Selected Quotes: Covid-19 Debate 6th January 2021

Boris Johnson (Con)

We are in a tough final stretch, made only tougher by the new variant, but this country will come together. The miracle of scientific endeavour, much of it right here in the UK, has given us not only sight of the finishline but a clear route to get there….and every needle in every arm makes a difference.

Kier Starmer (Lab)

We had a tiered system that did not work, and then we had the debacle of the delayed decision to change the rules on mixing at Christmas. The most recent advice about the situation we are now in was given on 22 December, but no action was taken for two weeks until Monday of this week.

Chris Grayling (Con)

The Prime Minister is also only too well aware that thousands of businesses,… face desperate times.

Ian Blackford (SNP)

Finally….yesterday morning the Scottish Conservatives were busy making memes about an extra £375 million of Treasury support that they said was on its way to Scotland. Can the Prime Minister explain to Scottish businesses why, by the end of the day, it turned out there was no new money at all?

Jeremy Wright (Con)

…so I thank him [Johnson], in particular, for the access he has given Members of this House to the Government’s medical and scientific advisers so that we can understand them better. Does he agree that just as it is important that everyone understands the reasons why we have gone into a national lockdown, it is just as important that everyone understands the circumstances that will allow us to leave it.

Ed Davey (LibDem)

….will the Prime Minister instruct the Chancellor to publish an emergency Budget and to include a business rates holiday next year, an extension to furlough until at least the summer and support for every self-employed person in the UK, including those he has so far so unfairly excluded?

Liz Saville Roberts (PC)

Yesterday, it appears that the Chancellor….unwrapped £227 million of already announced funding as new for Wales. This is, and I choose my words with extreme restraint, wilful misrepresentation, which deliberately misinforms desperate businesses in Wales.

Caroline Lucas (Green)

It is extraordinary that, yet again, the Prime Minister did not say a word about the Government’s test, trace, isolate and support system. Vaccination and lockdown are essential tools but they do not replace the need to trace infections and isolate cases to help break the chain of transmission. It is an enduring scandal that we still do not have an effective contact tracing system, despite a whopping £22 billion being thrown at private companies and consultants….

William Wragg (Con)

Will the Prime Minister ensure that he blasts away any bureaucratic barriers that are getting in the way and ensure that vital vials and other such equipment are in abundant supply, because, frankly, there will be no excuses for any hindrance to this supreme national effort?

Sammy Wilson (DUP)

Prime Minister, for the third time in nine months, the Government have introduced a damaging lockdown policy, which we know will cause thousands of businesses to go bankrupt, cost hundreds of thousands of jobs, damage children’s education, lead the national debt to soar and remove basic liberties from people…all because the Government say….that we need to suppress the virus, protect the national health service and protect the vulnerable. Since those objectives [failed]…Is there some firm evidence for it or are the Government just hoping that it will be third time lucky?

Sir Desmond Swayne (Con)

Notwithstanding the assault on liberty and livelihoods, why are the regulations pervaded by a pettifogging malice?

Lucy Powell (Lab)

….will the Prime Minister urgently tell his Chancellor to come to the House with a proper plan for jobs and businesses? I say to him, please do not insult us by re-rehearsing what he has already done, because honestly, it is just not enough.

Carol Monaghan (SNP)

We have had Christmas on, Christmas off; schools in, schools out; eat out to help out; and stay at home. It is simply impossible to decipher the Prime Minister’s covid strategy.

Dr Liam Fox (Con)

May I congratulate my right hon. Friend on getting a world-leading vaccine strategy going?

Tracy Brabin (Lab)

…when will the Chancellor be coming to this House…so that those taxpayers do not feel that they are completely abandoned by this Prime Minister?

Dr Ben Spencer (Con)

Once we have vaccinated the high-risk groups…what will be the metrics in decisions made on moving areas down the tiers and reopening schools?

Lucy Allan (Con)

Will my right hon. Friend make this roll-out a dynamic, can-do, logistical British miracle, saving lives and livelihoods and not wasting a single day in taking us out of this lockdown hell?

Derek Twigg (Lab)

Cancer treatment has again been delayed; even though four-week delays are associated with increased mortality, many cases were delayed for longer than four weeks in the first lockdown. Today, the Health Service Journal reports that the NHS is having difficulty in agreeing payments with private providers for surgery and treatment. Will the Prime Minister take action to stop any profiteering and ensure that private providers use their capacity for NHS patients requiring urgent surgery?

Sir Edward Leigh (Con)

Will the Prime Minister tell people…that there has to be an element of self-reliance, self-isolation and looking after our own health, and that we cannot just rely on successive lockdowns?

Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi (Lab)

Does the Prime Minister agree that the constant last-minute U-turns and this erratic approach to policy making are not conducive to assuaging the anxieties of people who are desperately seeking stability, certainty and assured leadership?

Dame Margaret Hodge (Lab)

My local hospital, Queen’s [Romford], is one of many that is facing critical pressure on the supply of oxygen to patients. Demand for oxygen is running at 100% or more of the supply available. Will the Prime Minister assure me and my constituents that action is being taken to ensure a safe and secure supply of oxygen?

Boris Johnson replied….I will immediately look into the matter that she raises about oxygen at Queen’s Hospital.

Alyn Smith (SNP)

….according to the House of Commons Library…the UK Government have chosen to spend £3.3 billion of borrowed money on the stamp duty freeze, which is a vast subsidy to the middle classes who are buying and selling domestic property, who do not need subsidy.

Sir Christopher Chope (Con)

May I ask my right hon. Friend what the public health justification is for criminalising gatherings held exclusively between those who have already been vaccinated for more than three weeks, where there is no risk of infection or transmission?

Pete Wishart (SNP)

I wonder whether the Prime Minister has had a cursory glance at Scotland and seen the massive approval ratings for our First Minister and her handling of the covid crisis. Has he observed the clear leadership she has offered our nation? Does he ever think about comparing his poor performance with hers and wish that he could offer the same type of leadership to the UK?

Source

Covid-19 – Wednesday 6 January 2021 – Hansard – UK Parliament

John Redwood (Con)

I am very worried about the loss of liberty. I am very worried about the economic damage. I am very concerned about all those small businesses that have been shut down, and their livelihoods undermined. I want the Government to introduce a more urgent, convincing exit strategy…

Andrew Rosindell (Con)

….I cannot justify such a fundamental assault on their liberties and livelihoods. Removing people’s most fundamental rights and freedoms and confining them to their homes is a political decision.

[These are typical of those MPs opposing the third lockdown.]

Source

There were further debates during the day this one attracted Conservative MPs who wanted to distance themselves from the Covid-19 restrictions Public Health – Wednesday 6 January 2021 – Hansard – UK Parliament

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