A gaffe from Tory mayoral candidate Boris Johnson reduced Labour MPs to helpless laughter and prompted protests in the Commons.
It was triggered after Mr Efford (Eltham) noted archly that Mr Johnson had made scant contribution to the debate.
“The candidate for the mayoral seat for the Conservative Party doesn’t seem to have a view on any of this,” he remarked.
Rising swiftly, Mr Johnson observed: “Anything that encourages more cooperation and consultation between the mayor and the boroughs is a good thing.”
Heckled by Mr Efford that he didn’t know what was being discussed, he added: “I think everybody in this House wants to see a mayoralty that responds to the wishes of local communities and works with the boroughs and not against them in imposing planning decisions that go against the wishes of locally elected politicians.”
Local Government Minister John Healey riposted: “Welcome to the debate. We missed your contribution and your presence in previous sections.
“Can I also say you are speaking in fact to the next group of amendments – we are talking about housing strategy and health, but we will come on to planning next.”
It’s all fun and games, but it doesn’t exactly indicate that Johnson is really serious about the job, does it?