Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:11 am on 9th January 2020.

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Photo of Jacob Rees-Mogg Jacob Rees-Mogg Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons 11:11 am, 9th January 2020

May I add to the right hon. Lady’s words about Pete Wishart, who will be very much missed from these sessions? It always amazed me how a man of such gentleness, courtesy and kindliness in private always managed to be so fiendishly angry in the Chamber. I look forward to seeing whether Tommy Sheppard, who I know is also a model of kindliness, will be similarly angry when he gets up to speak in a moment, but I look forward to our exchanges.

The right hon. Lady asked 11 individual questions, and I will do my best to answer them all. The House will always be updated by the Government on really important issues. The Prime Minister, in the last Session of Parliament, averaged 36 minutes a day at the Dispatch Box during the time he was Prime Minister, so I think he has been ahead of almost any other previous Prime Minister in his assiduousness.

As regards the Christmas recess—absolutely. We want to ensure that there is reasonable notice for all recesses, which I think is of general help not just to Members but to the staff of the House for planning their lives. This is important for all of us, so we will try to give the longest notice we can, though I cannot yet give the length of the Session—