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PMQs: Leaders trade dull insults as Andrew Mitchell holds court

9 January 2013

1:37 PM

9 January 2013

1:37 PM

No one could call today’s PMQs illuminating. Ed Miliband led on the whole embarrassment of a Downing Street aide being snapped with a memo about whether to release a full audit of the coalition’s performance. There followed some not particularly sharp PMQs knock-about. Miliband claimed the ‘nasty party is back’ while Cameron bashed Labour for having no policy and took his usual shot at Ed Balls.

There was a brief flurry of excitement when David Cameron declared, unprompted, that he had never broken the broken the law. Lots of the press are now pointing out various incidents when we know that he has. But in the Chamber it was clear that Cameron was talking about the hunting ban, the subject of the question, rather than more generally. It is, though, another reminder that the Prime Minister’s undisciplined approach to language can get him in trouble.

One new feature of PMQs at the moment is Andrew Mitchell holding court at the bar of the House. He stands there, looking visibly better than he did six weeks ago and Tories come over to welcome him back to the political land of the living. Today, it was Jeremy Hunt, one of the Cabinet Ministers who always believed Mitchell, doing so. It’ll be interesting to see if those ministers who helped push Mitchell out make their way over to him in the coming weeks.

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