What a mess we’re in. Normally I like to tell you things from behind the scenes or analysis that you don’t get from the news…but right now what you see is pretty much everything you need to know.
Let’s sum it up like this though. Just before she resigned as home secretary, a job she couldn’t have been more ill-suited to do, Suella Braverman told the Commons how much she loathed the ‘Guardina-reading, tofu-eating -wokearati’.
You heard that right. She sums up a sizeable wing of the Tory party that has spent a career in politics hating things. They hate migrants, people on benefits, university students, teachers, young people, nurses, doctors and, of course, experts.
That’s right, they’ve run out of people to hate so they’ve moved on to food groups.
I’m not, and neither is the Labour Party, getting bogged down in the current revolving door of chaos, only to say this: last week Boris Johnson was on holiday in the Caribbean. Parliament wasn’t on holiday, we were debating and voting on important issues like the economy and fracking. But Boris Johnson thought this was a good time to pop off for a beach holiday despite parliament being in recess for a month from mid-September.
The very fact Johnson would have been calling people up from a tropical beach saying ‘I want to be PM again will you support me’ should have told those Tory MPs everything they needed to know about how much he’s ‘changed’.
This just epitomises how incapable the Tories are of putting the country first. They are ungovernable and incapable of governing.
And that’s all you need to know. Over the summer when Labour released our cost of living policies and then had a flawless, focused and professional conference, that was the moment we left the Tories behind. Not because they’re so bad Labour is naturally doing well (the 2019 election taught us that isn’t inevitable), but because Labour is credible. Once again, we are capable of shouldering the weight of government and releasing policies that are bold enough to match the scale of the challenge, but not unrealistic.
Bold and sensible, that’s where Labour is and it makes me proud to say those words!
On the economy, we’d get the balance right between revenue generation and borrowing to invest. Labour, with Keir Starmer and Rachel Reeves directing our economic activity, will act responsibly and I hope you can see the work and care that goes into the announcements on the UK’s finances.
We’ll generate revenue to tackle the crisis via windfall tax. We’ll invest in breakfast clubs for kids and pay for it by ensuring private schools pay their fair share of tax. We’ll cancel the non-dom loophole and use the money to create more opportunities for those who need a break.
If Labour’s cost-of-living plan in August had been used you wouldn’t have paid a penny more for energy this winter. With this plan at our centre,  you can rest assured that we would stabilise the economy and then get cracking with the big challenge of getting it growing again. We’ll do that by investing to transform our economy via a £28bn fund that will transition our economy to become carbon-free; create a million new quality jobs; establish Great British Energy that’ll be a publicly owned low-carbon energy producer to help us double the on and offshore wind capacity, and kickstart new sources of renewables, transitioning to clean electricity by 2030.
And we’ll spend wisely. The Tories wrote off £14bn in fraud against the Treasury and didn’t burn billions of pounds of unusable PPE. We want that money back and would never treat public money with the flippancy of the Tories.
We’ve got the NHS staffing plan that’ll double the number of training places for doctors, nurses and midwives and create a new independent body that will forecast staffing needs and inform parliament so ministers can never again dodge the difficult decisions and hide future staffing problems from the public.
And with crime, we have a plan to reinvent community policing for the 2020s and beyond by introducing police hubs to those communities in need and to protect children with a new criminal offence to target adults that involve children as part of their criminal activity with a ten-year sentence. We’re also changing the guidance to police to ensure the safety of women and children takes a higher priority.
You deserve better and we’re working our socks off to be ready for government the second the opportunity comes around.
People keep asking how we can have an election. It’s hard to point to the mechanism that’ll deliver an election soon but if the public demand it vehemently enough then it will happen. We had three elections in four years from 2015, so don’t let anyone tell you it can’t happen!
Once again I’m sorry that politics is so unedifying, but I can promise you that loads of us in Labour are giving this everything we’ve got, working flat-out because our community and our country need it.
I’ve been really busy locally too – I’ll post more updates on that in the coming days but thought it was time for a political update! Hope you’re all having a lovely weekend.
The House of Commons Chamber
The House of Commons Chamber
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