'Poor old Cleggers': Nick Clegg is David Cameron's condom, says Boris Johnson

The mayor described 'poor old Cleggers' as a 'lapdog-cum-prophylactic protection device' used to shield the Prime Minister

Nick Clegg is David Cameron's condom, according to the latest insult directed at the Deputy Prime Minister by London's irrepressible Mayor, Boris Johnson.

During an appearance this morning on LBC 97.3, the Mayor of London said that "poor old Cleggers" acted as a protective barrier for the Prime Minister.

Johnson made the remarks while responding to Clegg's criticism of Chancellor George Osborne's latest plans to slash the welfare budget by a further £12bn.

He said: "He's there to serve a very important ceremonial function as David Cameron's lapdog-cum-prophylactic protection device for all the difficult things that David Cameron has to do."

When asked to clarify, Johnson said that the Deputy Prime Minister was “a kind of shield”, describing him as “a lapdog who’s been skinned and turned into a shield to protect”.

Johnson and Clegg have used their appearances on LBC 97.3 to engage in an increasingly public spat. The Mayor has also described Clegg as a “wobbling jelly of indecision and vacillation”.

Last summer, the two politicians exchanged insults over which was the lazier. Nick Clegg, who has weekly phone in programme on LBC, told listeners: “I’m going to call him Slacker Johnson. He’s only on once a month.” Boris Johnson retorted that Nick Clegg was an “idle bum” with spare time in his “ceremonial role as Lib leader.”

Mr Clegg also said that if he ever went for a drink with the mayor, he would “probably pour the drink over his blonde mop”.

But the latest insult was an oblique reference to tensions inside the Conservative Party over the Prime Minister’s seemingly close working relationship with the Lib Dem leader.

As the two parties start to draw battle lines for next year’s general election, the Lib Dems claim to have a list of harsh measures the Conservatives would have liked to impose had the junior coalition partner allowed them to, and Cameron similarly claims to have a “black book” of genuine Conservative policies blocked by the Lib Dems.

But some Tories suspect that these are hollow claims intended to disguise how close Cameron and Clegg are to one another in their political views – hence the suggestion that Clegg is a condom protecting Cameron from the becoming the father of policies for which he he does not really want to have to take responsibility.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
food + drink
Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
News
UK Border Control
i100
Arts and Entertainment
TV
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Receptionist / Office Administrator - Full or Part Time

£14600 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Established in 2003 the company...

Recruitment Genius: Social Media & Content Marketing Executive

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing, Google certi...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 business...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has won the award ...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn