Is Tory selfie-obsession to blame for the empty benches at PMQs?

Written by Alain Tolhurst on 4 July 2019 in Analysis
Analysis

A number of Tory MPs swerved the chamber on Wednesday lunchtime, and instead of listening to Theresa May were upstairs in a committee room taking selfies with the man set to replace her.

The Prime Minister may be staying in office for another two weeks but it appears she does not command the attention of her party anymore as a number of colleagues posted photos of themselves with Boris Johnson - taken when they should have been supporting her as she took on Jeremy Corbyn.

MPs were given away by the fact that right behind them is a television showing the parliamentary television system, which confirmed both the time and the fact it was in the middle of PMQs.

The green annunciator screen, handily right in frame for a number of the pictures, says in capital letters “PRIME MINISTER’S QUESTIONS”.

Scottish Tory MP Ross Thomson tweeted a snap of himself and Mr Johnson with the pair holding a “Back Boris” banner, and ex-Brexit minister David Jones had one with a “Deliver Brexit by October 31” slogan.

 

 

Other MPs who tweeted almost identical pictures included Aldershot MP Leo Doherty, MP for Romford Andrew Rosindell, and Yeovil’s Marcus Fysh, who forced Mr Johnson to hold up a copy of local newspaper the Western Gazette.

 

 

 

 

And even former Cabinet ministers got involved, with the ex-Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom publishing a selfie with her and the man she is now throwing her right behind in the race to replace Mrs May after her own bid ended.

Mrs May will be hoping Mr Johnson doesn’t organise any more events at 12pm on a Wednesday as she prepares for her final two turns at the despatch box as Prime Minister.

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