5 Things That Could Beat Corbyn at PMQs

Yes another week, another PMQs self-immolation from Westminster’s very own equivalent of a protesting Buddhist monk who sets himself on fire. Or “doing a Corbyn” as they now know it in Saigon.

So dismal was the Labour leader’s interrogation (he actually only managed to use two of his six questions), today we will look at five unlikely things that could best Jeremy Corbyn in a PMQs matchup. Opponents will be ranked by ease of their victories over the Labour leader.

  1. Stephen Hawking

“Ah”, I hear you say, “there is no way that Stephen Hawking could beat Jeremy Corbyn, it takes him ages to synthesise his speech and as such he has to plan out all of his sentences far in advance!”. And? Well, both men have to know what they’re going to say before they get to the Chamber and both have an extremely limited ability to deviate off track. However only one of these men is a theoretical physicist who understands the range of possible outcomes he could have to react to, and that is the clincher. Also, he’s easier on the ear. Stephen Hawking wins this bout comfortably, memorably telling Jeremy Corbyn that he’s met black holes with more warmth than him.

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Corbyn Only Asked Two Questions at PMQs

Corbyn had six questions at PMQs. He only asked two. One was about schools.

Question 1: “Big business evades a lot of national insurance through bogus self employment.” No question.

Question 2: “What is she going to do to fill that Budget black hole?” Question.

Question 3: “It is a grossly unfair system where those in self employment pay some national insurance, employers do not and benefit from it. That is a gross injustice which has to be addressed.” No question.

Question 4: “Cuts to social care and cuts to people with disabilities. That is the agenda of her government and everybody knows it.” No question.

Question 5: “Can she say what she’s doing to help the worst off and poorest in our society rather than continuing cutting local government expenditure, schools expenditure and underfunding social care.” Question, about schools.

Question 6: “What she has to do is address the issues of injustice and inequality in our society, and a government that’s dedicated to widening the gap, not helping those that are hard up, working self-employed to try and make ends meet, and not getting access to any benefits at the same time.” No question.

As May said, “I don’t think the Right Honourable gentleman has quite got the hang of this. He’s supposed to ask a question.” Extraordinary…

PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions?

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Huw Merriman (Bexhill and Battle) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 15 March.

Q2 Stephen Doughty (Cardiff South and Penarth)

Q3 Jeremy Quin (Horsham)

Q4 Mike Weir (Angus)

Q5 Mr Andrew Turner

Q6 Nick Thomas-Symonds (Torfaen)

Q7 Mrs Theresa Villiers (Chipping Barnet)

Q8 Will Quince (Colchester)

Q9 Callum McCaig (Aberdeen South)

Q10 Victoria Atkins (Louth and Horncastle)

Q11 Tim Loughton (East Worthing and Shoreham)

Q12 Geoffrey Clifton-Brown (The Cotswolds)

Q13 Ms Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh (Ochil and South Perthshire)

Q14 Hannah Bardell (Livingston)

Comments in the comments…

PMQs & Budget Double Bill


Jeremy Corbyn kicked PMQs off today by bragging about his party’s impeccable record on gender equality, boasting more women MPs than all other parties in this House combined”. One of which he’d even bonked himself and then promoted to the front bench! Now if that’s not equality then I don’t  know what is.

Of course this being International Women’s Day Mr. Corbyn would not be the only person to pipe up with some cheap gender-points scoring. For the Tories it fell to Victoria Atkins who asked the PM if she would “confirm that, when it comes to female Prime Ministers, it is 2-0 to the Conservatives?”. The surprise here was that this honour wasn’t bestowed upon professional brown-nose Chris Philp, best known for asking the Government probing questions along the lines of  “whether or not the Prime Minister would agree with me that the sun does really shine out of her magnificent backside?”. Continue reading

May’s Weird Shoulder Laugh


Jeremy Corbyn somehow manages to blaze the Surrey council open goal over the bar at PMQs. And Theresa May is loving it…

PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions?

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Mrs Sheryll Murray (South East Cornwall) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 8 March.

Q2 Maggie Throup (Erewash)

Q3 Chris Green (Bolton West)

Q4 Michael Fabricant (Lichfield) What recent assessment she has made of the (a) performance of the economy and (b) adequacy of provision of public services in the Midlands Engine region; and if she will make a statement.

Q5 Tracy Brabin (Batley and Spen)

Q6 Mark Menzies (Fylde)

Q7 Gordon Marsden (Blackpool South)

Q8 Dan Jarvis (Barnsley Central)

Q9 Julie Cooper (Burnley)

Q10 Yasmin Qureshi (Bolton South East)

Q11 Johnny Mercer (Plymouth, Moor View)

Q12 Amanda Milling (Cannock Chase)

Q13 Geraint Davies (Swansea West)

Q14 Deidre Brock (Edinburgh North and Leith)

Q15 Alec Shelbrooke (Elmet and Rothwell)

Comments in the comments…

The Bumble in the Jungle

It’s a boxing cliché that bouts between fighters of different styles make for the most exciting spectacle: think slugger Joe Frazier facing off against a dancing Muhammad Ali, or Iron Mike bobbing and weaving his way through a succession of opponents throwing out straight jabs. Like all bloodsports, politics is subject to the same rule.

Jeremy Corbyn is an out-fighter. Cautious, he throws out a succession of punches to keep his opponent at bay, hoping that eventually enough of them stick for him to be awarded a points-decision. Such a style naturally gelled with David Cameron. Corbyn furiously jabbed; Cameron parried, then dished out a ruthless finishing blow back across the Chamber à la Floyd Mayweather. PMQs finest counter-puncher.

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May’s Weird “Incredible” Joke

What was that?

PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions?

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Andrew Bridgen (North West Leicestershire) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 1 March

Q2 Mr Steve Reed (Croydon North)

Q3 Stephen Metcalfe (South Basildon and East Thurrock)

Q4 Mary Glindon (North Tyneside)

Q5 Roger Mullin (Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath)

Q6 Sarah Olney (Richmond Park)

Q7 Judith Cummins (Bradford South)

Q8 Nigel Adams (Selby and Ainsty)

Q9 Jo Churchill (Bury St Edmunds)

Q10 Alex Cunningham (Stockton North)

Q11 Bob Blackman (Harrow East)

Q12 Kevin Barron (Rother Valley)

Q13 Andrew Bingham (High Peak)

Q14 Glyn Davies (Montgomeryshire)

Q15 Victoria Prentis (Banbury)

Comments in the comments…

DAB PMQ

Readers of this sketch will remember its recurring and heartfelt concern for the sanity of poor Tom Watson. First chronicling his deepening existential despair here, in subsequent months I went on to speculate it was only a matter of time before he would finally lose it and go the “full Bill Murray and turn up to PMQs stark bollock naked”, all in a desperate attempt to break this cycle of Groundhog Day-style self-immolations by the Labour Leader. Today was that day…

He’d almost made it as well, valiantly surviving most of Jeremy Corbyn’s rambling monologues by nodding his head slowly back and forth in scenes eerily reminiscent of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. That lasted right up until Mr. Corbyn finally took the plunge into complete self-parody and used his last question to spit at Theresa May that she needed to “INVEST IN OUR. ENN. AITCH. ESS!”, dementedly hammering his fist on the despatch box like a toddler to punctuate each syllable of “NHS”. At this point something broke in Mr. Watson, and he decided to do what any normal 50 year old politician would in such a situation and throw his arms maniacally in the air, performing an urban youth dance-craze known as a “dab”. Well, at least he didn’t go full Miley Cyrus and twerk on a dwarf in the chamber. Then again, Bercow may have been game…

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Tom Watson’s PMQs Dab

Tom Watson performed a “dab” at the end of PMQs. For readers not familar with the Atlanta hip-hop dance scene, a dab is a dance move popularised by various musicians and sports stars, and copied by naff people trying to be cool. Was it for a bet?

PMQs: Who Is Asking the Questions

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Yasmin Qureshi (Bolton South East)

Q2 Caroline Flint (Don Valley) 

Q3 Andrew Bingham (High Peak) 

Q4 Michael Tomlinson (Mid Dorset and North Poole) 

Q5 Gerald Jones (Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney)

Q6 William Wragg (Hazel Grove)

Q7 Kerry McCarthy (Bristol East)

Q8 Phil Wilson (Sedgefield)

Q9 Dr Julian Lewis (New Forest East)

Q10 Dr Tania Mathias (Twickenham) 

Q11 Chris Davies (Brecon and Radnorshire) 

Q12 Crispin Blunt (Reigate) 

Q13 Neil Parish (Tiverton and Honiton)

Q14 Nic Dakin (Scunthorpe) 

Q15 Gavin Newlands (Paisley and Renfrewshire North)

Comments in the comments…

The Councillor Who Came in from the Cold

Jeremy Corbyn began PMQs today with a damning tirade against patients waiting “up to 13 hours and 52 minutes to be seen” at the Royal Blackburn A&E department: a frustrating delay that is coincidentally is the exact same amount of time it takes to get a meeting with Jeremy Corbyn during a reshuffle. Before he could get into his stride however a cacophony of sedentary chuntering threatened to drown him out completely. In response the Labour leader pressed on with his hectoring but tempered it with aggrieved glances towards the speaker, rather in the manner of a footballer who had been fouled but wanted to signal his displeasure whilst gamely playing on nonetheless. “Speaker! ‘Ave a word!”

As it happens the ref did intervene. Damning the taunts as “a discourtesy to the House of Commons”, the Speaker loftily reminded the Chamber of its duty to allow honorable members to be heard. Quite when notorious cuckold and self-promoting dwarf John Bercow acquired such respect for the dignity of Parliament is anyone’s guess. It must have been some time after his wife appeared on Celebrity Big Brother 8 and then decided to shack up with a gypsy bareknuckle fighter for a Channel 5 documentary. But then again it must also have been subsequent to his recent decision to summarily disregard 400 years of Parliamentary convention concerning the Speaker’s neutrality by attacking the US President, all in order to bask in the reflective glow of his own virtue. Perhaps over the last few days Mr. Bercow has had a Damascene conversion, and we can in future expect him to act like a man aware of  the gravity of his office. Continue reading

PMQs: Who’s Asking The Questions?

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Toby Perkins (Chesterfield) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 8 February

Q2 Johnny Mercer (Plymouth, Moor View)

Q3 Patrick Grady (Glasgow North)

Q4 Scott Mann (North Cornwall)

Q5 Jake Berry (Rossendale and Darwen)

Q6 Mrs Theresa Villiers (Chipping Barnet)

Q7 Iain Stewart (Milton Keynes South)

Q8 James Morris (Halesowen and Rowley Regis)

Q9 Dr Sarah Wollaston (Totnes)

Q10 James Berry (Kingston and Surbiton)

Q11 Mr Graham Brady (Altrincham and Sale West)

Q12 Karl McCartney (Lincoln)

Q13 Julian Sturdy (York Outer)

Q14 Chris Green (Bolton West)

Q15 Gavin Newlands (Paisley and Renfrewshire North)

Comments in the comments…

Lucky Donald Trump is a Calm and Forgiving Man

This week has been a political wet dream for Jeremy Corbyn. Lefties angry? Check. Popular protests? Check. US President to blame? Check. Hasn’t spilt Cup A Soup down himself on the News at Ten or participated in some other colossal screw up in front of the entire nation? Check! The Labour leader and Seumas Milne were no doubt rubbing their hands in glee preparing for today’s session:

“So, Seumas, let me get this straight. All I’ve got to say is Trump is racist; Muslims are our friends; and call on the Prime Minister to publicly shun the most powerful country in the world and our principal ally and trading partner? And I win? But isn’t that insane? Isn’t what I’m asking for literally insane Seumas?”

“It may be insane but that’s beside the point, Comrade! Look, the PM can’t really disagree because it’s hate speech. And the Guardian and BBC will laud it as a “brave” and “principled” intervention, even though really we’re just beta-males that would happily plunge our economy off a cliff to safeguard our own demented worldview. But don’t worry no one will mention that. It’s a win-win situation!”

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May on Corbyn: “He Can Lead a Protest, I’m Leading a Country”

One of Corbyn’s better outings and yet the well-prepared PM brushed him aside with consummate ease. She’s getting more confident…

PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions?

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Peter Heaton-Jones (North Devon) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 1 February

Q2 Stuart Andrew (Pudsey)

Q3 Jonathan Reynolds (Stalybridge and Hyde)

Q4 Mrs Maria Miller (Basingstoke)

Q5 Mrs Theresa Villiers (Chipping Barnet)

Q6 Chris Elmore (Ogmore)

Q7 John Nicolson (East Dunbartonshire)

Q8 Deidre Brock (Edinburgh North and Leith)

Q9 Ruth Cadbury (Brentford and Isleworth)

Q10 Will Quince (Colchester)

Q11 James Duddridge (Rochford and Southend East)

Q12 Alec Shelbrooke (Elmet and Rothwell)

Q13 Mr Stephen Hepburn (Jarrow)

Q14 Mr David Winnick (Walsall North)

Comments in the comments…

First as Tragedy, Then as Farce

Karl Marx famously remarked that history repeats itself, “first as tragedy, and then as farce”. He was right. So right in fact that even his own ideological movement would be subject to the same principle. We had the famines, and the massacres, and the icepicks in the skull of the twentieth century: Marxism as tragedy. And now we have the farce, of which there is of course no finer a proponent than Jeremy Corbyn.

In this spirit, the Labour leader decided to come to PMQs today dressed in the most lurid brown suit known to man. One can only imagine the conversation in Holloway Road market:

“Morning Sir, how can we help you?”

“Oh hello there, I was wondering if you had any tailoring in the shade of human excrement? Preferably oversized too, of the sort a Uzbek goat herder would wear at a funeral? You know, a real statement piece?”

“Why you’re in luck Sir”, the merchant would say, his eyes lighting up, “we have this exquisite lounge suit right here, hewn from the very finest turd-brown Soviet polyester sent straight from Vladivostok. It’s going to set you back a grand though I’m afraid. Currency fluctuations post Brexit, you see sir, they really hit us humble artisans hard”.

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May Hits Corbyn With Killer Sadiq Quotes

Theresa May reads out Sadiq Khan’s quotes spoiling Corbyn’s main attack line on workers’ rights, as reported by Guido this morning. Another happy reader…

Corbyn Buries Northern Ireland Police Officer

At the beginning of PMQs Jeremy Corbyn paid tribute to the police officer who was shot in Northern Ireland this weekend, offering his condolences and telling the Commons he “lost his life”. The police officer in question is still alive, he was shot in the arm and his injuries are not thought to be life threatening.[…] Read the rest

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