Prime ministers questions

PMQs sketch: Nothing changes, yet everything is different

There comes a moment in a PM’s journey when he crests the ridge and starts on the downhill leg. David Cameron made that unhappy transition today. PMQs began with a gag from a Labour backbencher. Tom Blenkinsop: ‘The prime minister may believe there’s no alternative to the double dip. But some in the cabinet believe there is an alternative. To him!’ Cameron replied by listing his usual trinity of attainments. Lower deficit, more jobs, interest rates at record lows. Then Ed Miliband had a go. Instead of raising an issue, he went for Cameron’s reputation. ‘Given the government’s U-turn on alcohol,’ he said, ‘is there anything the prime minister could

Insults fly at PMQs

Today’s PMQs was visceral stuff. Ed Miliband accused the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of being Bullingdons Boy who were taking decisions about ‘people they’ll never meet, people, people whose lives they’ll never understand.’ Cameron gave as good as he got, attacking Labour as the ‘party of unlimited benefits’ and said that Miliband ‘only stands up for those who claim.’ These exchanges over the decision to limit the increase in working age benefits to 1% in the autumn statement cheered up both side of the House, the Lib Dem benches looked a bit glum though. Labour and the Tories are both comfortable with these battles lines—convinced that the public is