Wednesday, October 14, 2015

#pmqsketch "The sphinx and the sphincter."


At first, the jutting chin, angry brow and burly bulk almost banished his boss from public view.
Desperate Dan had taken on human form and was masquerading as deputy leader of the Labour Party.
In his shadow the man with his own masquerading problems, Jeremy Corbyn, still leader after almost five weeks.

High noon it was, but if you’ve seen the movie, it wasn’t; just another 30 minutes before lunch of that one-time drama, Prime Ministers Questions.
And talking of masquerades, David Cameron was making another appearance as Prime Minister; the usual suspects fleshing out the rest of the cast.

PMQ’s has never been the same since Jeremy decided to treat it seriously. 
So it proved today as he once again upset the natural order of things by dragging voters into the chamber.
Not that real people would be allowed into the Commons but a mention of their names was enough to send Tory MPs into a panic.

Regular readers will know that the purpose of PMQs is to allow questions to be asked and not answered.
Jeremy seems to have missed the point and insisted on asking questions from people called Kelly and Mathew, Frances and Emma.

Back in the day, any question from a Labour leader triggered braying of farmyard proportions from the Tory back benches.
But even they know that booing constituents is a no-no leaving Dave having to cope on his own.

The PM, as we know, doesn’t do detail but, sadly, Jeremy doesn’t do insults.
But Dave does do waffle and so he managed to platitude his way through unscathed.

Well almost unscathed until hubris got the better of him and Speaker Bercow got the hump.
There is no love lost between the two and relations in this parliamentary session got off to a fine start when the PM was told to stop rattling on.
“He has finished his answer,” intoned the Speaker, halfway through a Dave sentence. 
The PM grimaced, his minder Chancellor George grimaced twice and Speaker Bercow’s name went into the black book again.

Which brings us back to Dan, better known by his stage name Tom Watson, who flashed a briefly smiling scowl during this interchange.

Tom has been up to his ears in his own odure this week because of involvement in the Leon Brittan affair.
And the scars were still showing when he turned up at PMQs with a chin jutting out far enough for MPs to use it as a bridge to cross the chamber.
That in itself was interesting because had the bridge been used it would have taken the traveller to the equally surly figure of Foreign Secretary, Phillip Hammond.
He had his head in his hands after losing out to Michael Gove in the row over a prison contract for the Saudi’s.
On the Tory side the sphinx, on the Labour side the sphincter.

By now Jeremy had sat down to just about the same level of silence from his side which had marked his arrival.
Another day done, just four years and a bit to go.

Meanwhile, missing from the chamber the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.
Another masquerade later?