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Thursday, 3 June 2010

The New Politics?

Yesterday brought Young Dave’s first Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs), which, as I was on a day out – in London, as it happened – had to be viewed retrospectively. This meant that much of my information was bound to come second hand, and possibly influenced by post event commentary.

It is into this last category that pundits and bloggers attempt to make their mark, but, sad to say, as the House of Commons record is available online, the opportunity for slipping through the odd porkie is very slender. Nevertheless, blinded by the light shining out of, well, somewhere, Iain Dale, a compliant and reliable conduit for Tory propaganda, tried his best.

Cameron’s debut, he told, was “assured”. He was “in command of his office”. And he “answered the questions put to him”. Er, no he didn’t.

Living in the north west, I take some interest in news from around the region. And that region was represented at yesterday’s PMQs by Labour MP Jim Dobbin, who represents Heywood and Middleton. His question was whether Cameron could confirm that four school building projects in that constituency would be seen through to completion.

Young Dave replied that the schools budget had been protected, that there was a commitment to building new schools, and managed not to answer the question that Dobbin had put to him. No commitment was given in respect of all, or indeed any, of the four projects mentioned.

The exchange is, as ever, recorded in Hansard, and can be viewed HERE (as Dale likes to put it). Specifically, it is recorded as Q4 [000429]. I know that Dale is a Tory supporter, but one might have expected better from someone who parades his ability to take an even handed view.

Or not.

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