'I’ll make that decision': Moment Speaker Lindsay Hoyle tells off Boris Johnson over PMQs row

James Morris
·Senior news reporter, Yahoo News UK
·2-min read

Watch: Speaker Lindsay Hoyle tells off Boris Johnson over PMQs row

This is the moment House of Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle makes a veiled threat to mute Boris Johnson after the pair clashed at Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs).

Hoyle took issue after Johnson asked Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer if he supports Jeremy Corbyn’s membership of the party amid its ongoing anti-Semitism row.

Johnson was again appearing in the chamber via video-link due to his continued self-isolation after coming into contact with a coronavirus-positive MP.

Hoyle told Johnson: “It actually is ‘Prime Minister’s Questions’, not ‘leader of the opposition questions’.”

Boris Johnson during his exchanges with Sir Lindsay Hoyle and Sir Keir Starmer. (Parliamentlive.tv)
Boris Johnson during his exchanges with Sir Lindsay Hoyle and Sir Keir Starmer. (Parliamentlive.tv)

Johnson protested “it’s a reasonable question”, to which Hoyle issued a veiled threat to mute him: “I think I’ll make that decision. Thankfully we’ve got the sound… we don’t want to lose it.”

The Speaker was referencing how Johnson was inadvertently muted during his coronavirus announcement on Monday.

The bizarre exchanges continued when Starmer claimed he is “tackling the issues in my party, [Johnson’s] running away from the issues in his”.

The PM, on his video screen, then shouted “oh yeah” five times.

Johnson, meanwhile, is no stranger to reprimands from Hoyle.

Two months ago, the Speaker gave the PM an extraordinary dressing down in which he attacked the government for announcing legislation before it had been announced in the Commons.

Elsewhere in Wednesday’s otherwise low-key PMQs session, Starmer attacked Johnson over bullying claims surrounding home secretary Priti Patel, leaks from Downing Street to the media and Johnson’s handling of taxpayers’ money during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Starmer said: “I think it’s a clean sweep – bullying, harassment, leaking, wasting public money and obvious conflicts of interest.

Read more: The brutal choice facing (some) families under new Christmas COVID rules

“It’s the same old story: one rule for the British public, another for the PM and his friends.”

Johnson said: “It’s this [Conservative] party and this government that has given key workers, public sector workers above inflation pay rises this year as he knows – for police, for the army, for nurses who are now getting 12.6% more than they were three years ago.

“And it’s this government that will continue to increasing the living wage.”

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