Following some truly catastrophic local election results for the two parties of the coalition government, both David Cameron and Nick Clegg claimed that they would learn lessons from their various defeats.
The perfect opportunity for Cameron and Clegg to demonstrate which lessons they have learnt presented itself on Wednesday last week, when the Queen opened Parliament and delivered a speech that outlined exactly what the Government’s priorities are for the next year.
This should have been a Queen’s speech that put building an economy for working people centre stage but instead it offered no change and no hope. Energy bills, water bills, the cost of getting to work and jobs – these are the issues that are worrying families in Oldham East and Saddleworth, but the Government has absolutely nothing to say about them. In its deafening silence the Government demonstrates how utterly out of touch it is with the real needs of hard-working people.
Two years of Tory government has resulted in a recession made in Downing Street and this is why they had such a disastrous showing in the local elections. There was a lesson to be learnt from last week’s local election results but the Tories and Lib Dems failed to listen. The Queen’s Speech was an opportunity for the Government to outline a positive agenda for jobs and growth, but it was an opportunity missed.
Labour won’t make the same mistake. People in Oldham and Saddleworth want to see more jobs for young people, real action to tackle rip-off prices and help for individuals and families struggling with the rising cost of living. To tackle these issues we have outlined several policies that would help people right now including forcing energy companies to offer elderly people the lowest rate available, a tax on bank bonuses to fund 100,000 jobs for young people and new powers to stop rip-off surcharges by banks and airlines.
The Tories and their Lib Dem allies are out-of-touch with the real needs of people in this country – it’s time for them to focus on creating jobs, getting our economy moving again and helping hard-working people right now.