Lonely Hearts Club of One


News flash! A strike by junior doctors is taking place. So naturally, if you want to know what our elected leaders are doing about it, tune into the House of Commons during Prime Minister’s Questions.

What’s that you say? Not a single question or comment about the risk to patients from this unprecedented action? Surely not?!

Talk about being in touch with the public, eh?

Never mind, Jez was boldly holding the government to account anyway. Every MP has at least one old codger, describing himself as a “community activist”, who never fails to turn up at the monthly advice surgery carrying a plastic bag from which he produces a large, thick folder of (the dreaded word) statistics, from which he will read in serious but monotonous tones. David Cameron must feel that his own old codger is now following him even into the chamber. At least Corbyn had left his Asda bag outside.

The Labour “leader” was, however, wearing a nifty new lapel badge declaring, lest there was any doubt, that he “hearts” unions. Usually, when such a campaign is launched, you end up with a whole swathe of sympathetic MPs sporting whatever badge or scarf or hat is being used to generate publicity during the most (only?) watched event in parliament’s calendar. But not today – Jez was the only Labour frontbencher proudly wearing his badge. I wonder why?

The last time there was a doctor’s strike, Corbyn harangued the PM about housing. Today, he decided to harangue the PM about… housing. And yes, I know it’s important and it’s all dreadful and I’m sure young Rosie (whom Corbyn said had written to him about the issue) is having a hard time having to live in the bedroom she grew up in rather than get a place of her own. But my God, the man can bore for Britain! Even his attempts at sounding a bit angry towards the end came across like one of those nutters who used to walk round with signs saying “The End Is Nigh”, not quite believing it himself but getting a bit annoyed about it all the same. Continue reading

PMQs (Rap Version)

Courtesy of the The Private Gentlemen’s Yacht Club

Corbyn Wears Sponsors’ Badge

Guido has always said that Labour MPs should wear the names of their union paymasters while they ask questions in the House, to ensure outside financial interests are always properly declared. Good to see the Labour leader agrees…

PMQs Live: Who Is Asking The Questions Today?

pmqs chat

Continue reading

Comrade Corbyn Unites the Tories


The biggest revelation at today’s PMQs was not that Cameron’s backbenchers are divided over Europe or that Labour backbenchers are phoning Dignitas for leadership advice.

No, it’s that the people of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales are too thick to handle democracy. At least, you could conclude that from what the supremely pompous Angus Robertson, the SNP’s Westminster leader, told the chamber today.

Six weeks is too short a time after the devolved elections in May to hold a European referendum, he declared, so the PM better gang homewards tae think again. Angus is one of those self-made men who worships his creator, so the implications of his request – echoing a letter sent by the three leaders of the regional assemblies earlier today – should have been obvious. American voters (for example) are frequently faced with electing a president, a governor, a senator, a congressman and a multitude of local officials all on the same November day. But Scots’ wee brains would explode if they’ve only got a six-week rest period between ballot papers, apparently.

Continue reading

PMQS: Who’s Asking The Questions Today

pmqs chat

Q1 John Mann (Bassetlaw)

Q2 Marcus Fysh (Yeovil)

Q3 David Warburton (Somerton and Frome)

Q4 Rehman Chishti (Gillingham and Rainham)

Q5 Mr Christopher Chope (Christchurch)

Q6 Anne McLaughlin (Glasgow North East)

Q7 Mr Andrew Turner (Isle of Wight)

Q8 Ruth Smeeth (Stoke-on-Trent North)

Q9 Stella Creasy (Walthamstow)

Q10 Antoinette Sandbach (Eddisbury)

Q11 Julian Knight (Solihull)

Q12 David Rutley (Macclesfield)

Q13 Mark Spencer (Sherwood)

Q14 Johnny Mercer (Plymouth, Moor View)

Q15 Mary Robinson (Cheadle)

Comments in the comments please…

Tim Farron: “Who?”

Following on from the PM’s ribbing a few months ago, Farron is on the receiving end from Tory meanies again. “Mr Tim Farron.” “Who?”

Cameron’s Attack on Corbyn and “A Bunch of Migrants”

Only Corbyn could have missed today’s Google open goal at PMQs. This was Cameron’s punchy three-pronged put down:

“They met with the unions and they gave them flying pickets.

They met with the Argentinians and they gave them the Falkland Islands.

They met with a bunch of migrants in Calais and they said they could all come to Britain.

The only people they never stand up for are the British people and hard-working taxpayers.”

Corbyn missed the chance to hit back, but expect Labour to jump on the outrage bus about that “bunch of migrants” line…

UPDATE: The Guardian was quick to jump on the outrage bus, reporting that his comments were callous and dehumanising. Except when they do it:


PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions Today?

pmqs chat

Q1 Peter Aldous (Waveney)

Q2 Nusrat Ghani (Wealden)

Q3 Charlotte Leslie (Bristol North West)

Q4 James Morris (Halesowen and Rowley Regis)

Q5 Margeret Ferrier (Rutherglen and Hamilton West)

Q6 Nick Thomas-Symonds (Torfaen)

Q7 Sue Hayman (Workington)

Q8 Bob Blackman (Harrow East)

Q9 Caroline Flint (Don Valley)

Q10 Drew Hendry (Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey)

Q11 Martin Vickers (Cleethorpes)

Q12 Judith Cummins (Bradford South)

Q13 Mark Pawsey (Rugby)

Q14 Chris Green (Bolton West)

Q15 Siobhain McDonagh (Mitcham and Morden)

Comments in the comments please…[…]


SKETCH: Waiting Watson and Blissed Out Osborne


As we endured the latest round of this miserably one-sided fight, my mind turned to the two men sitting to the left of their respective leaders.

It’s a decent bet (the double pays 22/1 with Paddy Power) that George Osborne and Tom Watson will be the next leaders of their parties, and will one day be squaring off against each other on these Wednesday lunchtimes, which would at least be more unpredictable.[…]


Corbyn Squirms Through Dodds Falklands Skewering

No one demolishes Corbyn quite like Nigel Dodds. He absolutely nailed him on his Falklands comments at PMQs today.[…]


PMQs: Who’s Asking The Questions Today

pmqs chat

Q1 Gareth Thomas (Harrow West)

Q2 Ms Gisela Stuart (Birmingham, Edgbaston)

Q3 Rishi Sunak (Richmond (Yorks)

Q4 Wes Streeting (Ilford North)

Q5 Edward Argar (Charnwood)

Q6 Dr Alan Whitehead (Southampton, Test)

Q7 Neil Parish (Tiverton and Honiton)

Q8 Karl McCartney (Lincoln)

Q9 Tulip Siddiq (Hampstead and Kilburn)

Q10 Jonathan Edwards (Carmarthen East and Dinefwr)

Q11 Gareth Johnson (Dartford)

Q12 Nadhim Zahawi (Stratford-on-Avon)

Q13 Mr John Baron (Basildon and Billericay)

Q14 Mr David Jones (Clwyd West)

Q15 Bob Blackman (Harrow East)

Comments in the comments please…[…]


PMQs SKETCH: No Doctor in the House


Today was the day the Shadow Chancellor’s influence on his leader made itself known. After Prime Minister’s Questions, MPs, journalists and viewers were scratching their head at Jeremy Corbyn’s failure to mention the junior doctor’s strike even in passing. Such an open goal, you might think, given the government’s difficulties on this one.[…]


PMQs: Who’s Asking The Questions Today

pmqs chat

Q1 Bill Esterson (Sefton Central)

Q2 Andrew Griffiths (Burton)

Q3 Tommy Sheppard (Edinburgh East)

Q4 Barbara Keeley (Worsley and Eccles South)

Q5 Oliver Dowden (Hertsmere)

Q6 Gordon Henderson (Sittingbourne and Sheppey)

Q7 Dr Tania Mathias (Twickenham) 

Q8 Dr Phillip Lee (Bracknell) 

Q9 Seema Kennedy (South Ribble) 

Q10 Dan Jarvis (Barnsley Central) 

Q11 Paul Blomfield (Sheffield Central)

Q12 Andrew Bridgen (North West Leicestershire) 

Q13 James Cartlidge (South Suffolk) 

Q14 Mrs Sharon Hodgson (Washington and Sunderland West) 

Comments in the comments please…[…]


Ask Jez: Why Could Labour Be Fined Up To £500,000?

Lab Comms

Jeremy Corbyn has revolutionised PMQs by outsourcing his questions to members of the public. Voters are able to send in their question by supplying their email address and filling out an online form with their suggestions. Guido would like to remind everyone to use this form responsibly…

Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear Labour have complied with the regulations laid out by the Information Commissioners Office’s on online communications, with the ICO stipulating that there must be an opt-out option for receiving future e-mail communications from the party.[…]


PMQs SKETCH: Full Fathom Five Labour’s Leader Lies


Be not afeard; the House is full of noises. Given the recent floods, the Prime Minister avoided quoting The Tempest as the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death was expropriated to ridicule the Shadow Cabinet reshuffle omnishambles: “It looked like this reshuffle could go into its Twelth Night.” “A comedy of errors!” “Much ado about nothing!” “Love’s Labour’s Lost!”.[…]


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Quote of the Day

Peter Bone has some advice for the Commons:

“Isn’t it time we stopped banging on about Europe?”

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