Andrew Mitchell questions the Government about briefings and language coming out of 10 Downing Street.
I thank my right hon. Friend for his courteous and helpful statement, but I ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and, indeed, former Government Chief Whip: is he proud of the tone and character of quasi-official briefings and language coming out of No. 10? Does he think it is helpful?
My right hon. Friend was kind enough to say that I was courteous; I also thank him for the courtesy and thoughtfulness with which he addresses every issue in this House. He is right: it is important for all of us in public life, whether we are appearing here at the Dispatch Box or working for Government Ministers or Opposition figures, to use language that shows our respect for differing points of view, even as we hold robustly to our own.
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