She had an important announcement to make to the nation. Broadcasters, newspapers, new media outlets and others gathered in anticipation. But all that Theresa May did was to moan that it was not her fault. She blamed other MPs, the EU, her own negotiators, the weather, the Downing Street cat, and a shortage of vegan sausage rolls at the Gregg’s outlet in Westminster Underground Station. OK, I made some of that up.
But you get the picture: our P-MINO (Prime Minister In Name Only) exhorted all those she had just denounced, as if in a Soviet show trial, to pass her Brexit deal. They could not make their minds up, she told, managing to forget that their minds had been sufficiently made up to reject that deal twice, and by record margins. Observers were unimpressed.
Kevin Maguire of the Mirror went from his usual sceptical to downright dismissive. “PM criticising ‘politicians’ was bizarre. May must've had a busy day on the M&S till”. James Melville was on the same page. “Summary of Theresa May’s statement: smug, haughty, self righteous, patronising, delusional, stubborn, hypocritical and pious. Everyone else is to blame. Back my deal. That’s it”. And then there was the democracy aspect.
Mike Hind considered that and despaired. “When the Prime Minister slagged off the elected assembly of her own nation for not doing her bidding, the gap between Brexit & democracy just widened. Amazing, unprecedented dissembling”. ITV’s Pauil Brand agreed: “the tone was strikingly divisive. Quite something for her to be attacking and blaming MPs - surely in long run that doesn't do much for trust in our democracy”.
And as to Ms May’s own standing, Clive Peedell had bad news. “May’s absolute arrogance to assume what the public want. Incredible. Worst PM in British history by a mile”. Zubaida Haque, who you can tell as she’s a doctor, added “Blaming MPs, including her own party’s MPs, for doing their jobs. Blaming MPs & others for creating divisions (hello Ms ‘Hostile Environment’?). Same message; different day”. And what about getting her deal passed?
Richard Murphy had bad news on that front. “If May guaranteed one thing with that awful appeal to the country it is that parliament will now never vote for her deal”. Alastair Campbell, who knows about persuading MPs, agreed. “If I was an MP moving towards supporting her deal that pathetic little footstamp would have pushed me the other way”.
As to rallying the country, J Clive Matthews had good and bad news. “Wow. Everyone I follow on Twitter thinks Theresa May’s a useless, time-wasting dick. After three years we've found something to unite the country”. Armando Ianucci explained why. “Interesting strategy: ‘I need the support of my Parliamentary colleagues, who are all idiots’”.
The mood of despair at Ms May’s inability to confront her own failings (leave alone actually serving the country) was summed up by David Allen Green: “Once Brexit is over, if it is ever over, I never want to see a podium ever ever again”. Gary Lineker was also in summarising mode. “So many repeats on television these days”. Well, quite.
Forget the exhortations of our free and fearless press papering over the cracks and keeping the bad news - that May is finished but can’t bring herself to admit it - from their readers. As long as she remains in Downing Street, we are utterly screwed. That is all.
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