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What's eating John Bercow?

In a rather hollow Q&A in the Commons on visitors to the Houses of Parliament, John Bercow came up with this stunningly fatuous proposal:

"One way to improve visitor facilities at the House would be to give young people the chance not merely to observe but to participate in our proceedings. Does the hon. Gentleman agree with that proposition and, if so, does he accept that there is a powerful case for acting to ensure that organised school parties can have, at periodic intervals during recesses, staged debates on the Floor of the House to enhance their interest in this House and to prepare them for their future contributions? [ Interruption . ] The fact that my hon. Friend the Member for Macclesfield (Sir Nicholas Winterton) disagrees gives me great hope for the future".

I cannot say that either of those individuals are among my favourite members of the Blue Team, but I would normally expect to sympathise more with Bercow than Winterton. Perhaps Bercow should keep his bright ideas to himself in future.

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Anonymous h. blears said... 8:48 am

Enjoyably fatuous.  



Blogger Praguetory said... 9:06 am

That man is all over the shop at present.  



Blogger Croydonian said... 9:42 am

Hello Hazel. Nice to see you can take time out from the deputy leadership contest to see what's happening elsewhere.

PT - Must say I hadn't noticed. He was being talked up as a potential defector to Labour a while back, wasn't he?  



Blogger Praguetory said... 9:52 am

Hmm. The incident I had in mind was where he had told Steve Richards that to campaign on more grammars was suicidal (paraphrased in this column)

http://comment.independent.co.uk/columnists_m_z/steve_richards/article2567966.ece

and then signed this letter the following week.

http://www.buckinghamshireexaminer.co.uk/archives/2007/05/breaking_news_b.html

Some people ask why a moderniser isn't nearer the Shadow Cabinet. This episode appears to explain.

http://conservativehome.blogs.com/toryleadership/2005/09/bercow_attacks_.html

Hasn't he left the Shadow Cabinet twice, too? Complete loose cannon.  



Blogger Croydonian said... 10:00 am

Thanks for that. I tend to steer clear of The Independent as daily scanning of The Guardian on-line is quite sufficient to keep my blood pressure at a near critical level.  



Blogger Justin Hinchcliffe said... 11:15 am

I can't see why it's a bad idea (to allow school children to use the House for debates when Members are not sitting). Agree, though, that JB is a loose cannon - always has been!  



Blogger Croydonian said... 11:23 am

I can foresee lots of additional staffing, a great deal of vandalism and it being an altogether pointless exercise - children interested in politics will already be doing something, and those who are not will gain nothing from the exercise. Cynical, moi?  



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