Tory peer: benefits encourage the poor to "breed"

Downing Street quick to distance itself from new Conservative peer's remarks.

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Oh dear. Another week, another Tory speaking out of turn.

This time it was Howard Flight -- who became a Tory peer just last week. He told the Evening Standard:

We're going to have a system where the middle classes are discouraged from breeding because it's jolly expensive. But for those on benefits, there is every incentive. Well, that's not very sensible.

It's not the first time that Flight, formerly an MP, has spoken out of turn. In 2005, he was removed as a candidate after he told a meeting of Conservative Way Forward that if elected, the party would make more spending cuts than they had promised in the campaign.

Downing Street was quick to distance itself from the remarks, pointing out that he is not a member of the government and saying: "Clearly we do not agree with those remarks".

Samira Shackle is a freelance journalist, who tweets @samirashackle. She was formerly a staff writer for the New Statesman.