Tag Archives: PMQs

Sarah Olney and Wendy Chamberlain challenge Sunak at PMQs

The Lib Dem success at PMQs continues with two of our number challenging Rishi Sunak today.

First up Sarah Olney:

Under the Conservatives, so much of the UK’s potential is going untapped, with anaemic growth, falling living standards and declining international competitiveness. Just this morning, a solar power company developing an innovation from Oxford University said that the UK is the “least attractive” market in which to base its business due to a lack of incentives. That is a home-grown company that could have provided well-paid green jobs—lost to this country thanks to the Government’s lack of an industrial strategy. Why does the Prime Minister think that each week more and more promising businesses choose to leave the UK?

The Prime Minister
The hon. Lady obviously missed the comments by the International Monetary Fund yesterday upgrading our growth performance, she obviously missed the survey of thousands of global chief executives just recently placing the UK as their No. 1 European investment destination, and it sounds like she also missed my trip to Japan last week, when we announced £18 billion of new investment in the UK economy.

Then, on the day when Rishi Sunak declined to order an investigation into Suella Braverman’s conduct over her speeding issue, Wendy Chamberlain asked if he would support her bill ensuring that ministers were properly trained in ethical standards an compliance:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

Davey challenges PM on Dentistry, Carmichael asks about fishing visas

Lib Dems kept up our challenges to the Rishi Sunak at PMQs today. Two got to ask questions. The videos are below, followed by the text from Hansard.

First up was leader Ed Davey in his regular slot.

He asked about the crisis in dentistry:

Ed Davey

Tooth decay is the No. 1 reason that children over the age of four end up in hospital. Regular dental check-ups could prevent it, but too many parents cannot get one for their child. In the East Riding of Yorkshire, there are now almost 3,000 people per NHS dentist. In places such as Herefordshire and Norfolk, fewer than two in five children have been seen by a dentist in the past year. This is a scandal, so will the Prime Minister take up the Liberal Democrat plan to end this crisis and make sure people can get an NHS dentist when they need one?

The Prime Minister

The NHS recently reformed dentistry contracts, which will improve access for patients. Dentistry receives about £3 billion a year, and there were around 500 more dentists delivering care in the NHS last year than in the previous year. I am pleased to say that almost 45% more children saw an NHS dentist last year compared with the year before.

Next up, Alistair Carmichael said that the only boats Suella Braverman had succeeded in stopping was fishing boats, highlighting a recent change which makes it more difficult to get crews and made crews stop working immediately.

Alistair Carmichael

Posted in News | Also tagged and | Leave a comment

A duo of Lib Dems at PMQs highlight GP shortage and medicine issue

Lib Dems are doing very well at Prime Minister’s Questions at the moment. Yesterday, we had two questions to Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab in Rishi Sunak’s absence.

First up, Sarah Olney carried through the theme of the day – GP shortages, highlighting the impact:

From Hansard:

In a shocking article in Surrey Live last year, it was reported that staff at a GP practice in Walton were left in tears and “crumbling under pressure” owing to the increased workload caused by staff shortages. Is that any wonder when there are 850 fewer GPs in the country than there were in 2019? What does the Deputy Prime Minister say to patients left in pain and staff left in tears—including some in his own constituency—as a result of the Government’s failed promise to recruit more GPs?

The Deputy Prime Minister

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | Leave a comment

WATCH: Christine Jardine challenge PM to cut energy bills.

Yesterday at Prime Minister’s Questions, Christine Jardine asked Rishi Sunak to cut the energy bills. She cited a survey she had carried out in her constituency that showed that 80% of respondents were forced to cut their energy use.

The Prime Minister would not give that commitment:

The Liberal Democrats’ shadow Energy Secretary said that there was no role for nuclear power in our future energy industry, which is not something that we need to listen to. As for helping people with their energy bills, as I said earlier, because of the energy price guarantee we are paying, typically, about half a family’s energy bill at the moment, which is worth £1,000. However, the support does not end there: over the next year there will be about £1,000 of direct support for the most vulnerable families in the nation.

I agree with the hon. Lady about energy efficiency. It is important, which is why the Government have allocated more than £6 billion over the current Parliament, and the new schemes that we have just introduced will help hundreds of thousands of households across the country, saving them about £300 on their bills through improvements in their energy efficiency—and the hon. Lady is right: it should be available everywhere, including Scotland.

Afterwards, Christine said:

By refusing to cut energy bills Rishi Sunak is leaving millions of families and pensioners on the brink.

This Conservative Government is happy to heartlessly stand by while millions see their energy bills continue to soar.

We need real action, and that means implementing the Liberal Democrat plans to cut energy bills with a huge windfall tax and tax oil and gas giants bonanza bonuses.

Liberal Democrats have this week set out their plan to help people with energy bills:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 17 Comments

Hat-trick of Lib Dems hammer Tories on broken health pledges

There was another hat-trick of Lib Dems at PMQs yesterday, and this time they tag-teamed to show the Conservatives up for failing to keep key health pledges in their manifesto.

Watch here, with the text exchange after the video.

First up, Ed Davey on the missing 40 hospitals.

It was a pleasure to meet the delegation from Kyiv before Question Time and to confirm that hon. Members across the House are united in our support for Ukraine and its brave heroes. The Conservative manifesto promised 40 new hospitals, but after three years most do not even have planning permission yet. Communities feel betrayed and taken for granted. As ITV showed yesterday, St Helier Hospital in south London is literally crumbling, but there is still no plan to save it, and Hinchingbrooke Hospital in Cambridgeshire has sewage leaking into its wards and a roof that could collapse at any moment. Does the Prime Minister agree that no patients, doctors or nurses should have to put up with those conditions?

The Prime Minister
I am proud that we are investing record sums into the NHS under this Government, including record sums into NHS capital, which are going on not only upgrading almost 100 hospitals and developing 40 large-scale developments, as the right hon. Gentleman knows, but investing in more scanners and more ambulances across the board so that we can deliver vital care to people. I am very pleased that the most recent statistics on urgent emergency care show considerable improvement from the challenges we faced in December, and we are now on a clear path to getting people the treatment they need in the time they need it.

Next up was by-election winner Richard Foord, who quizzed the PM on what was going on in the south west:

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 2 Comments

Another hat-trick of Lib Dems question the Prime Minister

Three Lib Dem MPs questioned Rishi Sunak today. In addition to Ed’s semi-regular slot, Wera Hobhouse and Richard Foord got places in the weekly ballot. Watch each of them here, with the text of the exchanges below the tweets.

First up, Ed asked the PM to do more to classify Russia as a terrorist state:

I associate my party with the comments on the unfolding human tragedy in Turkey and Syria and with the warm words to welcome our ally President Zelensky. He will know that this country and this House totally support Ukraine’s resistance to Vladimir Putin’s illegal invasion, and it is a source of great pride that the British people have stood firm, united and unwavering in supporting the brave heroes of Ukraine.

When President Zelensky addressed this House last year, he asked that we treat Russia as a terrorist state. Since then, the Liberal Democrats have urged the Government to fulfil that request by proscribing the mercenary Wagner Group, which is doing Putin’s bidding and carrying out atrocities against Ukrainians daily. On this symbolic day, will the Prime Minister finally commit to proscribing the Wagner Group, which would be a crucial part of treating Russia as the rogue state it is?

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 1 Comment

WATCH: Wera Hobhouse asks PM to support her bill to tackle workplace sexual harassment

Yesterday, Wera Hobhouse asked the Prime Minister to ensure her bill aimed at tackling workplace sexual harassment has a safe passage through Parliament. The Government has already agreed to support it, but it needs to free up the parliamentary time for it to complete its stages before the end of the session in the Spring.

Watch her here:

In response, the Prime Minister’s words were warm but he didn’t actually give a specific commitment:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

Lib Dem Hat-Trick at PMQs

Rishi Sunak faced questions from 3 Lib Dem MPs today.

First up as Ed Davey, giving voice to so many people’s fears as Cancer waiting times soar:

Next came Sarah Olney, who asked for a ban on evictions over the festive period:

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 1 Comment

Ed Davey challenges Boris Johnson on fraud

Ed Davey used his question to the Prime Minister today to tackle the Prime Minister on the Government’s attitude to fraud:

He demanded that  Boris Johnson correct the record after misleadingly claiming crime has fallen, and apologise to the four million victims of fraud he has written out of the picture.

Seventy-four-year-old Janet had twenty-five thousand pounds stolen by fraudsters.

The money was my mum and dad’s and I just felt I let them down,” she told the BBC.

For Janet and for the 4 million people who fell victim to fraudsters and online scammers last year, fraud is a crime.

Does the Prime Minister understand the hurt he and his Ministers cause fraud victims like Janet, when they write them out of the crime figures, and dismiss fraud as something people don’t experience in their day-to-day lives?

Will the Prime Minister correct the record and apologise?

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | Leave a comment

Wendy Chamberlain smashes it at PMQs with call for PM to resign

Wendy Chamberlain made a brilliant start to PMQs today:

And there has been loads of praise:

https://twitter.com/NairnMcD/status/1483772201866342404?s=20

 

Keir Starmer, buoyed by Tory defector Christian Wakeford sitting behind him, was both serious and funny as he repeatedly blasted the PM’s failures.

But it was David Davis, former Brexit Secretary, who struck what may be a politically fatal blow:

You could hear the gasps of surprise at his savage denouncement. I was reminded of the blow that Geoffrey Howe struck to Margaret Thatcher back in 1990. She didn’t last long after that.

Earlier, Wendy spoke to Nicky Campbell about the PM’s position:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 10 Comments

Ed vs Boris – a load of old Balls

Today has been Helen Morgan’s day. First she was sworn in and then she questioned the Prime Minister about the state of North Shropshire’s ambulance services.

But we could not let this day go by without mentioning Ed’s question to the Prime Minister, which was not without amusing incident.

Poor Ed has been misidentified twice this week. On the New Year’s Day edition of The Weakest LInk (and isn’t Romesh Ranganathan an inspired choice for that?) Jenni Falconer was asked which Ed was the leader of the Liberal Democrats. “Milliband?” she  asked, without much confidence.

Today Speaker Lindsay Hoyle had one of those moments when he introduced Ed at PMQs:

I call Ed Balls—I mean Ed Davey.

Ed replied:

Happy new year, Mr Speaker! I am sure the Prime Minister will want to join me and my Liberal Democrat colleagues in welcoming my hon. Friend the new Member for North Shropshire (Helen Morgan).

People’s already high heating bills are about to jump by more than 50%, with average energy bills rising by nearly £700 a year. Gas price rises will push millions more families into fuel poverty, when we know many are already afraid even to open their heating bills. Does the Prime Minister accept that he could be doing much more than he is to prevent millions of people from going hungry and cold this year while he remains—for now at least—in the warmth and comfort of No. 10?

Boris Johnson of course took the mention of the word balls and ran with it. Pretty disgraceful when you consider that there are millions of vulnerable people wondering how they are going to heat their homes, disabled people wondering how they are going to pay the extra costs to keep their breathing machines going or charge their stairlifts or scooters, all of which use a whole load of electricity. He just doesn’t care.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 4 Comments

Ed Davey challenges Boris Johnson to do more for farmers

Ed Davey took the opportunity at Prime Minister’s Questions today to challenge the Prime Minister to do more to support farmers. He mentioned three places in particular. Feel free to take a wild guess about which parliamentary constituency they are in.*

Farmers across our country are crucial to our nation’s prosperity, as has been shown, once again through the pandemic, but many are now on the brink. Farmers across the country, in villages such as Hodnet, Baschurch and Woodseaves and countless others, are about to see their payments cut by at least 5%, starting this very month. The Prime Minister promised a new support system, rewarding more sustainable farming, but in the meantime he seems prepared to see many British farms go bankrupt. There is an easy solution: stop cutting the current system’s essential payments until the new scheme is fully rolled out. Will the Prime Minister do that, and help our struggling farmers before it is too late?

The Prime Minister’s response will be of very little comfort to farmers who are struggling.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

WATCH: Sarah Green has her first Prime Minister’s Question!

The newest Lib Dem MP, Sarah Green, had her debut PMQ today.

The headquarters of the Epilepsy Society is in her constituency of Chesham and Amersham so it was fitting, during COP26, that she highlighted the need to fund research into the effect of climate change on people with health conditions like Epilepsy.

And Boris Johnson wasn’t even horrible in his response.

I was annoyed that so many MPs talked over Sarah’s questions. It was very disrespectful, particularly on a question that was higher quality than many asked in these sessions.

The text of the exchange is below:

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 1 Comment

Did Boris Johnson just suggest that our Jamie Stone should be fired into space?

Maturity has never really been Boris Johnson’s strong point.

And so it was today when Jamie Stone used a question to the Prime Minister to highlight the positive development  this week which brings space port in North West Scotland a step closer:

As the BBC reports, a major obstacle was cleared:

A Scottish Land Court judge has approved a change of use of an area of croft land near Tongue in Sutherland for the building of the facility.

The land around the rockets hangar and launch pad must remain available to crofters for agricultural use.

The ruling means the first rockets carrying small satellites could launch from Space Hub Sutherland from next year.

So Jamie was joyful about this when he asked the PM if he’d come to the first launch. Boris then replied that Jamie would make a suitable payload :

But did he really mean Jamie?

Hansard, which is usually pretty accurate, says at the time of writing that Boris Johnson replied to Jamie thus:

I thank the hon. Gentleman for his kind invitation. I look forward to taking it up. What we need is a suitable payload to send into space, and I think the hon. Gentleman would do very well.

But if you watch the video, what he actually said was “the Gentleman Opposite” which could refer to Keir Starmer.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 8 Comments

Munira Wilson gets another PMQ – and calls for removal of “draconian” Coronavirus law

Some MPs never get to ask the Prime Minister a question at the most hotly contested parliamentary event of any week.

Munira Wilson has been an MP for just 9 months, and has had two opportunities in the path month to ask a question at PMQs.

This week she asked him to work cross-party to get a consensus on the laws and powers around Coronavirus, calling the current measures “draconian.”

His response was as dismissive as you would expect:

We are making sure that everybody in our society gets all the protections they need. I am aware of the easements in the Care Act 2014 that the hon. Lady refers to. It was necessary to put them in temporarily, and we now need to make sure we give everybody the protection that they need. That is what this Government will do.

And here’s a reminder of Munira’s debut at PMQs last month when she took Boris Johnson to task over his government legislating to break international law.

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 2 Comments

WATCH: Munira Wilson’s short, sharp debut at Prime Minister’s Questions

In case you missed  it, Twickenham’s Lib Dem MP made her debut at Prime Minister’s Questions this week. She was first up and her question was simple and effective:

And she was noticed:

Posted in News and Parliament | Also tagged and | 6 Comments

Two times Jo Swinson was awesome today

Today saw Jo Swinson’s first PMQs as leader against our incompetent and awful Prime Minister. She had intended to ask about a constituent’s mother who was having a hell of a time getting settled status despite living in this country for almost half a century.

Just before the end of PMQs,  Slough MP Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi tackled the Prime Minister about his awful column in which he said horrific things about Muslim women. It’s worth remembering that these comments are not consequence free. Every woman of colour I know, whether she wears a hijab or not, noticed an increase in the racist, islamophobic crap they have to put up with every single day after he wrote that.

Typically, Johnson was incredibly dismissive of the challenge. Then it was Jo’s turn and she absolutely laid into him. 

Unfortunately the embedding feature on Parliament TV isn’t working right now. Here’s a small clip:

Here’s the text.

Jo Swinson (East Dunbartonshire) (LD)

The Prime Minister’s response to the hon. Member for Slough (Mr Dhesi) was appalling. An apology was required, rather than some kind of justification that there is ever any acceptable context for remarks such as the Prime Minister made in that column. He is the Prime Minister of our country. His words carry weight and he has to be more careful with what he says. My constituent Kristin is afraid because her mum, a European citizen, has been struggling to get settled status after 45 years in this country. Our friends, colleagues and neighbours deserve better than his failures and carelessness with language.

The Prime Minister

In the case of his constituent Kristin—

Valerie Vaz (Walsall South) (Lab)
His?

The Prime Minister

Her constituent Kristin—if she has indeed been here for 45 years, and I am sure she has—should be automatically eligible for settled status. Clearly, it is a difficult case, but the answer is for the hon. Member for East Dunbartonshire (Jo Swinson) to bring it to the Home Secretary, and I am sure we can sort it out.

The text alone doesn’t capture how utterly floored Johnson was by Jo’s question. It’s like a surprise to him that he isn’t universally loved.

Later on, during the debate on the Government motion for an election, Jo took apart Johnson’s arguments for an election. A general election, she said, should be held in a responsible manner, after an extension to article 50 had been assured.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 14 Comments

Perfectly pitched – Jo’s first PMQ

It’s quite difficult to find the right words for your first appearance at Prime Minister’s Questions. But when your debut coincides with the departure of the Prime Minister, it’s even tougher.

You don’t want to be too attacking given that the person you are questioning has just been forced out of office, even if she has been responsible for the hostile environment.

What Jo managed with this question was to land blows Boris, who she’s said consistently is not fit to be PM and to give May the opportunity to attack Labour for being the only party not to have had a woman leader.

Posted in News | Also tagged | 12 Comments

Layla: Who’s side is the PM on, Putin or the People’s

Layla Moran had a PMQ today and she rocked it.

She paid a generous tribute to Paddy Ashdown. When I watched it live, it seemed like people were saying “shame” to her. But there’s another story to that.

The main thrust of her question to Theresa May was about it becoming clearer that people wanted a People’s Vote on Brexit while Putin wanted her to get on with Brexit and who’s side was she on.

Watch:

Now, back to the heckling. 

Posted in News | Also tagged | 10 Comments

Wera Hobhouse secures PM’s backing for her call to make upskirting a criminal offence

Today, Wera Hobhouse secured the backing of the Prime Minister for her quest to make the awful practice of up skirting an offence.

Posted in News | Also tagged and | Leave a comment

Is this any way to treat a work colleague? Layla Moran jeered as she questions PM about childcare

Layla Moran became the first of the Lib Dem newbie MPs to question the PM today. She asked a very reasonable question on underfunding of childcare and was met with the usual boorish jeering from Conservative MPs.

Layla took it all in good spirit as she retweeted an article in The Independent which commented on their behaviour.

There are now 208 women in the Commons, more than ever before. Yet instead of focusing on the barracking and bullying of women MPs in this instance, Bercow instead chose to convince his colleagues why Moran was worth listening to.

Imagine if Bercow had jumped to the defence of a male MP. “He has deplorable views but excellent manners so Jacob Rees-Mogg will be heard!”, or, “He actually remembered his briefing today so Boris Johnson please ask your question!”

Posted in News | Also tagged | 11 Comments

ICYMI: Tim Farron at PMQs: When will she put the interests of hard-working British people ahead of an extremist protectionism that absolutely nobody voted for?

Courtesy of Channel 4 News:

A strong question from Tim:

The Prime Minister appears to have made a choice, and that choice is to side with the protectionists and nationalists who have taken over her party, as surely as Momentum has taken over the Labour party. She has chosen a hard Brexit that was never on anybody’s ballot paper and she has chosen to turn her back on British business in the process. As a result, petrol and food retailers have warned of huge price rises at the pumps and on the supermarket shelves in the coming days. When will she put the interests of hard-working British people ahead of an extremist protectionism that absolutely nobody voted for?

May’s answer showed that she thinks she doesn’t have to bother at all about the almost half the country who don’t want us to hurtle towards the disaster of a hard Brexit.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 25 Comments

Tim talks: Talking to refugees in Lesvos and a question to the Prime Minister

The latest “Tim Talks” video below looks at Tim’s visit to Lesvos and his question to the Prime Minister:

Posted in Lib Dem TV | Also tagged , and | 9 Comments

Man standing up and being quiet in top button shocker

What passes for news at the moment is pretty lamentable. Actually, it’s not just at the moment. The tabloid news agenda has its own way of taking our focus off what really matters in this world. Any responsible press would be highlighting the even greater hardship and poverty faced by those households whose tax credits are being slashed by the Government. Also this week trade unions face unfair and illogical restrictions which, if applied to the rest of our democracy, would mean we couldn’t have a legitimate government. Both those changes will make lives really difficult for the least powerful people in our society both at home and at work.

With all that going on, I can’t quite put into words how much I am struggling to give a nano-hoot, let alone two, to caring whether the Leader of the Opposition sings the National Anthem or not. As a liberal, I’m uneasy about enslaving anyone by conformity. Had he been playing Candy Crush (does that still exist?), I might have felt that was inappropriate behaviour for the circumstances, but if he doesn’t want to sing, why force him? Respectful silence is fine by me.  Of course, we do live in a world where Jeremy Corbyn can do no right, so if he had sung, the right wing tabloid press would have had a go at him for singing God save the Queen when he believes in neither a God nor a monarchy. Even less important is whether his top button was tied.  Maybe I should be pleased that a man has his appearance criticised for a change, but it is vacuous.

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 94 Comments

Does Cameron think he’s been in Nick Clegg’s pocket these last five years?

The third last Prime Minister’s Questions of this Parliament was just as ridiculous as we’ve come to expect. I lost patience with it at the moment when David Cameron got away with describing Ed Miliband as despicable.

Now, I have many, many disagreements with the Labour leader. I’m also furious with Ed for countenancing some horrible personal attacks on Nick Clegg, not least that appalling Party Political Broadcast during the European elections last year. However, that was an ad hominem too far. Whatever his policy deficiencies, I think Ed is a decent enough bloke who does not deserve that sort of …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 40 Comments

John Bercow should look to Australia for ideas on how to deal with unruly MPs

John Bercow did try to get an Australian installed as the new Clerk of the Commons in what seemed to me to be quite a sensible move to split the roles of Chief Executive and Procedural expert. He might want to take a leaf out of the book of the Australian Speaker who has developed a habit of ejecting unruly MPs. At one PMQs session at the end of last year, she ejected 18 of them in 73 minutes.

You can watch the video and ensuing drama unfold below.

The reason I say this today is because of the disgraceful tidal wave of heckling which greeted Mike Crockart when he got up at Prime Minister’s Questions. It was so childish and there was simply no reason for it.You can see it from 10 minutes in. It wasn’t particularly unusual behaviour, but it’s high time Bercow moved beyond his sarcastic comments and started chucking people out. It’s the only way they’ll learn. He might want to make sure he throws people out from both sides, because there are plenty who deserve it.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 21 Comments

Yet again Scotland’s political leaders outclass their Westminster counterparts

Prime Minister’s Questions was even worse than usual today. Both Cameron and Miliband jumped into the gutter from the start and neither of them emerged. It was bizarre watching these people who had blocked every single attempt to reform party funding argue about each other’s paymasters. It was a matter of some considerable annoyance that Cameron kept saying how his government had done more to make sure people paid their taxes than the last one. Does anyone seriously think the Tories, left to their own devices, would have done that? Errr, no. That’s all been down to our man in the Treasury, one Danny Alexander. Cameron taking credit for our policy is bad enough. Using our success to cover his own party’s issues is worse.

It was all a bit classier in Scotland, though. Remember a couple of weeks ago how Scotland’s party leaders joked on Twitter about cancelling FMQs and drinking Pimms in Nicola Sturgeon’s office while watching Andy Murray’s semi-final in the Australian Open instead?

Well, they’ve done it again. After a journalist teased Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson about the fundraiser where a mega-rich Tory donor paid £17500 for a shoe-shopping session with Theresa May.

To cut a long story short, a shoe shopping session with all of Scotland’s political leaders is now to be auctioned to raise money for Scottish charity Cash for Kids. Buzzfeed has the story.

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , , and | 12 Comments

Three moments from today’s PMQs

I’ve taken to avoiding Prime Minister’s Questions. However today, I had no choice. At the moment it feels like a particularly angry and vindictive goat has stuffed my sinuses full of bits of cardboard box and is now kicking me in the head. I couldn’t even muster up the energy to get up from the sofa, where I was lying feeling sorry for myself, to find the remote control to switch it off.

The impending election doesn’t seem to have persuaded MPs to behave in a more grown-up fashion. I don’t think anything will change until Speaker John Bercow actually starts throwing people out. It’s nasty, shouty, brawly and hideously unpleasant and it’s all most people see of the work of the Mother of Parliaments. In fact, much goes on that is consensual, professional and pleasant from people of all parties.

Anyway, here are three moments in the half hour which were noteworthy.

Cameron takes credit for Liberal Democrat policy klaxon

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 12 Comments

“This is not a snub. I thought it would be a nice change to get out of the Westminster bubble”: Clegg on his Autumn Statement absence

clegg on levesonNick Clegg has taken my advice.*

Back in July, I offered the Lib Dem leader five unsolicited pieces of advice. Most he’s ridden roughshod over: Vince Cable wasn’t appointed the party’s shadow chancellor for the next election, Jo Swinson wasn’t promoted to the cabinet, and (as far as I know) Nick continues to rule out options other than a full coalition in the event of a hung parliament.

But item number 4 was this:

Posted in News, Parliament and PMQs | Also tagged and | 46 Comments

5 things Nick Clegg could do next

Nick Clegg Q&A 8My last piece of advice to Nick Clegg was to stand down as Lib Dem leader. He didn’t, and it’s pretty clear now that Nick will lead us into the next general election.

Two problems remain, though, and we need to find ways of addressing them. First, morale in the party has dipped since the May elections. Secondly, support for the party has also dipped in the polls. Yes, Lib Dem MPs benefit from the incumbency effect but that only stretches so far – we also need to start winning the air war, or at the very least avoid being ignored. As it stands, what Nick says just isn’t getting a listening. However unfair, it’s a reality we need to deal with.

Here are five suggestions from me for ways in which Nick Clegg could help restore party morale and maybe get himself a hearing from the media and public…

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , , , , , and | 52 Comments
Advert



Recent Comments

  • Tom Harney
    We know that there is a very high correlation between educational outcomes and family poverty. In fact of course it is registration for free school meals which ...
  • Joe Bourke
    New lending falls as interest rates rise. Money supply contracts when loan repayments exceed new loan creation. A rapid reduction in credit creation can lead to...
  • Lorain
    Sandy Smith, It was Men who put Women's SPA down to 60 so they could skivvy and cook for their usually older husbands. Women had 3 jobs ...
  • Sandy Smith
    Young people, in particular, are facing long waits to access mental health specialists. Rolling out mental health checks for everyone, when most are well, will ...
  • Paul Barker
    The Tories continue their slow but steady decline while Sunak,s popularity is now at the levels Johnson & Truss were facing when they were dumped. We shou...