Boxgate Goes Box Office at PMQs

Ed’s leaflet woes and Guido’s important boxgate scoop got the full box office treatment at PMQs today:

PM: “We’re all starting to think about leaflets, I’ve got a little question. Apparently you can go round to his office and he stands on his soapbox to make him look a little bit taller. Let’s ask, how many people are going to put the leader of the opposition on their leaflets?”

Well it looks like David Cameron got his “daily dose” of Guido yesterday.

UPDATE: In Vine form:

Miliband: A Caricature of Incompetent Miserablism

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After Peter Tapsell’s intervention in PMQs, there was no obvious need to proceed with the Opposition Day move to ban MPs having paid directorships or consultancies.

This is the Labour leadership’s move to get some votes out of the Rifkind/Straw sting.

Tapsell rose from his seat in all his opulence and warned that such a move would limit membership of the Commons to “inheritors of large fortunes, or those with rich spouses, or obsessive crackpots, or those” (to general delight) who are unemployable anywhere else.”

Hard to choose one of those categories to put Miliband into. He had a mansion tax inheritance, has a six-figure wife, is a political obsessive, a policy crackpot, and is employable by no one other than the Labour party. Harvard, maybe? He assumes so. Time will tell.

Cameron pointed out that the Miliband Motion allowed MPs still to have second jobs. And that the cap on earnings had been mooted then withdrawn. And that Labour MPs could still be wholly sponsored by a trade union under this proposal but the director of a family business would be banned.

Miliband offered across the despatch box to put a manuscript amendment to ban trade union sponsorship. Would the prime minister then support the Motion?

He was told not to be silly.

What a caricature of incompetent miserablism Miliband has become. Prohibit it or punish it, his first instincts.

He makes William Hague’s leadership of the opposition look Churchillian.

If a serious opposition leader really wanted to “restore the reputation of the House” as Miliband twice said he wanted to do – he would have said none of the things Miliband said. Nor would he have found himself chopping his position about as his colleagues made representations. And he certainly wouldn’t be wonking about offering manuscript amendments from the despatch box.

His friends and supporters both testify to his intelligence and decency. But the facts speak for themselves. He got a second class degree and he talks Manichean drivel about politics.

For instance: “The Tory party bought and sold by the hedge funds!”

What sad and sorry rubbish.

If it were true we’d have a single, low, flat tax on income, time-limited welfare, and full deductibility for domestic staff.

It was of the few times you might wish the noodle was telling the truth.

PMQs LIVE: Who is Asking the Questions Today

pmqs

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 John Woodcock (Barrow and Furness)

Q2 Naomi Long (Belfast East) 

Q3 Andrew Stephenson (Pendle) 

Q4 Sir Richard Ottaway (Croydon South) 

Q5 David Mowat (Warrington South) 

Q6 Ben Gummer (Ipswich)

Q7 Gavin Shuker (Luton South)

Q8 Phil Wilson (Sedgefield) 

Q9 Mr George Howarth (Knowsley) 

Q10 Glyn Davies (Montgomeryshire) 

Q11 John Cryer (Leyton and Wanstead)

Q12 Clive Efford (Eltham) 

Q13 Mr John Leech (Manchester, Withington)

Q14 Sir Tony Baldry (Banbury) 

Comments in the comments please…

SW1 Snap Verdict: Miliband Misses Massive Open Goal

Five more of these sessions to go…

PMQs LIVE: Who Is Asking the Questions Today

pmqs

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Mr Tim Yeo 

Q2 Cathy Jamieson (Kilmarnock and Loudoun)

Q3 Paul Blomfield (Sheffield Central) 

Q4 Maria Miller (Basingstoke) 

Q5 Mr Peter Lilley (Hitchin and Harpenden)

Q6 Glyn Davies (Montgomeryshire)

Q7 Andrew Jones (Harrogate and Knaresborough) 

Q8 Richard Drax (South Dorset) 

Q9 Mrs Sharon Hodgson (Washington and Sunderland West) 

Q10 Karen Lumley (Redditch) 

Q11 John McDonnell (Hayes and Harlington) 

Q12 Chi Onwurah (Newcastle upon Tyne Central) 

Q13 Jason McCartney (Colne Valley) 

Q14 Phil Wilson (Sedgefield) 

Q15 Mr Graham Allen (Nottingham North)

Comments in the comment please…

PMQs: Miliband’s Sixth Sense

The Sketch Team spent the morning drowning kittens to train for PMQs. Piteous sights and sounds we beheld, quite wither-wringing. On a positive note, we got through the carnage of Ed Miliband’s performance without a tear.

How the Tory dogs leapt on him. Tore at him. The noise (so chamber reporters said) has never been noisier. Cameron was on his best form for years and made a very decent joke.

“Bill someone,” Ed Balls had said last night on Newsnight, when asked to name a Labour business backer. “Bill,” Balls said. Bill who? It turned out to be Bill the chairman of Labour’s Small Business Task Force. Balls had just been having dinner with him, not an hour before the interview. Small business significance in the Labour cosmology can be determined by the fact that his name had escaped the shadow chancellor. Bill, Bill someone.

Cameron was laughing at him (and to be fair Balls was laughing back), “Bill someone! It’s not a person, it’s Labour’s policy!”

Several Labour MPs committed hari-kiri on the spot.

Continue reading

WATCH: Cameron’s ‘Bill Somebody’ PMQs Gag

Cameron delivered his best gag for ages at PMQs today:

“The day after his Shadow Chancellor was asked on the television could he think of one single business leader, do you know what he said, he said ‘Bill somebody’. Mr Speaker, ‘Bill somebody’ is not a person, ‘Bill somebody’ is Labour’s policy!”

Only six more to go…

PMQs LIVE: Who Is Asking the Questions Today

pmqs

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Phil Wilson (Sedgefield)

Q2 Susan Elan Jones (Clwyd South) 

Q3 Stuart Andrew (Pudsey) 

Q4 Mr Adrian Sanders (Torbay)

Q5 Dan Jarvis (Barnsley Central) 

Q6 Joan Walley (Stoke-on-Trent North) 

Q7 Margot James (Stourbridge) 

Q8 Charlie Elphicke (Dover) 

Q9 Mr Graham Stuart (Beverley and Holderness) 

Q10 Tom Blenkinsop (Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland) 

Q11 Mr David Anderson (Blaydon) 

Q12 Mike Freer (Finchley and Golders Green) 

Q13 Jesse Norman (Hereford and South Herefordshire)

Q14 Anne Marie Morris (Newton Abbot) 

Q15 Mark Durkan (Foyle) 

Comments in the comments please…

PMQs: Ed’s Weapon Backfires

Is it a crime to provoke a hate crime?

Will Ed Miliband find himself in the dock for stirring up hatred against himself?

Labour feelings about their leader have traversed a spectrum starting with loyal embarrassment, moving through incredulity, to […]

+ READ MORE +

PMQs LIVE: Who is Asking the Questions Today

pmqs

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Mr Frank Field (Birkenhead)

Q2 Lilian Greenwood (Nottingham South)

Q3 Lyn Brown (West Ham) 

Q4 Sandra Osborne (Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock) 

Q5 Mr Dennis Skinner (Bolsover) 

Q6 Mr Tim Yeo (South Suffolk) 

Q7 

[…]

+ READ MORE +

PMQs: Another Strategic Failure for the Brainiac Leading Labour

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His core vote strategy rests on a Marxist idea that the country is groaning under a cabal of Etonian cannibals. That we’re re-running the Great Depression. That We’ve Never Had It So Bad. That the poor will be soon paying […]

+ READ MORE +

VICTORY: Mills Appointment Officially Dead

Statement after PMQs is apparently not for Bercow to grovel, despite his […]

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Charles Clarke says Cameron is the most successful PM for over a century…

“Under Margaret Thatcher the Conservatives gained 99 seats. They lost 211 under John Major, gained one under William Hague, quickly and wisely got rid of Ian Duncan-Smith, gained 32 under Michael Howard and have so far gained 133 under David Cameron who, to the great surprise of many (including senior Conservatives), has turned out to be the most electorally successful Tory leader since 1900.”

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