Former Army officer and now MP Bob Stewart knows how to get himself in the media for all the wrong reasons. This ability to end up covered in rather more than embarrassment was honed during his time in Bosnia, when he was caught having an affair and thereby came to be nicknamed “Bonking Bob”. Then, only last year, he got caught exhibiting the kind of sexist behaviour even Leslie Phillips might have bodyswerved.
Bob Stewart - beyond bonking
After Spectator assistant editor Isabel Hardman revealed that an MP had approached her with the opening gambit of “I want to talk to the totty”, it did not take long (a) for said MP to become “v contrite” and apologise, and (b) for the Super Soaraway Currant Bun to name Stewart as the culprit (while reminding the world about the “bonking”, natch). As any fule kno, the correct descriptive term for Ms Hardman is “journalist”.
So Stewart knows the perils of opening mouth prematurely. But there are political advantage points to score, and so when MPs debated the abuse to which they have routinely been subjected, and the Tories needed to show that this phenomenon affected them too, up stood Bob and claimed his kids got abuse at school because of him.
“A Tory MP has revealed his 13-year-old son's teacher told classmates to shun him because his father is a Conservative … Bob Stewart, the MP for Beckenham, south London, said the teacher's action took the abuse suffered by MPs and their families to a ‘new level’”, reported the Standard. And the Murdoch Sun was outraged.
“Bob Stewart, a hero vet of the Bosnian war, made the revelation during a debate on the abuse hurled at politicians, adding that all four of his children have been ‘hassled’ because of his job … Shouts of ‘shame’ could be heard in the chamber as the Tory backbencher hit out at the teacher's behaviour against his son during the last general election”. The response from the right was all that could have been expected.
Kate McCann of the increasingly downmarket and desperate Telegraph gasped “Wow. Tory MP Bob Stewart says his son's teacher told the rest of the class not to speak to him because of his Dad's job. How awful”, while Carrie Symonds, senior propaganda droid at CCHQ, snarked “Kinder, gentler politics”, and leader of the Welsh Tories Andrew RT Davies mounted his high horse to tell “Very disturbing to see a teacher ENCOURAGING bullying. No place for this whatsoever”. And there was more.
A Tweeter called Lady Durrant shrieked “Unacceptable! This teacher should be sacked as should any left wing teacher who tries to brainwash our children”, while self-confessed conservative Richard Munslow decided that “The teacher involved should be removed of their position with effect. Politics has no place in schools”.
But now the Mirror has identified the school concerned, and spoken to the head teacher. They have reported that “The headteacher of the school, which we have chosen not to name, said no complaint had been received from Mr Stewart or any of his family”. That head teacher also said “We hope to meet with Mr Stewart very soon to discuss the matter so we can establish the facts and take action as appropriate”. Well, quite.
Bonking Bob didn’t respond to the Mirror’s request for comment. I wonder why.