Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Broken promises: six pledges / statements from the Conservative Party

The first six pledges or statements from the Tories that I have chosen are as follows:

1. You Tube statement from David Cameron (March 2007)
“At the absolute heart of the approach I want the Conservative Party to take is to put public services first and to give local people far more control over how their local area is run. And today I can announce that I am appointing, for the first time, a shadow minister with responsibility for Cornwall. Mark Prisk is a born and bred Cornishman. He went to school in Truro. He knows the Duchy extremely well and all of its different parts and variety and the people there. What I want is for him to listen to people in Cornwall, to understand their concerns, to get to grip with the issues and report back to me so that actually Cornwall is heard at the heart of the Shadow Cabinet and the heart of the Conservative Party, so that we can address the concerns that people have. I think the Labour Government has taken the South West for granted for far too long, and Cornwall almost completely ignored by the Government. I don’t want that to happen. I went to Cornwall during my leadership election and I will be back over the next coming months. And I think having Mark as a Minister with responsibility for Cornwall will be a great step to make sure that your voice is heard at the heart of Whitehall and we have policies which reflect the needs and aspirations of the people who live in Cornwall.”

MK Comment: The Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition Government has refused to appoint a Minister for Cornwall, and the Prime Minister’s pledge that Cornwall’s voice would be heard “at the heart of Whitehall” has been shown to be false.  The Coalition has legislated to create a Devonwall parliamentary seat and also has plans to introduce a “Pasty Tax” and regional pay.

2. Coast to Coast leaflet 6 (2009)
“It is dishonest to claim that we will cut police officer numbers. In fact, our plans to cut bureaucracy and red tape mean that there would be more police on the street, fighting crime and protecting local communities.” – shadow Home Secretary Nick Grayling

MK Comment: The Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition Government has cut funding for Devon and Cornwall Police by £47 million. Staffing numbers have already been cut by over 200 and it is anticipated that, by the end of the spending review period, there will be 700 fewer police officers within the “Devon and Cornwall” policing area. Recent figures also show that crime has risen within the force’s area.

3. Coast to Coast leaflet no. 6 (2009)
Cornwall already receives less per head for services such as education and health. We cannot afford to be cut back and in fact, here in Mid Cornwall, we need to make the case for increased investment in services and infrastructure.” – Caroline Righton, PPC for St Austell and Newquay

MK Comment: Investment in Cornwall has not been increased by the Coalition Government, and public services in Cornwall have suffered very significant cuts. For example, cuts in funding to Cornwall Council equates to a reduction in spend, over a four year period, of £490 million.

4. Mailshot from David Cameron (2009)
“Seven out of ten working people will be better off than under Labour, and nobody will be worse off.”

5. Letter from George Osborne (March 2010)
“Most importantly of all, we need to get the economy growing again. It is growth that will do most to get our economy moving. It is only when the economy is growing strongly again that we will be able to make real inroads into the huge debt that Labour have built up.”

MK Comment: Under the Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition, the economy has struggled. The depth and speed of Coalition spending cuts has further damaged the economy, and it has been confirmed that the United Kingdom has slipped back into recession – the first “double dip” recession in decades. Many thousands and thousands of people are worse off under David Cameron and George Osborne.

6. Statement from David Cameron on the campaign trail
“There will be no top-down reorganisation of the National Health Service.”

MK Comment: The Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition pushed the divisive Health and Social Care Bill through the House of Commons, ignoring unprecedented levels of opposition from nurses, midwives, GPs, doctors and ordinary people. 

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