David Cameron should check his facts properly before spouting nonsense in PMQs

Debbie Abrahams in the House of Commons: Her performance at PMQs this week showed very clearly the weakness of our current Prime Minister.

Debbie Abrahams in the House of Commons: Her performance at PMQs this week showed very clearly the weakness of our current Prime Minister.

This Tory fiction is getting old very quickly.

Today, David Cameron spat out the current Conservative Government line about the people who have died while claiming incapacity benefits. He was responding to Debbie Abrahams, who has been a superb campaigner on the subject. Here’s her question:

“Two weeks ago, the Work and Pensions Secretary’s Department not only admitted to falsifying testimonies in leaflets, but published data on the deaths of people on sickness benefit, which showed that they are four times more likely to die than the general population. That was after the Secretary of State told the House that these data did not exist. Given that, and his offensive remarks earlier this week—referring to people without disabilities as “normal”—when will the Prime Minister take control and respond to my call for the Work and Pensions Secretary to be investigated for breaching the ministerial code?”

Everything in her question was accurate. The DWP has admitted falsifying testimonies in leaflets. The DWP’s data does show that people on incapacity benefits are four times more likely to die than the general population. Iain Duncan Smith had told MPs that this information did not even exist.

She drew no conclusions from these facts, other than that Iain Duncan Smith should be investigated for breaking the ministerial code.

So why did David Cameron go off on a tangent about “people being wrongly assessed as fit to work”? Ms Abrahams never even suggested that!

He said: “First, let me deal very directly with the publication of this data. This data was published because I promised at this Dispatch Box that it would be published, in a way that it was never published under any Labour Government. That is the first point.”

Point-less, in fact. And a lie. The data was published because the Information Commissioner had upheld my appeal against the DWP’s refusal to provide me with the information. It had nothing to do with any promises he made at the Dispatch Box.

“I also think we should be clear about what this data shows. It does not show people being wrongly assessed as fit to work. It does not show people dying as a result of their benefits being taken away.”

Pointless, again. Nobody is disputing that. It does, however, raise serious questions about whether people are being wrongly assessed as fit to work or dying as a result of their benefits being removed – questions that the DWP has failed to answer.

“If you listen to the organisation Full Fact, it has said—[Interruption.]” Whoever interrupted was quite right to do so. Nobody should pay any attention to Full Fact on this matter. As mentioned previously on This Blog, the article is drivel that is unfit for use as toilet paper.

Pressing on with his non-existent point, Cameron droned: “I have to say to [the] hon. Gentlemen shouting that two newspapers have printed that and had to retract it, so I think that people should actually look at the facts. A fact-checking organisation says: ‘It was widely reported that thousands of people died within weeks of being found ‘fit for work’ and losing their benefits. This is wrong.’ Perhaps the hon. Lady should read that before asking her next question.”

Perhaps Mr Cameron should learn the full facts about his own government’s benefit system before spouting such nonsense. The DWP’s statistical release states quite clearly that 2,380 people with a WCA decision of “fit for work” flowed off-benefit with a date of death at the same time, meaning (if one checks the small print) “those whose date of death is up to 14 days after the claim end date for ESA”. Claims are ended immediately when people are found “fit for work”, therefore these people passed away within two weeks of being found ‘fit for work’ and losing their benefits.

Or perhaps Mr Cameron is a liar.

Having taken the time to address three issues that had not even been mentioned, the Prime Minister then failed to answer the one question he had been asked.

So, when will Iain Duncan Smith be investigated for breaching the Ministerial Code?

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19 thoughts on “David Cameron should check his facts properly before spouting nonsense in PMQs

    1. Phil Lee

      He won’t be investigated by the man who’s instructions he is carrying out, that’s for sure.
      But Cameron won’t be in charge forever, and then there will be a reckoning, even if the ongoing UN investigation into human rights abuses doesn’t put the current regime on trial in the Hague, where they belong.

  1. John.

    The disgusting spivs are too busy pandering to their hedge funds paymasters and playing geopolitical, executive order, serial killers with their security service chums.

    Cameron is far too busy p***ing off the EU and feeding his psychotic tendencies with kill lists and drone strikes to give a s*** about the welfare of thousands of UK citizens.

    Has there ever been a political leadership in this country less statesmanlike and capable than these self-serving gilded toff clowns?

    Cast Iron, Towel Folder and Buffoon, the three stooges.

  2. Rupert Mitchell (@rupert_rrl)

    IDS and Cameron both need to be removed from Parliament as it quite obvious that their reasons for being there are not for the benefit of this country but for themselves and their rich friends. I only hope that when we get a decent gentleman (Jeremy Corbyn) elected that he, with our support, will work to rid the country of them.

    1. Christine Clarke

      So answer the question CAMERON GOING TO INVESTIGSTE IAN DUNCAN SMITH, answer the ladys quest, not a load of gobbledigook,

  3. A-Brightfuture

    Our overly emotional Prime Minister has no interest what so ever in the DWP and its goings on, he lies, because he has not a clue about any policy, just waves his arms about and shouts a lot.
    His interests lie in Europe, not the UK.

    A few times in HoC Mr. Cameron has said disabled people are exempt from the Bedroom Tax…absolutely bloody clueless to the point of being very dangerous. His finger is not on any pulse except his own.

    Even IDS has not a clue about the majority of DWP policies, he leaves that to top civil servants to move goal posts when needed.

    Neither of them like getting their hands dirty.

  4. peterwytt

    In Parliament your not allowed to say that a member is lying, you must use other terms to say the same thing. I think its time that Labour MP’s should use the word lying when they have prof that a MP is, They need to bring this Government under disrepute force the issue if need be, Bring this Government down and lets have another General Election.

  5. John Gaines

    Naw, Cameroon is far too busy playing at being a Modern Major General Buffoon, fresh from his mystery DRONE kills, Errr- we have no Drones, and spouting BS about hard Military force, is that sort of like the ‘Hard’ military Force we used to scuttle out of Afghanistan, that very same ‘Hard’ military Force, which very studiously stays to Hell out of Ukraine, along with its NATO FUBARS.
    This Oxford Stables bonking Warrior, which cost us a wasted £50Million to conceal his trysts, what a sad waste of money, is so far from sanity, that he should be escorted by Men in white coats.
    Get this Clown some HELP.

  6. Barry

    We are all to well aware that Cameron is a liar and that he will never do anything to investigate IIDS who he thinks is doing a great job in “cutting” unemployment.

  7. mohandeer

    Cameron also managed to score cheap points without answering properly the questions he was asked. On the Syrian crisis he condemned Assad but failed to mention the role Israel, Saudi, Turkey and the US are playing in slaughtering the civilians. The Saudi’s are well known for their crimes against humanity as are Israel and Turkey, yet he has decided that Assad must go. Why not the Saud “royal” family, or Netanyahu or Erdogan or Poroshenko currently committing genocide against Russian ethnics? It is the US who wants Assad out of the way so that Israel and Saudi can make a land grab. Cameron has no intention of aiding the Syrian people instead assisting the US and his friend Netanyahu. His lies and obfuscations are now just “par for the course” because we are so used to them. The Queen has allowed Blair and now Cameron to pursue their own greedy ambitions, it’s time she stepped up to the plate and denounced this slaughter both at home and abroad. Otherwise, can we have our £339,000 million back please?

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Why do people keep on about the Queen stepping in?
      She has no political power at all – any attempt to exercise such power would lead to a constitutional crisis.

      1. wildswimmerpete

        @Mike
        “She has no political power at all” but she has Royal Prerogative and could dissolve Parliament. That most certainly would lead to a constitutional crisis but it would be the better for the UK population.

  8. mrmarcpc

    Of course he’s going to spout lies, he’s a tory, they’re all liars, he couldn’t tell the truth if a shotgun was pressed hard against his head and was warned that if he lied one more time, they’d blow his head off, they can’t help themselves, it’s woven into the fabric of their DNA, they love lying, it’s the posh boys and girls way, bulls**t everybody, the right wing attitude and mind-set! Good to see Debbie sticking it to him again, if only more of them in the commons would do the same but a politician with a spine, as well as a conscience, is very hard to find!

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