Prime Minister’s Questions
AT THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, WESTMINSTER
Outside of the main May v Corbyn exchange
Prior to Jeremy Corbyn standing up Catherine McKinnell (Lab Newcastle North) opened raising the issue of apprentices affected by the collapse of Carillion & Simon Hoare (Con North Dorset) raised the recent strong manufacturing & productivity figures.
After the main exchange SNP leader Ian Blackwood promoted the Scottish Government’s economic analysis on Brexit, May hit back pointing GDP figures were lower in Scotland than elsewhere. Desmond Swayne (Con New Forest West) encouraged the PM to build on Iceland’s decision to go plastic free. Zac Goldsmith (Con Richmond Park) pushed for a judicial review of the John Warboys case.
May v Corbyn
Today’s PMQ’s was one of Jeremy Corbyn’s worst. Part of his problem may be he had nowhere to go. Normally he likes to ignore what everyone else is talking about, today he had no choice but to go on the Carillion collapse which could have made it easier for Theresa May to prepare. He was schooled by Theresa May on the realities of Government. During the exchange May explained to him what a profit warning was, how Government contracts work, she was ready with the facts on the Crown Representative to Carillion procedure which Corbyn wrongly claimed had been left vacant with nobody taking responsibility. She even had time to put Emily Thornberry’s heckling in her place by stating she is aware of Thronberry recently praising Carillion, which was later proved correct.
At one point Corbyn embarrassingly forgot to even ask a questions which May pointed out to the cheers of the Tory benches. Corbyn also seemed to be of the view the Government is, or if not should be, responsible for the Management of a private companies. May responded by saying they were a customer of Carillion, not responsible for their management, yet again explaining reality. Corbyn finished with a rant about the private sector in general, exposing his statist authoritarian ideology. May’s final line in the exchange was to point out most people work in a private sector Labour dislike, quoting Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell saying business are ‘The Enemy.’ She ended by claiming this Labour Party put “politics before people”
Corbyn struck the wrong tone, trying to make the awarding of contracts political when a combination of the last Labour Government, the Welsh Labour run Government and Labour run local authorities had done so. He also perhaps more importantly moving forward demonstrated a lack of basic knowledge of how things work as and exposed his own statist ideology. Surprisingly he did not make so much of the difficulties people could face on the ground either and it was May who came across as more empathetic, as well as Prime Ministerial and on top of the facts. She also drew clear lines between the Government’s role and where it stops, which for Corbyn seems to be nowhere. Her final comment that Corbyn had put ‘Politics before people’ totally summed up Corbyn’s miserable afternoon. Today he could have been forgiven for a quieter tone he has used in the past, bizarrely he went for cheap politics first. It failed badly.
MOON OF LIBERTY VERDICT
Theresa May 4 Jeremy Corbyn 0
A PM on top of the facts, looking Prime Ministerial and showing a full understanding of the realities, while in contrast a Leader of the Opposition lacking knowledge of basic principals, May’s most comfortable win since she became PM.