Variations on Jane Austen



Question to the Prime Minister

Q. Will the the Prime Minister tell the House what plans he has to visit the parish of Chawton?

Prime Minister. I have no such plans.

Q. Then will he tell the House why he has failed to comment on the rise in the number of families whose daughters are finding it increasingly difficult to marry husbands with adequate incomes?

Prime Minister.  I will take no lessons  from Right Honourable and Honourable members opposite on family policy when their years in office led to a rise in the number of spinsters living at home unprecedented since the beginning of the last century. [Interruption]

Speaker. Order, order. Let the Prime Minister speak.

Prime Minister. What I will say is this. Unlike the party opposite, the Laberalative Party understands the concerns of the country’s leisured classes. We will listen to public opinion and will remain on the side of  those women, yes, and their mothers,  who believe it is the duty of members of the landed gentry to share their wealth with attractive young ladies.

Several Honourable Members. Oh? Who do you have in mind?

Speaker. Questions to the Foreign Secretary.