Sledges of the Day

David Cameron is under pressure supporting the campaign to remain in the EU.

His party is divided on the issue though and Boris Johnson has come out in support of Brexit.

Cameron has reacted badly, but put in a veiled attack on Boris Johnson.

David Cameron had come to the Commons to make a statement on the EU referendum. At least, that was his official purpose. His real purpose, quite nakedly, was to treat Boris Johnson to the thrashing of his life.

It was extraordinary. In political journalism we often refer to “thinly veiled attacks”. Here, there wasn’t even a veil. Not even the flimsiest wisp of gauze.

Since the Mayor announced his decision to campaign for Brexit, some commentators have inferred that he doesn’t really want Britain to leave the EU; rather, he thinks a Leave vote would prompt the EU to offer Britain more favourable terms of membership, enabling us to stay after all.

It would appear that the Prime Minister shares this interpretation.   

“I won’t dwell on the irony,” said Mr Cameron icily, “that some people apparently want a Leave vote only to remain.”

Instantly the Commons was ablaze with noise. Everyone in the House was looking at, pointing at, and shouting about, Boris. The Mayor, lurking in the second row from the back, pulled an expression of injured innocence.

“Sadly, I’ve known a number of couples who have begun divorce proceedings,” continued the Prime Minister. “But I don’t know any who have begun divorce proceedings in order to renew their marriage vows!”

Pandemonium. The Mayor puffed out his cheeks, shook his head, laughed in mirthless disbelief.

With an almost successful impression of nonchalance, Mr Cameron reached for his glass of water, like a panellist who’s just brought the house down on Have I Got News for You.

“Let me end by saying this,” he said. “I have no other agenda than what is best for our country. I am standing here today telling you what I think!”

I don’t suppose that line needs a gloss, but let’s have a bash at one anyway. How about something like: “That deceitful snake coiled behind me cares for nothing but his own advancement, and is pretending to want Brexit for no other reason than he thinks it’ll let him pinch my job.”

Then Jeremy Corbyn got smashed with the Sledge of the Day.

At any other point in their history, Labour would have revelled in this Tory-on-Tory chair-flinging. But I’m not sure they really enjoyed it. It only made them look all the more irrelevant.

“Last week I was in Brussels,” burbled Jeremy Corbyn, “meeting European leaders. And one of them said to me…”

“‘Who are you?’” supplied Christopher Pincher (Con, Tamworth).

It was 35 seconds – seriously, I timed it – before the Tory mirth died down.

It’s a remarkable achievement. Even when senior Tories are openly savaging each other on the floor of the Commons, Jeremy Corbyn still manages to end up the butt of the joke.

Poor old Jeremy Corbyn. It won’t be long before the same sledge is delivered on Andrew Little.

 

– The Telegraph

 


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