Screenshot of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev kissing East German leader Erich Honecker

Members in Parliament: the ups and downs of political porn

Thatcher and May’s fanfic Song of Iron and Wheat. “Mandelborne”. A whipped cream fight with Ed Balls (oo-er). How Westminster fantasy horniness rose to the occasion... then flopped.

According to rule 34, If it exists, there’s porn of it.”

There is no reason why British politics should be an exception. Even though it never made it into the mainstream, for perhaps obvious reasons (Members’ members anyone?), Westminster-based filth has been hiding in dark online corners for over a decade.

For a while, the dirtypoliticsconfessions Tumblr was the most visible aspect of the scene. People could send in the anonymous fantasies they had about MPs – former and current, famous and obscure – and it would be posted on their behalf. 

Sometimes the confessions were quite sweet: I’m glad I can now say I’ve wanted to have sex with Jeremy Corbyn for years and people finally know who he is.” Most of the time they were very graphic: I’d have a whipped cream fight with Ed Balls. Have him lick it off my tits, navel and thighs then have some very messy and sticky sex. We’ll then shower together, our wet, soapy bodies entwined, then he takes me there and then and shows me who’s boss.”

Still, these were only the tip of the horny iceberg. Lolitics”, as the trend became known, took shape in 2010. Split between LiveJournal, Tumblr and Archive Of Our Own, the community thrived, writing salacious fanfiction about British politicians, exchanging memes and generally shitposting about current affairs.

Its catalyst? The Cameron-Clegg coalition government formed that same year. According to Maarten, a former lolitician, the 2010 outbreak of horny was a perfect storm of people who had spent their teens in fandom getting older and thus able to vote and really taking notice of politics for the first time, both actually politics-wise with the potential of things being shaken up, and horny-wise with the influx of hotter politicians – like Cleggmania but more people than just Clegg. The media also definitely played a part with all the innuendo, which then had the politicians themselves playing into the innuendo, which just fuelled everyone’s horniness even more.”

He has a point. To pick one random example, here’s an extract from a piece political journalist Michael White wrote for The Guardian in 2010: It has been more than seven months since Dave and Nick announced their civil partnership one sunny afternoon in the rose garden at No 10. The young couple themselves are still very much in love…”

Of course, the lolitics fandom took it several steps further. While the Clegg/​Cameron (“Clameron”) pairing was by far the most popular, fic started popping up about everyone and anyone involved in the coalition era; George Osborne and Danny Alexander (“Xanderborne”) fucked, Michael Gove and Ed Balls fucked (“GoveBalls”), Peter Mandelson and George Osborne fucked (“Mandelborne”). And so on. 

In fic as in life, it was never clear where the line between love and lust was drawn. Even by the end of 2010, it felt like a lot of the people posting sincerely had deeper feelings for the politicians they discussed. They also started widening their horizons, with New Labour politicians joining the horny canon. One user especially fond of pre-2010 politicians is Elizabeth, but you can call her Cones (after John Major’s Cones Hotline policy).

According to Cones, being a young person unhealthily lusting over politicians isn’t all that weird.

People, no matter how much judgement – either from their peers or in the eyes of God – is wrought upon them, love the thrill of power, and how wrong yet alluring it feels to crave it,” she says. That, and the extremely emotional, high stakes tensions inherent in politics, oftentimes twinned with lifelong personal rivalries and questionable loyalties and so on and so forth. 

None of this means that anyone involved can’t compartmentalise their raging id and have actual, normal political opinions, of course,” she adds. That was actually the mantra drummed into you in these spaces: have your fun, but keep it separate from reality’.”

It’s fair to say that loliticians were always self-conscious. As one fairly popular post put it: Lolitics is great. I love thirsting over old men and applauding my acquaintances while they thirst over different old men.”

Still, Cones’ last point goes some way towards explaining why, these days, the internet is no longer so hot and heavy for British politicians. 

After the fiery years of Clameron and the sweet and innocent months of the Milifandom, things started going downhill. The Theresa May premiership still had its fair share of horniness – fic of her and Corbyn getting it on in Brussels; a memorable fic of her and Thatcher called A Song Of Iron and Wheat; some absolute filth on Philip Hammond – but it’d all died by the time Johnson came in.

The lolitics community of Tumblr has now largely disappeared; Archive Of Our Own has very little to offer on recent British politics, and if there are other pockets of fic and fandom anywhere, they are hard to find. It is odd: while Boris isn’t an obvious target of lust for horny youths, figures like Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak certainly look like men made for cutesy photo montages.

So, what happened? According to former lolitics devotees, the problems are mostly structural. 

I don’t think the atmosphere is right to breed horniness when there’s not a sense of pivotal change in the air,” Maarten says. While Brexit will change Britain forever, the debates around it have been more unpleasant than electrifying. Equally, given how young most loliticians tend to be, they probably wish it wasn’t happening at all.

Cones, on the other hand, believes it has to do with the shifting nature of online platforms. Most people involved in lolitics also had a genuine interest in politics – some of them were even party members, and involved in more traditional campaigning. Sites like LiveJournal and Tumblr allowed them to go about their horny business in private while being able to function as a community. But other platforms don’t quite work that way.

Aided by Twitter, completely separate fandom spaces have almost melted away, and everyone sees everything, for better or worse,” she explains. Nothing is secret, and for most people – who aren’t me – something as embarrassing as being horny for politicians entails a little secrecy.”

Because political fandom was always fairly self-aware, living with the constant threat of being discovered by the very people being written about removed much of the fun. One option could be to go completely private, but that would also defeat the point – all fandoms are fundamentally communities, and sharing smut will always be more appealing than writing it for yourself.

Similarly, the sharing of political memes has become more widespread in recent years, and so it can be hard to tell the difference between innocent hobbyists and fully-fledged political horndogs. And while the open spaces of Twitter can be a fun way to get attention – for those who want it – more committed loliticians simply wanted to stay hidden in the shadows.

Whereas before people in lolitics were very, very, very careful to hide their horny trash, now you have people shitposting on Twitter who jump for joy because an MP followed them,” Cones says. It’s not very conducive to illicit horn. If an MP followed me I would probably soft block them – unless they want to see tweets about pegging Ramsay MacDonald.”

Daydreaming about railing the first ever Labour Prime Minister with a strap-on may not be for everyone, but at least it is more entertaining than whatever is going on right now. Perhaps we should all be learning from lolitics; in times of political despair, only good old fashioned horn can save us.


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