A Lancashire MP has been accused of taking part in a bet to get Prime Minister Theresa May to say 'simples' during a Brexit debate.
The PM used the phrase in a response to the Scottish National Party's Westminster leader Ian Blackford's concerns about Britain heading for a 'no deal' exit from the European Union.
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But it has now been claimed the remark - which has sparked a degree of anger on social media - followed a bet between South Ribble MP Seema Kennedy and her fellow Tory MP Simon Hoare.
Labour MPs have expressed anger at the comment and a number of Mrs Kennedy's constituents have contacted the Lancashire Post to raise their concerns about the 'Simples' allegation.
The Lancashire Post has contacted Mrs Kennedy's office for comment.
The Mail on Sunday claims the pair wagered tea at London's famous Ritz hotel if Mrs May made the remark, made famous by Aleksandr Orlov, a CGI fictional anthropomorphic Russian meerkat in the price comparison website Compare the Market's TV adverts.
She used the phrase to describe plans to avoid a no deal Brexit.
Mrs Kennedy is the PM's Parliamentary Private Secretary.
While some have expressed anger at the alleged bet, others described it as 'brilliant'.
Tea the Ritz starts at £55 per person, or £77 with a glass of Champagne.
Writing on Twitter, Sandra Pickering said: "This is disgusting behaviour. It really is a game to them."
However, Lee Petts leapt to Mrs Kennedy's defence, posting: "Doesn't this show that politicians like @SeemaKennedy are more than just a bunch of aloof elites, and that they are actually just ordinary people with a sense of fun like the rest of us?"