PMQs as-it-happened

Ian Dunt By

11:56 - Late start. Session kicks off in five minutes or so. Expect lots of Tory joy over Miliband's current leadership troubles. Let's see if he can cut stop them laughing.

12:00 - And we're off, almost on time.

12:01 - Charlotte Leslie (Con, looks like Tintin) is looking forward to infrastructure in her constituency. There's a supermarket and a stadium built. Sainsbury's: the new ideology. Miliband is up, to roars of disapproval.

12:03 - Following the NHS reforms, have the number of people waiting more than two months for cancer treatment gotten better or worse? Cameron evades. "That was a very specific question I asked," Miliband replies. He says McMillan and Cancer Research are livid that they have missed their target. Are they wrong about the target? Cameron evades again. "We introduced a cancer drugs fund. The number of people being treated for cancer is up 15%." Then he talks about Labour run Wales, as he does every week. Miliband says he's wrong. "He wants to talk about Wales because he can't defend his record in England."

12:05 - He asks about people waiting more than four hours in A%E. Cameron says average waiting time is 30 minutes. He now goes on about Wales again. "People are dying on waiting lists and Labour are responsible." And now he's reeling off stats.

12:06 - Miliband looks angry. He shouts about the highest patient satisfaction ever during Labour's time in office. "He didn't answer the question. It's a target he set for four hour waiting." Apparently it has risen by 300% after reform. Cameron refuses to discuss it and talks about average waiting time. He now says the UK is recognised as the best health care system in the world. Actually, that was recognised under Labour. He then says it's "the best NHS in the world". Well, it's the only one.

12:08 - Has the number of people waiting four hours in trolleys gotten better or worse? Cameron again says the number of people waiting to get into A&E has dropped. He is a very evasive prime minister, but perhaps never quite to this shameless extent. We might as well pack up and go home. Cameron isn't answering anything.

12:09 - "The NHS is getting worse on his watch. There's only one person to blame and it's him," Miliband says. Cameron replies tellingly: "If he can't do better than that even on the NHS then he really is in trouble." Now he cites the Labour whispers about him. "I would say to the people looking glum behind him - cheer up folks it's only Wednesday."

12:11 - Snap verdict: Miliband: 3 Cameron: 1. There's no denying the role of dodging difficult questions in politics. That is not going to go away anytime soon. And of course it is in Miliband's interest to pick the most damning stats. But when a politician dodges a difficult question he ideally should do it in a manner that it is not immediately obvious what is happening. Today Cameron literally did not answer a single question put to him. He was like a deaf man in a crowded room, conducting a conversation with himself. Without wanting to be too shrill, it does make something of a mockery of the idea that PMQs is about scrutiny. He gets the one point because he made some effective use of Miliband's leadership troubles towards the end. But this was a shocking performance from the prime minister.

12:17 - Andrew George (LD, bidding to be Doctor Who) is wearing an appalling shirt/tie combo, the details of which I shall spare you from. Kerry McCarthy (Lab, not bad) mentions the Tories summer party with rich corporate donors, including one from Bahrain apparently. Cameron replies with attacks on - yeah, you guessed it - the union's links with Labour. "They bought the policies, we must never let them near the country," he barks. Tories love it.

12:23 - Jeremy Corbyn (Lab, troublemaker) asks about rent increases and short term tenancy in the private rental sector. "It's social cleansing that's happening in central London and it's coming to the rest of the country." He says we need rent control to "protect people". Cameron: "There is a need for greater transparency from letting agents... but full on rent controls wherever they have been tried have failed". He says Labour's shadow housing minister agreed "so perhaps he might like to have a word with her before he comes on to me".

12:25 - Tony Baldry (Tory, looks and sounds it) attacks Miliband for not being up for a referendum on Europe. He says he gave him a leaflet promising one from Michael Foot as a 14 year old. Cameron: "As a 14 year old if that was his idea of fun, well, we have to make room for everybody." Shouts from the Labour bench. "What's my idea of fun? It's not hanging out with the shadow chancellor."

12:27 - Coming in on the end of the session, you'll be pleased to hear. Lib Dem Greg Mulholland (sleepy) wants the PM to celebrate cycling. "It's brilliant the Tour de France is starting in Yorkshire". Am I the only one that finds that rather odd?

12:28 - Dennis Skinner (Beast, Labour) asks: "As an outpatient where I have to visit on a regular basis, I do hear about the problems in the health service from the front line. The nurses lost real pay, the A&E is bursting at the seams, nearly every hospital in Britain is running into financial difficulty. As a member of the Bullingdon club, is he proud to be surrounded for this wreckage?" Standard intervention from Skinner there. Cameron says he doesn't recognise the picture he's painted. Michael Ellis (Tory) has combined "long term economic plan" with "potholes". It's finally happened.  Let's all pack it in and go dancing. There's no point covering this anymore. "Mending potholes is good for hard working families." The PM literally just said that.

12:35 - Burnham intervenes at the end of the session on a point of order. He says the PM misled the house on falling waiting times. He seems very convincing but Cameron angrily replies that he's using dodgy statistics. Bercow sees that this is not really a point of order but an "action replay". He leaves it there, as shall we. Jesus. "Mending potholes is good for hard working families." He really said that. See you next week, where you will find me in a ditch with a bottle of whiskey and a revolver.

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