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Labour aide labels Queen of England lifelong 'benefit scrounger'

London, Wed, 08 Feb 2012 ANI

London, Feb 8 (ANI): A Labour aide shocked Britain when he made some remarks on Twitter about the Queen "scrounging benefits" off taxpayer's money.


Matt Zarb-Cousin, a researcher for shadow justice minister Andy Slaughter, posted the message on the day the monarch renewed her vow to serve the country after 60 years on the throne.


"Congratulations this morning to Queen Elizabeth II. 60 years of scrounging benefits off the taxpayer without being caught," the Sun quoted him as tweeting.


Although he faced much criticism online, he initially stood by his remarks.


"Oh I insulted the Queen. How very dare I. #growup," he tweeted.


Later, however, he apologised on the microblogging site and said that he did not mean to offend anyone.


"To clarify earlier comments about the Queen: it was a joke and wasn't meant to be taken literally. I didn't mean to cause offence and apologise," he said.


Tory MP Charlie Elphicke told a newspaper that people all over the country would have been "disgusted" by Zarb-Cousin's suggestion.


"This is a shameful slur against the Queen," he said.


The aide's boss Andy Slaughter, an MP for Hammersmith, also called the comments "unacceptable".


"The Queen has given great service to our country and these comments are totally unacceptable," Slaughter said.


"I've spoken to the member of staff in the strongest terms and he has apologised for his comments," he added. (ANI)


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