OH, what a laugh at today's PMQs. What merriment and jolly japes. How the MPs roll in the aisles, hooting to their hearts' content. Silly season has begun!

The topic under discussion?


That's right, it's Keir Starmer's questioning about rape prosecutions and convictions in England that inspires such hilarity, and a crescendo of spluttering fury from a Prime Minister who is reduced to jabbing his finger at his opponent and declaring him weak.

“HAHAHAHA” is the theatrical response to this from one MP, as a Scottish voice can be heard saying “dear oh dear”. “You can always tell when he’s losing, Mr Speaker,” says Starmer with a chuckle, apparently forgetting that the people “losing” in all of this are the survivors of rape and sexual assault.

READ MORE: Michael Gove: Ian Blackford 'enjoys Westminster and doesn't want indyref2 soon'

It’s left to Lindsay Hoyle to try to restore some semblance of decorum. However, he lets the MPs off lightly by saying that due to the emotive and serious nature of the topic he needs to hear both the questions and the answers, and doesn’t expect shouting from the back benches. He should have shamed every one of them who responded to any of this with laughter.

Johnson, of course, is up to his usual trick of answering a different question to the one he’s been asked, going on about sentencing instead of what is needed to get more cases into court to begin with. There is, of course, little point in tinkering with sentences if hardly anyone is actually being prosecuted, let alone convicted, as Starmer points out.

One might hope that just once the Prime Minister will realise it’s not appropriate to burst into his well-rehearsed soundbite during this answer, but no. “They jabber, we jab, they dither, we deliver, they vacillate and we vaccinate!” he crows, and the Tory questioner who’s up next has to contain his chortles.

Shame. Shame on every single MP who giggled, tittered, hooted or otherwise made an utter mockery of this discussion.

READ MORE: Blackford presses PM on redirection of vital Covid cash to Union polling

Ian Blackford warns Johnson to be careful when asking his question about whether a £560,000 emergency Covid contract was used to conduct constitutional campaigning on the Union, as The Herald reports today. The PM errs on the side of caution by saying he does not know, and the SNP’s Westminster leader appears to take this as face value.

Diverting from the question of misused funds, Johnson misuses time by inserting a paean to the Union where his answer to Blackford’s question should be. Does anyone know if the PM has a Herald subscription? That would help him to get up to speed on a Wednesday morning.

READ MORE: SNP MP asks Boris Johnson to visit Scotland to boost independence support

In response to John Nicholson’s question about when he’s next planning to venture north (“a tonic for us, and toxic for his Scottish Tory apologists”), the PM replies that he is “seldom away from Scotland”. Is this true? Has he been making secret visits that we blinked and missed? Perhaps for security reasons he’s now just travelling around in a fridge, to save himself the bother of interacting with any Scottish people. Though if this was the case then you’d expect him to have more empathy with the Australian animals that can spend two days being transported for slaughter with no access to water.

Tsk, such abuse of Australia to mention this aspect of its animal welfare rules. Why must everyone be so rude by pointing these things out? Scotland might not have progressed at the Euros, but surely our nation can compete when it comes to meat production? What Johnson conveniently overlooks, week after week, is that when you enter a race to the bottom there can be no winners.