PMQs LIVE: Bare faced cheek! Boris explodes at Remainer Rayner over VAT demands

PMQs: Boris Johnson clashes with Angela Rayner

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The deputy Labour leader stepped up to the task after Sir Keir tested positive for Covid. With the cost of living crisis surging, Labour has been calling for VAT on energy bills to be scrapped to help ease pressure on households. Mr Johnson criticised the demands saying scrapping VAT was only possible due to Brexit – something Ms Rayner campaigned against.



  • Sir Lindsay Hoyle slaps down Rayner’s demand15:47
  • Boris Johnson accuses Blackford of ‘total nonsense’15:30
  • Ian Blackford urges the PM to copy Sturgeon15:26
  • Labour’s ‘bare faced cheek!’ bashed by Boris15:17
  • Rayner demands Boris ‘stand up’ to Rishi15:14
  • Rayner goes on attack on energy crisis15:11
  • PMQs taking place at 3pm11:54
  • Sir Lindsay Hoyle slaps down Rayner’s demand

    Just as PMQs draws to a close, Ms Rayner makes a point of order.

    She accused the Prime Minister of having misled the House by when he said he never said inflation would not rise. She asks him to correct the record.

    Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle is having none of it. He says it is a point of clarification not a point of order and he will not extend the PMQs debate.

    Boris Johnson accuses Blackford of ‘total nonsense’

    Mr Johnson responds by saying the SNP leader is taking “total nonsense”.

    He says: “This is a government that is absolutely determined, as I’ve said throughout this pandemic, to particularly look after the poorest and the neediest.”

    He adds Mr Suank’s economic measures were “extremely progressive”.

    The SNP’s Westminster leader calls on the PM to apologise for the ‘cost of living crisis’

    Mr Blackford says for members of the Tory Government £1,200 may not seem like much but for the “vast majority of families losing £1,200 a year will be catastrophic”.

    Boris defends his record during Covid

    Mr Johnson says he usually has “very good relations off the pitch” with the SNP Westminster leader before attacking the Scottish politician.

    He says in response to his question: “What we are doing is helping families up and down the country making sure a single mother with two kids gets £1,200 more on her universal credit, £1,000 more from an increase in the living wage.”

    Ian Blackford urges the PM to copy Sturgeon

    Mr Blackford claims the Tories are making millions poorer.

    He asks: “Will the Prime Minister match the Scottish government and introduce a £20 child payment across the UK?”

    Labour would impose crippling nationalisation says Boris

    Mr Johnson responds by saying much of the decade the Tories have been in power has been clearing up Labour’s mess from when they were in power.

    He says a Labour Government would cripple the country by nationalising the energy market if it was in power.

    He says by contrast his Government has taken a “stabled, balanced and proportionate approach” to Covid and the subsequent economic hit.

    Rayner attacks PM and demands he ‘brush up his act’

    Ms Rayner says Boris Johnson is looking for someone else to blame.

    Taking a swipe at his new year haircut, she says: “It is not about brushing your hair, it is about brushing up on your act.”

    Labour’s ‘bare faced cheek!’ bashed by Boris

    It’s just after Christmas and panto season is still here in the Commons.

    He attacks Ms Rayner and Labour for demanding a cut to VAT on energy bills.

    He says Remainers are not demanding the cut despite it only being possible due to leaving the EU.

    “She campaigned to remain in the EU didn’t she?” Says Mr Johnson before starting a chorus of “oh yes she did”.

    He adds: “They now have the bare-faced cheek to come to the Commons and say they want to cut VAT for fuel.”

    Rayner demands Boris ‘stand up’ to Rishi

    Ms Rayner says the poorest families are being hit hardest by the energy crisis.

    She tells the House of Commons “even the Tory backbenchers have finally accepted Labour’s call to cut VAT” on energy bills.

    She says: “Any decent government would find a way to help families.

    “So will he finally stand up to his Chancellor and do the same?”

    Boris Johnson says Labour would have UK in lockdown

    Boris Johnson shrugs off the criticism from the Labour deputy.

    He says 2.2 million people are helped through the warm home discount and pensioners are supported with £300 winter fuel payment.

    He adds: “Let me just remind people of the fundamental difference between that party and this party.

    “They would have kept us in lockdown in July.”

    He says the Tories have been able to “keep the country moving and keep the economy growing”.

    Rayner goes on attack on energy crisis

    Ms Rayner claims the “Government is letting the energy market go out of control”.

    She says  thousands of families face a “disaster” due to tax rises and rising energy costs

    “Household bills are going through the roof. Working families are picking up the bill for his incompetence” she tells MPs.

    “This is an iceberg right ahead, so will he finally stop and change course … or will he plough on to what will be a disaster for thousands of families?”


    Boris touts Rayner to oust Starmer

    Mr Johnson takes a dig at Ms Rayner’s leadership ambitions as he stands up to respond.

    He says “it’s great to be here with the right honourable lady, the shadow secretary of state for the future of work” before adding: “We know the future jobs she has in mind.”

    Even Ms Rayner manages to chuckle at the joke.

    Rayner claims Labour ready to take power

    Ms Rayner says “inflation is about to hit six percent”.

    She claims the Labour Party is now ready to “take over and provide Britons with a better future”.

    She says millions of Britons fat a further pay cut as the PM hands them a tax hike.

    She asks: “What is the Prime Minister doing to address this?”

    Boris Johnson admits ‘difficult period’

    The Prime Minister says “inflation is always something we have to be careful of” as he says his Government is protecting the most vulnerable through a “difficult period”.

    He outlines the extra funding he has put in place to help those on low incomes struggling with the cost of living crisis.

    Mr Johnson says “we’re sticking with Plan B” of his coronavirus plan rather than locking down the economy to help keep inflation under control.

    Angela Rayner launches attack on inflation surge

    Ms Rayner begins by paying tribute to the “great Desmond Tutu” and thanks NHS workers for their hard work over the Christmas period.

    She asks the Prime Minister how he “got it so wrong” on rising inflation in Britain.

    Boris’s vaccine plea

    Boris Johnson opens PMQs by pleading with those who have not had a jab to come forward and get one.

    He says 34 million adults have now had a booster vaccine and his Plan B meant that England was able to elaborate Christmas without extra restrictions.

    Boris Johnson in the Chamber

    Boris Johnson is in the Chamber.

    PMQs is about to get underway with Angela Rayner vs the Prime Minister.

    Just 20 minutes to go until PMQs

    There’s just 20 minutes to go now until the Prime Minister takes his place on the frontbench of the Commons to face questions from MPs.

    When MPs broke up for Christmas Mr Johnson was facing discontent from his own party.

    There was a noticeable drop off in cheers of support from backbenchers during PMQs. Will his MPs stick by him after having a two week break?

    PMQs was last delayed 12 years ago

    Today is the first time since 2009 that PMQs has not taken place at 12pm.

    On that occasion Armistice Day, November 11 was a Wednesday, and MPs attended a service at Westminster Abbey.

    Like today, on that occasion the House of Commons did not sit until 2.30pm.

    Another unusual element of PMQs

    Usually there are 15 MPs pre-selected for questions for PMQs as well as those MPs who are awarded the chance to grill the Prime Minister after catching the Speaker’s eye in the Commons.

    However, today, just 10 MPs are on the order paper.

    It suggests some have had to withdraw their question, possibly due to catching Covid.

    New year, same old problems

    The first PMQs of 2022 is set to be dominated by the same issues that were hotly debated in 2021: Covid, cost of living, and Brexit.

    With the Omicron variant surging through the country, Mr Johnson has been grappling with how to keep England open while also ensuring hospitals are not overwhelmed by admissions.

    Gas bills, inflation, and planned tax rises have left Tory MPs concerned voters could turn their backs on the party unless a fix is found in the near future.

    And with Brexit, negotiations with the EU over the Northern Ireland Protocol continue to drag on. A deadline for an end to talks was originally set for November but ministers are now understood to be planning on continuing discussions until the end of this month.

    Sir Keir Starmer isolating for sixth time

    Sir Keir Starmer is missing PMQs after he tested positive for Covid this morning.

    It is the second time the Labour leader has contracted the virus and the sixth time he has been forced into self-isolation.

    Last time he tested positive Labour’s former leader and now shadow environment secretary Ed Miliband was forced to stand in for the Holborn and St Pancras MP with just 10 minutes notice.

    PMQs taking place at 3pm

    PMQs is taking place at the unusual time of 3pm today.

    The weekly Commons sessions normally takes place at 12pm each Wednesday.

    However, with today being the first time the Commons has sat since the Christmas recess and proceedings not set to begin until 2.30pm, the time for the regular diary fixture was pushed back for a one off session.

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