Sunday, 1 March 2009

Cameron and the Cancellation of PMQs

I'm astonished that there is debate about the cancellation of PMQs last wednesday because of the death of Ivan Cameron. Before politicians are public figures they are people. PMQs is primarily for the leader of the opposition to hold the Prime Minister to account. It was right, decent and honourable for Gordon Brown to propose the cancellation of PMQs out of respect for Ivan's death.

It is a red herring to suggest that PMQs is not suspended for every soldier dying in Iraq, or every child killed. Politics is both an impersonal battle between parties, and a personal battle between individuals representing those parties. When a human tragedy affects one of those individuals, this overrides the impersonal battle: that's what keeps us, and politicians, human.

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