There are days as a local reporter when you despair of spending your life covering the same stories over and over.
And there are other days – when you’re sitting in the House of Commons watching the Prime Minister taunt the Leader of the Opposition – that you think ‘actually, this isn’t a bad job’.
The topic in question was the ‘bedroom tax’ and David Cameron, having batted aside a question relating to its fairness, leaned towards Ed Milliband and asked if he would reverse the new policy should he get into power.
Worryingly for those opposed to the changes, Mr Milliband refused to say a word, even when coaxed by the PM: “This means yes and this means no” as he nodded and shook his head accordingly.
Amusing stuff for those in the public gallery but it did make you wonder whether the vocal opposition to the welfare reforms from the Labour corner had been little more than sound-bites for the benefit of a worried electorate.
Another subject which had been high on the radar for Crawley was that of Free Schools, which the PM spoke passionately to defend.
With one school – the Gatwick School – scheduled to open next year and another reeling from Ofsted’s decision to place it in special measures, what was the opinion of Crawley MP Henry Smith?
He said: “The Ofsted report into the Discovery New School is disputed and I would challenge that their different teaching method doesn’t neatly fit in to rigid national constraints. Two new schools for Crawley are good for local children and parents, offering extended choice.”
And what about the ‘bedroom tax’? How was it fair to penalise people when, even if they did want to move to a smaller home, there were not enough out there to accommodate them?
Henry referred to the ‘tax’ as a “levelling of the playing field” as people in the private sector “have had no extra benefits given to them if they want to live in a bigger home”.
He added: “I’m proud hundreds of new social houses are now being built in Crawley after almost nothing under the last Labour council and government.”
Reasoned answers from an MP finding his feet during his first term representing his town.
Who’d have thought that, days later, he would be insulting the President of Russia on Twitter? (See page 7) It’s a funny old world.