Incident happened during fiery parliamentary debate on Brexit
Twitter went into meltdown yesterday after Conservative MP Iain Duncan Smith branded new shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer QC a “second rate lawyer”.
During a heated parliamentary debate on Brexit, Duncan Smith — or IDS as he’s also known — took the opportunity to have a pop at Starmer. Despite being a QC at one of the country’s leading chambers, Doughty Street, IDS appeared to question Starmer’s legal accomplishments by branding him “second rate”.
Members of the profession quickly came out to defend one of their own.
Devereux Chambers’ resident tax expert Jo Maugham QC didn’t hold back in his critique of IDS.
Iain Duncan Smith: second rate intellect, third rate Tory leader and fourth rate human being.
— Jo Maugham QC (@JolyonMaugham) October 11, 2016
Meanwhile Matrix Chambers’ Sir Paul Jenkins branded the former Secretary of State “third rate”.
— Sir Paul Jenkins (@sirpauljenkins) October 10, 2016
Ex-shadow attorney general Karl Turner was quick to point out that Starmer, who studied the prestigious Bachelor of Civil Law degree (BCL) at Oxford University, had previously held the role of Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) at the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).
— Karl Turner MP (@KarlTurnerMP) October 10, 2016
Other lawyers reacted with similar contempt.
Is there a cure for IDS or is it terminal? @Keir_Starmer
— John Cooper (@John_Cooper_QC) October 10, 2016
IDS calls Kier Starmer a 'second rate lawyer'.
IDS: if he was worked in McDonalds, he would struggle to get a second star on his badge.
— Colm Nugent (@Wigapedia) October 11, 2016
So IDS, a tenth rate party leader, calls @Keir_Starmer a second rate lawyer. No really, he did. Honest guv.
— James Vine (@JamesPSVine) October 10, 2016
Hopefully IDS doesn’t need a lawyer anytime soon.