For those who may have forgotten how we came to have Theresa May as Prime Minister, and how she eventually became Tory leader without having to face a final vote, this was ultimately down to Andrea Leadsom, the MP who was considered too wacko to be let loose on 10 Downing Street. That’s as in more wacko than Theresa May.
Now, Ms Leadsom has been made Leader of the House, and in this post she has been terminally useless, unable to even act on her own advice. This has served her poorly when confronted with Commons speaker John Bercow, who has outplayed and outwitted her at every turn, in the latter case because he has wits to deploy, and she doesn’t.
Consider what the Independent reported last week - that is, four days before Speaker Bercow told the Commons that the PM could not merely bring back her Brexit Deal for yet another vote, as it had been defeated already. “Theresa May could be breaking Commons rules if she keeps bringing her Brexit deal back to the Commons after multiple defeats, a cabinet minister has admitted” told the Indy. And who was the minister concerned?
“MPs should not be asked ‘the same question’ in the same session, Andrea Leadsom acknowledged - potentially allowing the Speaker to rule a third ‘meaningful vote’ out of order … ‘There is something called “the same question” issue, which is where you can’t put exactly the same wording to the House in the same session multiple times,’ Ms Leadsom, the Commons leader, said. ‘So there is a technical question in terms of House procedures as to whether you can keep doing that’”.
Have a think about that. She already knew of the precedent which Bercow quoted on Monday. She already knew that there was the potential for the Speaker to rule out a third “Meaningful Vote”. Yet even knowing what might be coming, she still added “If the EU were to concede a resolution to the backstop that might command the majority of the House, then theoretically there could be a way to bring that meaningful vote back again”.
Speaker Bercow told the Commons last Wednesday “There are historical precedents for the way such matters are regarded. I don’t need to treat of them now and no ruling is required now … A ruling would be made at the appropriate time”. So when it was known that the Speaker had a statement to make on Monday, it was obvious what was coming.
What, then, has Ms Leadsom done since hearing the statement at which she feigned surprise, after knowing a ruling would be made, and that it could rule out another Meaningful Vote? She’s argued the toss with the Speaker openly, and is now touring broadcasters carping that Bercow is biased. It’s all so terribly unfair.
Except it isn’t unfair. What this charade has demonstrated is that Andrea Leadsom is not fit to sit in the Commons, let alone be promoted way beyond her abilities as Leader of the House. She doesn’t know what on earth she’s doing, and all she can do to cover her tracks is to deploy smears and abuse - then claim Bercow is discourteous. On top of that, today she is suggesting parents stop children learning that some people are LGBTQ.
If the Tories really have no-one better than that to perform that job, the country is totally screwed. But most of you had already figured that one out.
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