UK

Mhairi Black Gives Commons Maiden Speech, Twitter Explodes With Support

14/07/2015 19:19 BST | Updated 16/07/2015 11:59 BST

The SNP's Mhairi Black proved on Tuesday that age is no barrier to dominating the political agenda, setting the House of Commons ablaze with a barnstorming first-ever speech in the 300-year-old chamber.

The 20-year-old, Britain's youngest MP since 1667, cited Tony Benn, William Wallace and even Margaret Thatcher in her Westminster debut, laying claim to Labour's mantle of social justice.

It prompted rapturous reception from Angus Robertson, leader of the SNP in Westminster, Owen Jones, the embattled Socialist and newspaper columnist, fellow MPs, and even The Sun newspaper.

In her address, Black attacked David Cameron's administration for being the most "uncaring, uncompromising and out of touch governments that the UK has seen since Thatcher".

She also criticised George Osborne's welfare cuts, noting that as an MP with a housing allowance she was "the only 20-year old in the UK the chancellor is prepared to help with housing".

Black delivered one of the landmark moments of May's election when she defeated Labour's election campaign chief Douglas Alexander to win the Paisley and Renfrewshire South seat. On May 7 the SNP won all but three of Scotland's 59 constituencies - leaving Labour with just one.

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