I am second to none in my disapprobation of our First Commoner, the egregious poison dwarf Bercow. His preening self-love, acidic bitchiness, partisanship, unpleasantness and monstrous ego all make him utterly unsuited to be a neutral, self-effacing, universally regarded Speaker of Parliament. Cunning rather than clever, and with the manner of a bullying young master at a third-rate school picking on second-formers ( "Are those zits, Cameron, or have they been throwing custard at you again?") he will not have endeared himself to any MP committed to the dignity of the Commons. Yesterday as the result of the vote was announced he put his face through any number of pubescent contortions for the cameras, none adding a millimetre to his stature.
Yet I agree wholeheartedly with the result of yesterday's vote. Gove screwed it up for Cameron - possibly deliberately? - and condemned Hague, who deserved a warm valedictory, to slink out of the House like a bad odour. It was clear his heart just wasn't in the motion, and prior to the vote when he was invited to escape the humiliation by withdrawing it, I'm sure he gave the idea serious consideration. The whole plot of a last minute vote was absurd, unparliamentary and partisan. Gove, no stranger to pomposity and self-love, has felt the rough edge of Bercow's tongue and it must have hurt. By stooping to Bercow's level in attempting to be rid of him, he mistook the strange ability of the Commons to do the right thing at the most unlikely moments.