PMQs 13/09/17: Instant Reaction


Analysis by Matthew Waterfield

Note: views expressed are those of the individual and not representative of TalkPolitics

This week, PMQs was dominated by economic issues, most significantly the government’s decision yesterday to abandon the public sector pay cap. While the announcement of a pay rise for public sector workers is usually greeted with cheers, the change was instead weaponised by Jeremy Corbyn, who accused them of not going far enough.

He used this as his main line of attack against Theresa May, claiming that the pay rises should have been larger and that they also should’ve applied to other public sector workers as well as police and prison officers, such as nurses.
But May, not an agile Commons performer, is used to parrying and deflecting these attacks, and she deployed the same tactics today. She claimed that some police officers are earning over £9,000 more than they were in 2010.

All in all, it was a fairly predictable, unexciting exchange. Labour attacked the Conservatives on austerity and the Conservatives defended themselves by pointing to their economic record, with May’s statistic of choice being the impressive unemployment figures that were published yesterday.

It was a PMQs session that could easily have taken place in 2013, but the absence of David Cameron’s humorous jibes and Ed Balls’ hand gestures made this occasion a much more dreary affair. Hopefully future exchanges will be a little livelier, as this one resulted in nothing more than a stale tie.

N.B. Post-publishing, this piece was subsequently moved to the ‘Be A Voice’ section.


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