Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:25 am on 11th July 2019.

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Photo of Mel Stride Mel Stride Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons 11:25 am, 11th July 2019

Well, it is the same old tune from the hon. Gentleman. When it comes to music he is highly accomplished, but once again he has blown his own trumpet and tried to bang the drum for independence, but ended up just dropping another clanger, not least by drawing attention to his slim majority—a very unwise thing to do in this place. I think his majority is 20 or thereabouts, but I suppose 20 is enough. I am pleased, though, that he offered to join me on the bus trip. It is more like a car trip at the moment—[Interruption.] I have been deserted by just about everybody I have offered that opportunity to, but if it is just the two of us, so be it; I will look forward to it.

The hon. Gentleman raised the issue of Prorogation. I refer him to my earlier comments, in which I was clear as to where the Government stand on that matter. However, I am intrigued to hear about the Bill that he is bringing forward for the appointment of the Prime Minister from this House, because it reveals, nakedly, the hon. Gentleman’s ambition. At one point he issued a manifesto to become Speaker, Mr Speaker, and now we find that he clearly has designs on being held aloft and marched to Downing Street, on a majority vote of this House. He might be slightly delusional but, were that to happen, the ultimate and rather beautiful irony would be that he would, of course, become Prime Minister of our wonderful United Kingdom.