PMQs: Starmer attacks Johnson over social care plans as Tories insist prime minister is not losing grip – live | Politics

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Superficially, it seemed to go a lot better for Boris Johnson this week than last week. That was because Conservative backbenchers actually turned up in the usual numbers – last week many of them staged a rare boycott, leaving empty spaces on the green benches (not explained by a sudden conversion to the merits of social distancing) – and because they cheered Johnson loudly. But noise in the House of Commons needs careful interpreting; sometimes MPs are cheering because they think their leader is doing well, but sometimes it’s the opposite; the volume goes up because the leader is in trouble and needs support. Today seemed to be a good example of the latter – comfort chuntering, rather than enthusiasm chuntering.

Johnson did manage to bluster his way through his exchanges with Keir Starmer with some confidence and the occasional effective counter-punch. But, on the substance of the exchanges, he lost more or less 6-0, and Starmer was able to…

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