November 2, 2022
Prime Ministers Questions
This week’s PMQs was another lively performance, with most of the focus being on Suella Braverman and immigration.
Today saw another U-turn from another Tory PM – Rishi Sunak has now U-turned on attending COP27. Whilst his appearance will be welcomed, the fact another Tory PM has started U-turning so soon into his premiership, it does not suggest a lot of stability in the government.
Sunak had previously said he would stick to the manifesto – but today he refused to commit to the pensions triple lock amongst others.
People don’t want any more spin – Ian Blackford
SNP’s Ian Blackford asks the PM if he will raise benefits and pensions in line with inflation. He said people “don’t need more spin about compassionate conservatism” but instead need “a straight answer to a simple question”.
Sunak says he can’t comment on specific fiscal decisions before the autumn statement, but added all decisions made by him as PM would have “fairness and compassion” at the heart.
Blackford’s second question reiterates his first about if the PM will protect those in need by increasing benefits and maintaining the triple lock on pensions.
He goes on to suggest the PM should bring in a windfall tax or reinstate the cap on bankers’ bonuses.
Sunak replies that he introduced a new levy on oil and gas companies, but again does not answer about pension and benefits.
PMQs LIVE: PM made grubby deal with Braverman, says Starmer
Starmer says PM is blaming others for the asylum system.
“So much for the new age of accountability,” he adds.
“Of all the people who arrived in small boats last year how many asylum claims have been processed?”, he asks.
PM says not enough claims have been dealt with and then once again attacks Starmer’s record on immigration.
Keir hits back saying just 4% of people arriving via small boats last year had their claim processed.
He says four thousand people have been crammed in at the Manston processing centre and diseases are breaking out, Starmer says.
Finally, he asks: “Did the home secretary receive advice that she should move people out?”
Sunak ignores the question.
But says Braverman has pledged new hotels, thousands of beds and increased staffing at Manston.
Starmer hits back again saying the PM made a “grubby deal” to reappoint Suella Braverman as home secretary “so he could dodge an election.”
He accuses her of breaking the ministerial code, losing control of a refugee centre and “putting our security at risk.”
Why doesn’t Sunak get “a proper home secretary”, scrap the “gimmick” of plans to send some asylum seekers to Rwanda, end small boat crossings and agree an international deal on refugees, he asks.
Sunak replies that Starmer “rightly raised the topic of national security”, using the statement to attack him for his support of Jeremy Corbyn in 2019.
Rwanda plan “isn’t working” – Starmer
Starmer says let’s have a look at the plan Sunak claims to have.
Focusing on the Rwanda plan he says it cost taxpayers £140million and no one has even been deported.
The deal “isn’t working”, Sir Keir adds. “He hasn’t got a grip.”
Sunak points the shadow home secretary, Yvette Cooper, being unable to answer a question on how to tackle migration.
Sunak replies saying people want to see the government getting a grip on migration. He then says Starmer voted against the nationality and border bills, the Rwanda policy and to end the free movement of people from Europe.
Sunak adds that not only do Labour not have a plan, they have voted against every single measure to solve the problem.
Tories broke asylum system – Starmer
Keir Starmer says Sunak’s home secretary Suella Braverman admits the asylum system is broken.
“Who broke it?” he asks the PM.
Rishi Sunak hits back at Sir Keir for suggesting the system is broken and instead points to the Tories delivering a Brexit referendum and ending the free movement of people.
No-one wants open borders, says Starmer, accusing the Tories of losing control of the borders.
He says Tories have been in power for 12 years and says Sunak is trying to “pass the blame.”
“How can it be anyone’s fault but theirs?” he asks.
PMQs starts …
The PM is on his feet –
Dame Meg Hillier asks what more Suella Braverman needs to do to get sacked.
PM Sunak responds saying Bravernment made an error of judgement, recognised the mistake and took accountability.
He said she had set out the full sequence of event and was not getting on with the job.
What time is PMQs today? PM Rishi Sunak faces Sir Keir Starmer
Today is prime minister Rishi Sunak’s second-ever PMQs. He gave a lively performance at his very first session and all eyes will be on him as Sir Keir is set to grill him on some pressing topics.
Here’s what you can expect from this week’s PMQs.
What time is PMQs today?
PMQs will take place on Wednesday 2 November, starting as always as midday from the House of Commons.
The session will last around half an hour.
How to watch PMQs?
You can follow along with live BLOG Updates here.
Or watch on Youtube.
What will this week’s PMQs focus on?
The issue of Suella Bravernman’s return to the cabinet is likely to be a big discussion point.
Braverman was re-appointed as Home Secretary, just days after Liz Truss had sacked her for committing two breaches of the ministerial code.
Without authorisation, Braverman sent a draft immigration policy to Tory backbencher Sir John Hayes from a personal email address, inadvertently also sending it to a staff member of another Conservative MP.
It’s likely they’ll be some jabs at the Tories over former health secretary Matt Hancock joining the reality TV show – I’m A Celebrity.
It could be a bit of an embarrassment for the PM.
Matt Hancock was suspended from the parliamentary Conservative Party after the news broke.
Many Covid-bereaved families are outraged that Hancock is “cashing in” on Covid.