Wednesday 6 January 2010

the roar of the empty seats

Shortly before 5pm yesterday this blog got a retweet from @JohnPrescott saying he was going into the chamber to listen to Ed Miliband report on Copenhagen. The former Deputy Prime Minister said you could watch at BBC's Democracy Live.

Sure enough, there was the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change reporting on one of the most significant conferences that has ever taken place and one in which the Secretary of State had himself played an important role. Thanks to Twitter and the web, this blog watched Miliband's statement and the questions that followed from a laptop at home.

There were good intelligent questions from John Gummer, John Prescott, Colin Challen, Simon Hughes and others. There was also a really stupid question from John Redwood, who didn't appear to understand the difference between climate and weather.

But the most eloquent aspect of the live broadcast was the rows and rows of empty green seats. There must have been about 20 MPs dotted around the chamber. That means 626 other MPs thought they had something better to do than discuss Copenhagen and climate change. That spoke clearest.

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