HC Deb 23 October 1979 vol 972 cc193-4
Q4. Mr. Freud

asked the Prime Minister what are her current criteria for making a ministerial broadcast.

The Prime Minister

There has been no change in the published criteria.

Mr. Freud

In view of the cuts, and rumoured cuts, in health, education and social services, and the proposed disappearance of foreign husbands from the hearths of English wives, does not the Prime Minister feel that it is about time she spelt out her programme for this parliamentary Session in a ministerial broadcast?

The Prime Minister

I think that the place to spell that out is in this House, and it will be spelt out each day. As for the hon. Gentleman's comments about cuts in health and personal social services, last year the Labour Government spent—and these figures are corrected and are on the same price basis—£9,055 million on health and personal social services. This year the figure will be £9,109 million, which is an increase in real terms.

Mr. Adley

Will my right hon. Friend make as many ministerial broadcasts as possible so that we may all enjoy the sight of the Parliamentary Labour Party and the National Executive Committee of the Labour Party arguing about who replies?

The Prime Minister

I am not over much in favour of either ministerial or party political broadcasts. I think that people prefer to watch "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy".

Mr. Norman Atkinson

Will the Prime Minister take the opportunity of a broadcast to reassure the British people that she did not mean what she said in her bellicose response to the Soviet initiatives in Europe? Is it not true that the Foreign Office is privately saying that when she shoots from the hip on these occasions she betrays an immaturity in international affairs? Will she now welcome the detente which it is possible for her to take up and accept on the next occasion?

The Prime Minister

I think that the complaint of the Soviet Union was that I shot with deadly accuracy.

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