*This article was written by David Seimarsson, Editor in Chief of the Telegraph*
According to calculations done by the Telegraph, Labour Secretary Stalin1953 failed to answer 53% of initial questions put to him at Ministers Questions, a figure that will be a fresh headache for Government leadership.
The Secretary answered just 20 of the 43 initial questions put to him. When followup questions and answers are included this figure becomes 23 out of 46.
Several former Cabinet Secretaries have fallen foul of failing to answer a majority of their MQs, with several resigning or being sacked as a result.
During Blurple 2 sophisticatedmurder, the International Development Secretary was dismissed as a result of failure to answer MQs, with Labour and the Lib Dems among those to push for their dismissal. During the first Blurple government InfernoPlato would resign as Energy Secretary following an MQs session where he missed over half the questions, while during Sunrise JellyCow99 infamously refused to step down as Home Secretary after missing over half of the questions put to them.
Even without the missed MQs, this session was still garnering significant political attention due to a number of controversial comments from the Labour Secretary.
The Labour Secretary came out in favour of closed shop practises, a union arrangement where employees are required to be a member of a specific union and makes their continued employment conditioned on said membership. This broke from the government line, as when the government Press Officer was asked if the government supports closed shop practises the answer provided was “no”.
Globalisation was the target of criticism from the Labour Secretary, who blamed globalisation for “rapid urbanisation, increasing economic inequality, increased poverty and homelessness, and increased deprivation”. This comes as the government is in the midst of talks with the EU regarding a free trade agreement, and after the Labour manifesto included a promise of unilateral tariff abolition.
They also criticised corporation tax cuts, which have been planned and announced by the Chancellor already, offering another example of a CCR breach.
This MQs session will be a new political problem for a government that doesn’t need one right now, and will provide a challenge to justify for the Prime Minister and the rest of the government leadership.
The government has yet to provide comment.
The Shadow Work, Labour and Skills Secretary Tommy2Boys made the following comment
“Labour need to first of all show up to parliament and do the minimum required of them. And then once they’ve got a grasp on that they should start pushing policies which won’t force people out of employment as they currently advocate for with closed shops, but policies which will encourage job creation such as cutting corporation tax.”
The following comment was provided by Libertarian Leader Friedmanite19:
“It was interesting to see the Secretary come out against the Chancellor’s proposal of reducing corporation tax telling the House there are more economic solutions to achieve the above apart from corporation tax changes. Clearly during the session CCR went out the window on corporation tax and closed shop unions. It was disappointing to see the government dodge scrutiny from the House as they left many questions unanswered.”