was lampooned as “stupid,” a “hate leader,” a “buffoon,” a “bigot,” and “the Orange Prince of American Self-Publicity.”
Victoria Atkins, a Conservative Member of Parliament, made history with a slur against Trump that has never previously been uttered in the Houses of Parliament.
“His comments regarding Muslims are wrong. His policy to close borders if he’s elected as president is bonkers,” she said. “And if he met one or two of my constituents in one of the many excellent pubs in my constituency then they may well tell him that he is a wazzock.”
The Urban Dictionary suggests it may have originally meant “bull’s penis,” but to most Brits wazzock just means idiot.
Tulip Siddiq, a Labour MP, said he was far more dangerous than that.
She claimed that there had been an increase in hate crimes since Trump threatened to ban all Muslims from entering the U.S.
“His words are not comical. His words are not funny. His words are poisonous. They risk inflaming tension between vulnerable communities,” she said. “Hate crime is being inflamed and stoked by the words that Donald Trump is using.”
Fellow Muslim MP Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh criticized the majority of her colleagues who said they would prioritize freedom of speech. His words, she said, were directed at “me, my family, and my children.”
She said she would be banned from travelling to the U.S. to make her case, and Britain should respond in kind.
Labour’s Shadow Home Affairs minister, Jack Dromey, also made the case that Trump should become the 85th person to be banned from entering Britain.
“Donald Trump is a fool, he is free to be a fool. He is not free to do a dangerous fool on our shores,” said Dromey.
“I don’t think Donald Trump should be allowed within 1,000 miles of our shore because he would embolden the EDL [a right-wing protest group] on the one hand and fuel the flames of terrorism on the other hand.”
Most politicians agreed that Trump might be distasteful but he should not join the likes of Pamela Geller, Louis Farrakhan, and Mike Tyson on the list of Americans who have been banned from entering Britain.
“I have heard of a number of cases where people have been excluded for incitement, for hatred. I have never heard of one for stupidity and I’m not sure we should be starting now,” said Paul Scully.
Others pointed out that Britain had previously welcomed all sort of unsavory characters into the country, including Chinese and Saudi leaders as well as the Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, “whose crimes are far, far worse than anything Mr Trump can dream up,” said Sir Edward Leigh.
While most MPs were concerned about the right to free speech, Andrew Murrison, a former Conservative minister, seemed most worried about what would happen if Trump won.
“We have to be alive to the possibility that this ridiculous individual—that is Mr Trump—may be elected as president of the United States,” he said.
“In that event, would such a ban be overturned? Since it would be one almighty snub to the American citizens to which you have been referring.”
Prime Minister David Cameron has already signaled that Trump will not be banned from the U.K, despite the fervent wishes of 560,000 petition signers. “I think his remarks are divisive, stupid and wrong, and if he came to visit our country I think he would unite us all against him,” he has previously said.
Other arguments in favor of him being allowed to visit the U.K. veered from the practical, to the romantic—“goodness is better than evil”—and finally to the ridiculous:
“Let Trump in,” said Marcus Fysh. “Up close we might get to see what is underneath that hair.”