Sunak offers ‘Cameron-like’ performance for first PMQs against Starmer

Rishi Sunak offers ‘Cameron-like’ performance says Ben Habib

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Rishi Sunak’s performance in the House of Commons has been branded “Cameron-like” after commentators noted the new Prime Minister appeared to have departed from the “bluster” of Boris Johnson’s premiership style. Sunak served as Chancellor under Boris Johnson and observed from the Conservative frontbench in the Commons as the former prime minister spent months countering the opposition leader Sir Keir Starmer. Now having succeeded Liz Truss to enter Number Ten himself, it appeared the new Prime Minister had adopted a “smooth” and “intellectual” approach to countering challenges during his debut Prime Minister’s Questions.

Former Brexit Party MEP Ben Habib offered his analysis of the Prime Minister’s first Commons appearance since his election.

Speaking to GB News, Mr Habib reported: “It was a very assured and polished performance, almost Cameron-like. 

“Gone was the bluster of Boris Johnson and in was the smooth, intellectual delivery of Rishi Sunak.”

He added: “I thought for Rishi Sunak it was a first-class performance versus Starmer.”

After Liz Truss formally announced her plan to step down as Prime Minister, there was fierce speculation from within the Conservative Party that Boris Johnson could make a shock return to Downing Street.

However, Mr Johnson later confirmed he would not be standing, allowing Rishi Sunak to move forward in the contest without the challenger necessary to trigger a vote among the Conservative Party membership.

In a speech in Downing Street after being formally appointed Prime Minister by King Charles, Mr Sunak thanked his predecessor: “I will always be grateful to Boris Johnson for his incredible achievements as Prime Minister, and I treasure his warmth and generosity of spirit.”

Speaking on Wednesday from the dispatch box, Mr Sunak noted that he would no doubt share “robust exchanges” with Sir Keir during his time in office, but added: “I hope they can be serious and grown-up.”

Read more: Starmer fails to condemn Labour MP for vile attack on Rishi’s race

Discussing the performance of opposition leader Sir Keir, Mr Habib said: “In substance, I thought it was a really poor Prime Minister’s Questions. 

“Keir Starmer had an open goal – here was the man who presided over an accumulation of debt exceeding any previous Chancellor in history, a man who locked the economy down and caused the supply chain problems that now have caused the cost of living crisis.

“He couldn’t land a single punch on Rishi Sunak as a result of that. No to mention his wife’s non-dom status, his green card and of course the fixed penalty notice that he himself acquired by breaking lockdown laws.”

He concluded: “Starmer had an open goal and he failed to slot anything in it.”

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Sir Keir initiated PMQs by attacking Sunak for his decision to reappoint Home Secretary Suella Braverman in his Cabinet reshuffle.

The opposition leader noted the Prime Minister’s pledge to uphold integrity as he criticised Sunak’s decision to reappoint a Cabinet Minister who had been “deliberately pinging around sensitive Home Office documents from her personal account”.

Ms Braverman had resigned while serving under Liz Truss after she shared an “official document” from her personal email account, a breach of government policy.

The Home Secretary acknowledged her “mistake” in a letter to Liz Truss and noted that her decision to step down was “the right thing to do” given the circumstances. Less than a week later, Braverman reported she was “honoured” to have been reappointed to her role under the new Prime Minister.

Responding to Sir Keir, the Prime Minister noted the return of the Home Secretary would mean the government had an experienced Minister equipped to manage an ongoing expansion of the police force.

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