Brexit madness has gripped Parliament and the Westminster MSM. Yesterday’s session in the House of Clowns (apologies to real clowns everywhere!) provided ample proof.
Yesterday the MPs provided overwhelming evidence that the House of Commons is more akin to a madhouse than a Parliament. They showed us that their policies are Alice-in-Wonderland policies and that they have the right to ride roughshod over the will of us, the people.
Yesterday’s HoC performance had four acts. First the PMQs, then the Special Report by the new Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr Javid, followed by the 2nd reading of that Surrender Bill, now called the Benn Bill and finally Johnson’s motion calling for a General Election.
I promised to watch – and watch I did, from noon onwards. It was pandemonium in PMQs, it was anodyne and boring for the next two acts, enlivened by something which gave rise to the most outlandish speculations of government skulduggery – more on that below.
More pandemonium ensued when Johnson came back to present his motion to call a GE. After that vote I simply didn’t have it in me to go and watch the Brexit madness in the House of Lords.
“Preventing a No Deal” is code for ‘No Brexit’. This has now, finally, incontrovertibly, been proven: Keep that in mind, keep pointing this out to Remainers everywhere. Remain MPs dropped their masks last evening, making it clear that all the shenanigans, the posturing, the shouting, are smoke and mirrors: they are hell-bent to stop Brexit. They actually said so.
I was stunned by the visceral hatred spewed forth in the HoC yesterday. It was not just the heckling and boo-ing – unheard of before, but allowed by the Speaker. In speech after speech it poured forth, undiluted. I am sorry to say that the female Remain MPs were the worst.
The parliamentary sketch writers, trying to be sarcastic, could not hide their dismay. Richard Littlejohn writes:
“If anyone is trashing democracy, it’s the majority of MPs, hell-bent on overturning the result of the 2016 referendum. […] They bleat about upholding parliamentary sovereignty. But only so they can surrender it to the EU. For the best part of the past five decades they have been content to sit back as the bulk of our laws and trading arrangements have been made by unelected foreign bureaucrats and judges. The self-styled ‘rebels’ say they want a deal. Boris wants a deal. We’d all like a deal. But they have deliberately stripped the Prime Minister of his only chance of securing one.” (link)
Michael Deacon wrote last night:
“The anger in the Commons today was something else. It wasn’t just political. It was personal. Steamingly, screamingly personal. MPs flinging insults at each other is nothing new. But usually it feels like a performance. Pantomime. Playing to the gallery. Not today. This time, the hostility felt all too brutally real. It started with the booing. […] Boos are not normal. Theresa May, David Cameron, Gordon Brown, Tony Blair: all were routinely heckled and jeered. But not actually booed. Especially not before they’d even sat down.” (paywalled link)
Finally, here is Quentin Letts:
“The visitors [a delegation from Lebanon] were subjected to a marathon of soul-dirtying malignancy, quivering insults, bad stratagems and bogus concerns. There was clapping (improper in the House) at moments of emotive hyperbole. We had histrionics, blubbing, an epidemic of self-pity. It was a bruising day for Boris Johnson but a pretty rotten one for our parliament, too.” (link, paywalled)
It actually was worse: it was remorseless. The Speaker finally showed for all to see that he is a biased Remainer. He allowed the screaming and shouting, he allowed the clapping for a piece of virtue-signalling by a Labour MP, a Sikh who seems to be more muslim than Sikh.
Sometimes Bercow let language slip by which belongs to the playground – not that we didn’t enjoy hearing BoJo call Corbyn a ’chlorinated chicken’! Bercow displayed his bias when he called MP after MP to speak in support of that Benn Bill.
Three wily old foxes on the government benches – Sir Bill Cash, Iain Duncan Smith and David Davis – got the speaker on record, forcing him to say that the Benn Bill did not need Royal Consent. According to mutterings on the twitter rumour mill a legal challenge is possible.
Next – the shambles about that amendment to the Benn Bill, presented by Mr Stephen Kinnock, son of that former Labour wannabe PM Neil Kinnock. It simply brings back the May WA. It was not supposed to be voted for!
What happened was that the Speaker left for a break, the Deputy Speaker tried to speed things up and called amendment after amendment while MPs milled around the chair, chatting. In the old-fashioned style, if there is no challenge (“all who say No” …) the amendments were passed quickly without the need to call for a vote. Thus the Kinnock amendment slipped in.
Ensuing cries of government skulduggery (“the Government didn’t provide any tellers!”) are infantile. I am not surprised that the MSM hacks, tweeting like people possessed, showed again their ignorance. I am also no longer surprised that the MPs showed their ignorance. They ought to know that is the Speaker from the chair who calls the tellers from the MPs present, not the government!
However, in the current demented atmosphere that is Westminster everything now is a plot. A Labour MP actually said that in her opinion ‘three men in No 10’ are conspiring to make us leave with No Deal … oh dear! One even screeched that it was Nigel Farage who runs the government … if only!
When Johnson came back to present his motion, calling for a dissolution of Parliament for a GE, the heckling rose, unchecked. The contrast between his and his supporters on the Tory benches and those opposed was striking. It was reasoned argument against hectoring, screeching and ad hominem attacks.
Gone was the customary veneer of politeness from the benches opposite. Instead we were treated to schoolmarmish condemnation of Johnson and Rees-Mogg, we were treated to opposition MPs bewailing the horrible thing Johnson did by throwing out Tory MPs who had voted against the government yesterday. How dare he! One such MP was even the grandson of Churchill!
Opposition MPs believe that they now also have the right to interfere into the governance of the government party. Mind you – the Tories played right into their hands: a group of them demanded Johnson to reinstate these rebels. Knifing the government and the PM they had just elected into the back – that must be without consequence provided it stops Brexit!
The visceral hatred these MPs have for Brexit came out in their even more visceral hatred for the one man they rightly regard as enemy, Dominic Cummings, Johnson’s chief adviser. Their hatred is amply and ably supported by the MSM, even by those not explicitly for Remain. The Remain masses in Westminster are all baying for his scalp.
And so to the grand finale: the vote against Johnson’s motion. Labour abstained, as did the Libdems. Only the SNP voted – against. This was the result: 298 ayes to 56 noes.
As opposition MPs left the chamber, a Tory MP asked jokingly if there shouldn’t be a motion that “This House has no confidence in the Opposition”, whereupon Johnson quipped: “And this is the first time that the opposition has shown confidence in HM Government”.
Meanwhile, the House of Lords was plodding on, having to deal with the over 100 amendments to the Benn Bill which they must get through before Parliament is prorogued on Monday. According to the DM, a ‘deal’ was made:
“Peers agreed early today that the No Deal bill would clear the Lords by tomorrow – Earlier it seemed Tory Lords would try to filibuster until Parliament is prorogued – Over 100 amendments were tabled and the Lords faced days of 24-hour sittings – But a dramatic breakthrough came as Labour and Tories agreed to pass the Bill -Clears the way for Boris Johnson to try again to win a snap General Election -Jeremy Corbyn said he would support the motion if government passed the bill.”(link)
If this is confirmed then Corbyn is in a cleft stick. He did say he would vote for a GE if the Benn Bill was passed. Johnson seems to calculate that a GE now will give him a mandate, based on the latest polls. We know what happened when Ms May thought she’d win such mandate in 2017 … and this time there’s a new player around, TBP.
We now know that most MPs and the self-proclaimed pundits who still tweet as if they knew everything are pig ignorant. Any predictions coming from those ‘sources’ are therefore just self-serving tosh and piffle. Nobody knows what will happen next!
Yesterday stands out though because it showed once and for all the undisguised hatred of the Westminster Establishment for Brexit and Brexiteers. All their pious words notwithstanding, they want to stop Brexit.
It’s official. It’s war – but we will