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Rishi Sunak’s first PMQs provide a glimpse into his political future

Rishi Sunak’s first PMQs provide a glimpse into his political future


The Prime Minister’s question is like the rise of partisan politics.

On the back bench, Conservative MPs found their voices and smiles.

Over the past few weeks, their demeanor has dropped and their heads sunk. But not today.

Rishi Sunak played what the Tories consider their greatest success: Brexit, upgrades and election-winning negotiations, and his backing MPs devoured it. The new prime minister looked confident, but his arms and legs could be seen occasionally twitching from the press gallery above the master bedroom, suggesting he was a bit nervous.

Mr Sunak admitted the woman he sent to be Home Secretary made a “mistake of judgment” in similar work last week, but he was “delighted to welcome her back”.

Sir Keir Starmer goes straight to the first key point for the new government: the appointment of Suella Braverman as Home Secretary.

Labor and the SNP see it as a deal to win support for Ms Braverman for her leadership campaign over the weekend.

And that won’t be the end: Labor will seek more concrete answers later. The past few weeks have seen an almost complete rejection of Liz Truss’ program to the government.

Today, during Rishi Sunak’s first PMQ, it was as if the last vestiges of his ideas were thrown in the trash. So his flirtation with Fracking in the UK was dropped, with the Prime Minister reinstating the 2019 “ban” on shale gas drilling.

It has also been suggested that the government will increase benefits that do not automatically increase in price based on the rate of inflation. Instead, Liz Truss wanted to align them with the middle income. What about pensions? Will they also increase with the spike in prices?

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman is less discriminating on this, but the importance of the manifesto has been mentioned many times. The Tory’s 2019 manifesto promises to increase the state pension to the top 2.5%, above average wages or inflation.

On immigration, Mr. Sunak’s team again referred to the manifesto – with a pledge to reduce net migration. “But the exact combination will be determined in due time,” its spokesman said, adding that it would reflect the “skill and talent” the economy needs.

What do Conservative MPs think? Several Tory MPs said the mood after the PMQs was “exciting” in the Commons tearooms. One said the MPs looked happy to be together for the first time in years. “Yesterday was relief, today is positive,” said one. Another said: “This is the first day in months that I wake up and don’t feel sick at all.”

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