Sir Keir’s spin doctors have been enjoying clips of Tony Blair’s performances as opposition leader. In the mid-1990s, Blair took aim at John Major with this, ‘I lead my party, he follows his.’ At today’s PMQs, Sir Keir tried the same judo-throw on Rishi Sunak. ‘I’ve changed my party. He’s bullied by his,’ he said. Less smooth, somehow.
The session was dominated by facile insults and awkward name-calling. Sir Keir wants to depict Rishi as a pampered globalist who spent the 2008 financial crash in the banking sector, ‘making millions betting on the misery of working families.’ At the same time, noble Sir Keir was putting ‘terrorists and murderers’ in jail. His ritual boast, ‘I was the director of public prosecutions,’ was greeted by screams and groans of pain, as if the house had suddenly filled with tear-gas.
Stephen Flynn, of the SNP, said he’d watched a telly programme last night that showed an unarmed man being shot dead by the Israel Defence Forces. Flynn asked the PM to call this a ‘war-crime’ on the basis of his third-hand testimony alone. Rishi declined. Flynn tried again and urged Rishi to ‘tell the people of these isles…that shooting an unarmed man walking under a white flag is a war-crime.’ Enemies of Flynn might suggest he was using this video to try and embarrass a political opponent on the cheap. Labour’s Tahir Ali did something similar. He claimed that Rishi ‘has the blood of thousands of innocent people on his hands.’
Rishi turned on his accuser. ‘That’s the face of the “changed” Labour party,’ he said tartly.
The issue that nobody, not even MPs, can ignore any more is ‘net zero’. Finally our governors have discovered that their policies will likely create net-zero jobs in Britain but jobs galore in Asian countries that don’t love us.