The Banter Budget: Were Hammond’s jokes more embarrassing dad or best man’s speech?
There were jokes about economicky words, cough sweets and Top Gear.
Chancellor Philip Hammond delivered his first autumn Budget, laying out the Government’s economic and fiscal priorities and spending for the coming year – with a smattering of jokes too.
Alongside commentary on announcements about new Garden Towns, the abolition of stamp duty for many first-time buyers and an extra £3 billion for Brexit preparations, people looked at the delivery from Fiscal Phil.
Essentially they had questions about his style: was the Banter Budget more embarrassing dad or best man’s speech?
2017: The first banter Budget— Raymond Doherty (@RaymondDoherty1) November 22, 2017
What other analogies could Twitter come up with as Hammond delivered in-jokes on cough sweets, Michael Gove and Top Gear?
Spreadsheet Phil's speech sounds like a cross between the Duke of Wellington and Ken Dodd.What a complete walloper (not an "economicy" word)— Graham Laurie (@grahamlaurie1) November 22, 2017
Top Gear jokes and "big economicy words"... Is @PhilipHammondUK attempting to establish a new image as our dorky stepdad? It's just making me uncomfortable.— Rhys Handley (@RhysHandley2113) November 22, 2017
Why is Philip Hammond doing the budget like a best man's speech— Mollie Goodfellow (@hansmollman) November 22, 2017
The Chancellor announced part of the Budget as “the bit with the long economicky” words in it.
"This is the bit with the long economicy words in it". Oh grow up and get on with it. #Budget2017— David Burns (@DavidJamesBurns) November 22, 2017
For some, it looked like the Chancellor was being patronising as he referenced a Westminster story about Michael Gove.
A Times report suggested that Gove, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, had been “auditioning” for the role of chancellor by introducing “economicky” words into his briefings.
#budget2017 How will Hansard write 'economicy'?— Lynda Whitney (@LyndaWhitney) November 22, 2017
The Chancellor can choose to wash down his speech with an alcoholic tipple but he stuck with water.
And he had his comedy double act partner, aka Prime Minister Theresa May, to hand for a joke about cough sweets.
Cough sweets PM theatrically produces for her out-of-touch Chancellor won't kick start this lacklustre Budget from a failing Government #FitForTheFew— Richard Burgon MP (@RichardBurgon) November 22, 2017
Hammond jokes about cough sweets and with the comic timing of a mouse caught in the snap of a trap, May produces a box— Kevin Maguire (@Kevin_Maguire) November 22, 2017
This harks back to May’s Conservative Party conference speech in September when she struggled through with a cough and fading voice – though she did get a lozenge from the Chancellor.
PM has just given Hammond a pack of strepsils, that qualifies as top #budgetbantz, as does his gag at Gove's expense about teh 'long economicky words'— Laura Kuenssberg (@bbclaurak) November 22, 2017
Now she has returned the favour, offering him a box of Strepsils while at the Despatch Box. The lolz.
The nation's unlikeliest comedy double-act; Theresa May has brought Philip Hammond some cough sweets pic.twitter.com/oBUt7GRpf1— Philip Sim (@BBCPhilipSim) November 22, 2017
I laughed a little at the long economicky words line. I did not laugh at the cough sweets. #budget2017— Joanne Briggs (@miss_tilney) November 22, 2017
Also, strepsils being used for a joke during the budget, shouldn't we have had a product placement icon at the beginning of the programme? Have they done a deal with them? Someone have links to the company? Insider? #Budget2017— Beck (@NewFoundWings) November 22, 2017
As Hammond talked up support for electric vehicles, he made a joke at the expense of former Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson.
The Chancellor notes Jeremy Clarkson isn't keen on driverless cars as he jokes it's not the first time Clarkson has been snubbed by Hammond and May.— ElizabethArnold (@ebrep) November 22, 2017
Just seen Hammond's electric car/Top Gear joke. Got a bit of sick in my mouth. Is this the budget or a best man's speech? #Budget2017— Steevo (@steevo_15) November 22, 2017
Despite some people cringing at the delivery, others were applauding the Chancellor for trying to liven up proceedings.
Nice bit of lightheartedness during the budget with jokes about cough sweets & economicy-sounding words. Don’t really get the dislike people have for Hammond. He always comes across as a nice guy you could have a pint with!— Dr Anita Sharma (@ImAnitaSharma) November 22, 2017
Having banter when delivering the budget thy affects everyone I find absolutely tasteless! #Budget2017— ThatGuyTweets (@dr_bons) November 22, 2017
Budget props! May hands Hammond a pack of strepsils. Nice— Beth Rigby (@BethRigby) November 22, 2017
Ill judged - the budget is no laughing matter. The Chancellor should ‘cut’ sad jokes and pathetic banter. #Budget2017— Minersprog (@minersprog) November 22, 2017
It seems the fun never stops at HM Treasury…