"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen."

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

PMQs: Verdict + Videos

Another win for Cameron this week - it's too easy and Miliband is no match.

Harriet Baldwin, Con, West Worcestershire had the first question and gave Cameron a chance to blow the coalition trumpet about economic growth figures.

Miliband's questions all related to the plans for Housing Benefit  & Welfare Reform but he only tied himself up in knots with a little help from Cameron, an old Labour internal memo and the email leaked to the Times this morning in which Miliband was advised on how to handle PMQs*.  Miliband tried to change tack by drawing attention to unhappy Libdems - Hughes and Clegg in particular ('Glum and Glummer', 'back on the fags').  Once again it was very noisy: the Labour benches weren't comfortable at all and Speaker Bercow intervened: "Members must remain , if not serene, at any rate calm at all times".
* "It's important to have a cheer-line that goes down well in the Chamber."
"You've got to have something that can be clipped easily by the broadcasters."
"It's important to get to your feet looking as though you're seizing on something new."

The EU won't go away, no matter how often Cameron tries to deflect questions.  It was raised again by backbenchers  and it was pointed out that Labour MEPs voted to increase the EU budget this week. One other noteworthy jab was at Angus Robertson, the SNP Westminster Leader, when Cameron ridiculed the notion of an independent Scotland  ("I have to say to the honourable gentleman that if we had an independent Scotland you wouldn't be flying planes, you'd be flying by the seat of your pants.")

Did your MP ask a question?

Christopher Pincher, Con, Tamworth; David Blunkett, Lab, Sheffield Brightside & Hillsborough;  Tessa Munt, LibDem, Wells;  Eric Illsley, Ind, Barnsley Central;  Andrew Turner, Con, Isle of Wight;  Kate Hoey, Lab, Vauxhall;  Andrew Bingham, Con, High Peak;  Angus Robertson, SNP, Moray, Westminster Leader;  Julian Huppert, LibDem, Cambridge;  Paul Goggins, Lab, Wythenshawe & Sale East;  David Rutley Con, Macclesfield;  Luciana Berger, Lab Co-op, Liverpool Wavertree;   Rehman Chishti, Con, Gillingham & Rainham;  Siobhain McDonagh, Lab, Mitchem & Morden;  Mark Pawsey, Con, Rugby;  Emma Reynolds, Lab, Wolverhampton North East;   Neil Carmichael, Con, Stroud; Tom Harris, Lab, Glasgow South;  Sajid  Javid, Con, Bromsgrove;  Robert Flello, Lab, Stoke-on-Trent South;   Alun Cairns, Con, Vale of Glamorgan;  Sharon Hodgson, Lab, Washington & Sunderland West;  Bob Russell, LibDem, Colchester;

Topics raised:
A new Ocado store & 2,000 new jobs in Tamworth;  anomalies raised by devolved budgets; winter deaths of elderly people; transfer of Yorkshire Forward funds to Local Enterprise Partnerships; the need of a Treaty change to take account of proposed EU economic sanctions; the EU budget; councils sharing services to drive down costs;  the closure of RAF Lossiemouth and loss of jobs;  implementation of Labour's intrusive monitoring & surveillance;  the end of Child Trust Funds;  future of BAE in Macclesfield; tax relief on video game development;  Thames Estuary airport;  Sri Lanka war crimes tribunal;  planning for gypsy/traveller sites; cuts to school funding in Wolverhampton;  FE colleges in Stroud;  Conservative support for Labour spending plans;  S&P's credit upgrade of UK;  schools in Stoke-on-Trent;  support for the private sector; bank taxation & child trust funds;  housing benefits cuts & homeless children.

Followed by an Urgent Question from Bill Cash, Con, Stone & Chairman of the European Scrutiny Committee:  What negotiating position does the government intend to adopt regarding economic governance and the Stability & Growth Pact in the EU?

The government's response was given by Financial Secretary, Mark Hoban and he essentially said that the govt supported the aims of the EU regarding sanctions against euro-zone members and that the proposals would not affect Britain, that Britain would be exempted.  (This despite van Rompuy stating yesterday that the changes would initially apply to euro-zone states and then be extended EU-wide).

Cash was unimpressed.

Videos of PMQs to follow as and when they become available.

Cameron - Robertson:

(This video by SNP supporter)

Cameron - Miliband:

Part 1
Part 2
Thanks to Liar Politicians


  1. I have four boys, and when they were small, they learned to play board games with myself and my wife. Now, we could of course have crushed them into the floor, danced around their tearful faces when removing their last draught, or making them pay £2000 for landing on Mayfair with a whoop of derision.

    We didn't of course, but then Cameron isn't Milly's Dad, is he? Milliband is a big boyand dreadfully out of his depth.


  2. Agreed. Cameron will have to be careful or he'll be accused of kicking a man when he's down. Miliband is easy meat for him.


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