Dscf1484_3Tony Blair is on his farewell visit to Washington so John Prescott is, perhaps for the last time, standing in for him. William Hague takes David Cameron’s place and Vincent Cable Ming Campbell’s. The encounter takes place in a chamber full of MPs wearing big yellow ribbons in support of the McCann family.

William Hague’s first subject: William Hague asked Prescott about the recruiting system for junior doctors. Prescott responded by ignoring the thrust of the question and resorted to attacking the Conservative party and William Hague in a typically incomprehensible manner.

William Hague’s second subject: Hague asked Prescott whether he would be supporting the Conservatives this afternoon in opposing Home Information Packs. By this time Prescott had found the right page so he started talking about junior doctors. When Hague said that Gordon Brown would not be "the change this country needs" Prescott seemed to confirm it when he said that Brown has been responsible for "an awful lot" of the Government’s record.

Vincent Cable’s subject: Cable asks Prescott about his environmental record. He asks Prescott whether he, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have the same "talent of the Conservative leader for making environmentally friendly but empty soundbites".

Line of the day: Hague referred to Gordon Brown’s love of invisibility but said that at his leadership launch "making himself invisible was taking think a bit too far".

Andrew Burkinshaw

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