Next to Boris, The Saj looked like a gleaming Tesla parked beside a Fiesta: HENRY DEEDES watches a downbeat Downing Street press conference
Boris Johnson was back in motivational mode – rubbing shoulders, ruffling hair and generally geeing everyone up again.
The Prime Minister bounded in to Tuesday’s Downing Street press conference to issue a rallying cri de coeur. It was time for us all to have a boost. Booster jabs, namely.
The arrival of the ominous-sounding Omicron strain called for ‘another great vaccination effort,’ he said.
It was time to ‘throw everything at it’.
He would mobilise the Army. He would throws vast pots of cash at NHS workers to work around the clock. Anything to just get jabs in arms.
‘We’ve done it before and we’ll do it again,’ he cried. Give Boris a rusty spit bucket and sponge and he could make a heck of a cornerman.
The Prime Minister bounded in to Tuesday’s Downing Street press conference to issue a rallying cri de coeur. It was time for us all to have a boost. Booster jabs, namely. Pictured: Boris Johnson (right), alongside Sajid Javid (left) at a Covid-19 press conference
Accompanying the PM was Health Secretary Sajid Javid – awkward, slightly robotic. But so much less annoying than his predecessor Matt Hancock, no? What a mercy it is that Hancock isn’t around for this development. He’d be puffing his chest out and milking it for all its worth.
Natty fellow too, the Saj. Stood next to the PM, he looked like a gleaming Tesla parked in the bay next to a dog-hair-caked Fiesta.
Unfortunately, he spent his time looking into the wrong camera. A possible ruse from the Downing Street media bods to make Boris look better.
Also present was the NHS’s newish chief executive Amanda Pritchard whom I hadn’t yet seen in action. First impressions?
Bit long-winded. A composer, one suspects, of lengthy memos and multi-paged PowerPoint presentations.
She heaped praise on her staff, who were ‘working unbelievably hard’. She said this several times over, to the point where it became a bit patronising.
She told of workers in North Yorkshire who delivered hundreds of shots during the recent storms via candlelight. Poor things. Just imagine the amount of Florence Nightingale jokes they must have endured.
There were several questions from the media about the UK Health Security Agency boss Jenny Harries, who earlier advised people to socialise less. Had she spoken out of turn?
Boris indicated that she had. He wanted a ‘balanced and proportionate approach’ while the scientists got to grips with the new strain.
All social events should proceed as planned. For some fathers roped into attending their children’s Nativity play this year, this may not necessarily have been the news they were hoping for.
Incidentally, nearly every query concerned the virus. Talk of Peppa Pig and Tory sleaze had vanished in the wind. A handy break for the PM, what with the Old Bexley by-election tomorrow.
Natty fellow too, the Saj. Stood next to the PM, he looked like a gleaming Tesla parked in the bay next to a dog-hair-caked Fiesta. Pictured: Health Secretary Sajid Javid during a media briefing in Downing Street
Earlier in the Commons, MPs held a debate on the new restrictions. Vaccines minister Maggie Throup was charged with opening the debate on behalf of the Government. Whose bright idea was that?
Tossing little Throup out to fend for herself against the Tory backbench bully boys was akin to throwing a hunk of juicy tenderloin in with a pack of ravenous hyenas.
By bully boys, I meant the so-called Covid Research Group (CRG) lot. The likes of Sir Desmond Swayne (New Forest W) and Steve Baker (Wycombe). They don’t like face masks, loathe restrictions and, whisper it, don’t always necessarily play nice.
In Throup, they saw easy prey. Throughout her speech, they came at her hard, eyeing fresh carrion, demanding she stand aside while they intervened. ‘Will she give way? Will she give way? Will she give way?’ they yabbered.
So hostile were their contributions, she began to give preferential treatment to the Opposition benches. Unfortunately for her, barely any had turned up.
Throup tried as best as she could to plough on in her lifeless monotone, but still her colleagues came for her, urging her to let them speak through a chorus of caterwauls.
‘I have already been very generous,’ she kept saying as she waved them away.
Poor Maggie. Her eyes swivelled, her mouth flapped gormlessly. A drowning swimmer gasping for air over the surf.
After 20 minutes, she finally managed to sit down – dazed and disorientated. Nurse! A large brandy and smelling salts please for the minister, if you’d be so kind…
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