PMQs: Mind your e's, u's and qu's

Written by Eu - on 23 January 2013 in Diary
Questions fly about the Commons unanswered, as the PM and opposition leader mirror each other's evasion over the EU referendum

AdiEU, sang the PM to the European Union this morning: music to his Brussels-bashing backbenchers' ears (read: EUphoria), but acceptable to a sceptical yet change-averse public - the negotiating of Britain's membership, and an emphasis on reform allowing him to cry 'in' on the future in-out ultimatum (read: EUphemism).

But he couldn't quite look Ed Miliband in the eye today at PMQs, as he was pressed tenaciously on whether he'd campaign to leave "if he doesn't achieve his negotiating strategy" and reminded of that beautiful time in October 2011 (read: EUtopia) when they once voted together against an in-out referendum.

“The people behind him,” Miliband explained gently to the PM about his backbenchers – often only ever behind him in the literal sense – “are cheering because they want to vote ‘no’”.

Pushing the line that the PM’s referendum plans are for the benefit of the Tory party rather than in the national interest, which Labour strategists clearly see as their strongest retort (read: EUreka), the Labour leader insisted that, four hours after the big speech that was six months in the making, Cameron still “can’t answer the most basic question of all.”

But he was a victim of his own success. Because he had no answers either. As the PM mirrored his opponent's tactic and yelled, “has he got a clue what he’d do?”

“The clue’s in the title,” Miliband said, “prime minister’s questions – he’s the one who’s supposed to be answering the questions.” A snarky quip allowing him to dodge committing Labour to refusing Cameron's reformed EU membership solution, despite currently opposing the in-out referendum option. This could put his party very out of step with public opinion, possibly rendering Labour’s election campaign in 2015 impotent (read: EUnuch).

“He needs to go away and get a policy” concluded the PM, probably pondering that he would one day too have to make up his mind.


a combining form meaning “good,” “well”.


Greek, combining form of eús  good (adj.) or eú, eû  (neuter, used as adv.) well.


Proof alone that we can’t trust those Europeans...


Tags: Anoosh Chakelian, David Cameron, Ed Miliband, EU REFERENDUM, PMQs January 2013

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