Wednesday 15 October 2008

Harman and Hague

Harriet's response had gone on far too long by anyone's standards, even the eyes of those on the benches behind were starting to glaze.

As it went on a low grumbling began that slowly increased in volume until someone finally broke and screamed "shut up!"

It was most unparliamentary, but necessary.

PMQs without the PM can be a let down at the best of times but with Ms Harman it's particularly heavy going.

Hague performed reasonably well but the whole thing was too sluggish to call a winner.

All of the subject matter was financial except for one bizarre question when a Labour MP asked Harriet to welcome a meeting of the European Space Committee.

It set her up for a lame joke about a summit boldly going where no summit had previously gone.

Harriet didn't mess up staying on message though - that the crisis is global and didn't grow from Number 10.

But there was light relief when she responded to a question on interest rates saying; "I don't really know what he's talking about in terms of interest rates."

A similarly ambiguous comment saw her pronouncing that the treasury did not "need any advice" from the likes of her.

We knew what she meant, but it sounded stupid, and that's what matters in the circus.

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