Wednesday 8 October 2008

Thoughts on PMQs...

For the first time in a long time Gordon just about came out on top today, albeit sparring with an opposition leader who had tied his hands behind his back.

Dave had pledged support for Government measures through the crisis and so was unable to really strike at Brown.

In fact both men had pledged to play nicely today saying the crisis outweighed partisan point scoring – of course neither could help themselves in the end.

It started off with both trying their hardest to out “have-the-interest-of-the-nation-at-heart” each other.

Dave’s initial questions were tame – affirming the need to stabilize the banking system. Brown mocked him – thanking him for the opportunity to explain how Labour was saving the day.

Every question Dave asked about whether the Government was doing its best to sort out the nation's problems, or if the cabinet would consider Conservative proposals, were met with heckles from the Labour ranks.

The Tories on the other hand seemed to be positively muzzled – as if a memo had gone round telling everyone to be deadly serious. Instead opposition MPs settled for mature headshaking at the childish banter on the opposite benches.

With his last question Dave couldn’t help but try and push the PM and asked him to give a guarantee to tax-payers that irresponsible bankers wouldn’t get a big bonus.

It was a bizarre question that didn’t quite fit with the Tory leader’s dialogue – particularly as he had defended banks in an earlier remark – and it left him open.

Brown hit back by smugly reading out a quote that Cameron had made on television – “what you won’t hear from me this week,” Dave had said, “is the sort of easy, cheap lines beating up the markets.”

Labour MPs finally had something to cheer about at PMQs. Tories shook their heads like older sisters looking at the tomfoolery of their kid brother.

After today’s performance Dave will be itching to go back on the offensive and Labour MPs will be scrambling to build on what they hope is the foundation of a come-back.

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