Despite the best efforts of the Government Damian Green MP is here in the Commons today.
We have a right to know that the Home Office is riddled with illegal immigrants and that the Home Office – not the Government Whip’s Office – is studying the voting behaviour of Labour MPs.
If the approach taken against Damian Green was pursued when the Prime Minister was in opposition he’d have spent a lot of time in prison. He received leak after leak. What the people want to know is if the Prime Minister has the courage to defend the integrity of the Commons and the right to question Government. It’s time for him to come off the fence.
Ten minutes after getting up to speak Mr Cameron turns to the issues raised in the Queen’s Speech.
Mr Cameron says any increase in UK troops in Afghanistan must be accompanied by a much greater commitment from other NATO nations.
We welcome the NHS Constitution, the independent exam regulator, more security for ports and airports and greater police accountability – all Conservative ideas. The PM says we have no substance. Without Tory substance there’d be nothing worth having in this Queen’s Speech.
There is no social reform or public service reform in this Queen’s Speech.
And let’s look at Labour’s economic record. No prudence – we have the largest deficit in the developed world. No stability – with unemployment rising. No end to boom and bust – but the biggest bust because we had a debt-fuelled boom.
The real division between the parties is not, as the Prime Minister likes to pretend, between action and inaction but between the right action and the wrong action. The right action includes the kind of insurance for bank lending that Conservatives announced last week. We need a long-term plan to bring the public finances under control and reduce the long-term demands on government.
The Prime Minister constantly assumes that the British people are stupid; that they won’t realise that large tax rises are going to be necessary to fill the black hole in the public finances or that every economic problem in Britain is all America’s fault. As long as he treats them as fools they’ll never accept him as their Prime Minister.