"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, 19 January 2011

PMQs: Summary + Videos


It was slightly livelier this week. Miliband gave a mixed bag performance - sometimes assertive but sometimes wheedling and weak as milk-sop. Cameron seemed exasperated and more animated than last week. Content might have been lacking but he left his backbenchers shouting for more.  They're easily pleased these days.

Miliband split his questions into two groups of three: employment and the NHS. He led on the increase in employment and the closure of the government's back to work programme. Cameron responded that long-term structural youth unemployment was concerning [leading to a later question about the National Youth Service - a Labour initiative continued by the coalition] but 'overall the claimant count is down, vacancies are up, and growth has been revised upwards.'

Miliband asked how NHS reforms will affect waiting times and accused Cameron of arrogance by going against the advice of doctors and nurses and reeled off another list of broken promises.  By return, Cameron  taunted him about "the same old feeble pre-scripted lines that must sound fantastic in the bathroom mirror."  Still not much to write home about this week.  Miliband may as well not be there for all the good it does.

Did Your MP Speak?
Andrew George, LibDem, St Ives; Jane Ellison, Con, Battersea; Chris Bryant, Lab, Rhondda; Julian Brazier, Con, Canterbury; David Simpson, DUP, Upper Bann; Jake Berry, Con, Rossendale & Darwen; Bob Russell, LibDem, Colchester; Tony Lloyd, Lab, Manchester Central; Sir Peter Tapsell, Con, Louth & Horncastle; Helen Goodman, Lab, Bishop Auckland; Anne Main, Con, St Albans; Grahame M Morris, Lab, Easington; Damian Collins, Con, Folkestone & Hythe; Lindsay Roy, Lab, Glenrothes; Louise Bagshaw, Con, Corby; Tom Clark, Lab, Coatbridge, Chryston & Bellshill; Lee Scott, Con, Ilford North; Naomi Long, Alliance, Belfast East; Tony Baldry, Con, Banbury; Nick Smith, Lab, Blaenau Gwent; Gordon Birtwhistle, LibDem, Burnley; Tom Blenkinsop, Lab, Middlesborough South & East Cleveland; John Whittingdale, Con, Maldon; Clive Efford, Lab, Eltham.

Topics raised:
Privatisation/modernisation of the NHS; education in Battersea; leaked figures showing extent of police cuts in South Wales; reform of social security system; fuel smuggling/rural rebate for petrol in N.Ireland; Labour's record on education; abolition of DLA as it has affected one particular Colchester constituent; NHS waiting lists in inner cities & health inequalities; seeking confirmation that no more powers will be handed to the EU; bureacracy in the NHS; shake-up of Network Rail; private donations to Tory Party & NHS reforms; blocking of emails between Blair & Bush at the Chilcot Inquiry; cuts to EMA; top-down housing policy; the situation in Sudan & humanitarian aid; NHS/PCTs - promotion for failure; security in N.Ireland; filibustering in the Lords re AV referendum debate; fuel duty in Wales; lack of local input into hospital closures; credit unions and loan sharks; planning for on-shore wind farms and the Localism Bill; proscription of Pakistani Taliban vis-a-vis Hizb'ut Tahrir.

Videos to follow. Meanwhile, have a laugh at this:


H/t: LiarPoliticians

Cameron - Bryant re Policing in Wales


Cameron - Miliband

MegaSpliffster

In full:


Hansard

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