Politics.co.uk Blog

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Osborne takes it personally

The remarkable thing about George Osborne is how personally he takes it.

Watching the Tory front bench yesterday while Cameron eviscerated the Queen's Speech, it was amusing to note how tragically transparent Conservative's faces are.

To his left, William Hague and Sir George Young watched over the Commons like angels on the gates of a cemetery. Hague had a smile plastered on his face throughout, and he sat quite still, almost zen-like. He gives the sense of reliability somehow. Sir George never looked up from the ceiling. He looked as if he should have a post-coital cigarette. We were informed today he was the man who had a phone call with Sir Christopher Kelly yesterday. When? No-one's really sure. If it was before the Speech was delivered, it would be considered naughty.

Ken Clarke looked perturbed, and interestingly, he looked most perturbed when glancing at Cameron. I was reminded of Sir Edward Heath's analysis of William Hague while he watched the then-Tory leader destroy Tony Blair at the despatch box. Apparently, he turned to Charles Kennedy and whispered: "Such a vulgar little man." I don't agree, really, but I very much enjoy that he said it.

But most interesting of all was George Osborne. Every joke by Cameron he laughed boisterously at – even genuinely. Every attack on Cameron, he stared at the MP like a vicious dog protecting its owners. He is a shadow of his leader, replicating Cameron's inner thoughts. It's obvious these two are close. But yesterday they looked like Romulus and Remus.

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