Video feature: The best political fist fights

Fighting in Ukraine's parliament. You wouldn't see that sort of thing in the Commons. Or would you?
Fighting inUkraine's parliament. You wouldn't see that sort of thing in the Commons. Or would you?

Sometimes words just don't cut it and even the most grandiose political operator is reduced to his fists. politics.co.uk looks at some of the top political fist fights from around the world.

By Graham Fahy and Ian Dunt

Labour MP Eric Joyce was suspended this morning, after a brawl involving a headbutt in one of the Commons bars. Violence in the mother of parliaments is generally frowned upon, but politics is a heated business and political fisticuffs aren't as rare as you might imagine. Here we have look at some of the most alarming political fights since, well, since YouTube was invented.

1) John Prescott's popularity actually improved after he lashed out against a protestor in Rhyl, north Wales. The deputy PM was pelted by an egg as he prepared to address a political rally, but what really impressed onlookers was the speed with which he delivered that left jab. This is a man who has fought before.


2) Argentinean legislator Graciela Camano's vicious slap on Carlos Kunkel provided evidence of ninja-like calm and planning. Note the way she observers her victim, casually blocks his defences and then delivers a bruising strike to the face, all while maintaining a saintly expression.

3) What works in parliament works in the TV studios. "He's a scoundrel. Look at his face, he's a schizoid" is not the sort of thing you typically hear on Newsnight, but Russia Today hosts seemed entirely unperturbed when debate became heated on their discussion show. Vladimir Zhirinovsky, leader of the liberal Democratic Party, seems like he has childhood issues he needs to deal with.

4) In the Ukraine, eggs and tear gas are added to a rather impressive brawl in the parliament building. Watch out for the lawmaker crawling over a balcony edge to bring down his opponent. There are Tory MPs who would happily watch John Bercow having to talk while being defended by umbrellas.

5) We had to save this one for the end, not least because it seemingly involves the entirety of an opposition party in New Delhi. Any incident where parts of the assembly building are "hurled like spears" automatically makes the others look trivial.

Comments

Load in comments
Politics @ Lunch

Friday lunchtime. Your Inbox. It's a date.