A senior Conservative MP has been secretly recorded launching a foul-mouthed tirade against David Cameron, describing the Prime Minister as a "despicable creature without any real redeeming features".
Patrick Mercer, who was sacked as a shadow minister by Mr Cameron in 2007 for implying that racial abuse was part and parcel of Army life, told a guest at a party held by The London Magazine that he would "rather take a beggar off the street" and put him in Downing Street.
After details of the recorded conversation were made public Mr Mercer agreed that he had "had a conversation with a number of people" at the event, but he strongly denied the recording backed up the claims that he had insulted Mr Cameron.
The material had been obtained "by subterfuge," he complained, adding that he was consulting with his lawyers.
Mr Mercer, MP for Newark and a well-known critic of the Prime Minister, is said to have told the guest that Mr Cameron would face a backbench coup in the new year.
He described Mr Cameron as "the worst politician in British history since William Gladstone".
Asked about the recording afterwards, Mr Mercer said his remarks were meant in a "light-hearted" way.
"I certainly didn't make those comments in the way that's being suggested," he said.
The Conservative Party said it had no comment on the alleged outburst but added that such remarks did not necessarily merit disciplinary action.Reuse content