Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Labour doing a Ratners on Tax

I have just seen the details of the concessions made by the Government to 'compensate' people who have lost out on their tax policy. It has descended into a complete farce.

The abolition of the 10p rate was designed to help Labour win the election that never was. Now this by-election budget is designed to help them cling on to Crewe in next week’s vote. The Chancellor is desperately trying to backtrack from the disastrous decisions of the Prime Minister but has still hasn’t managed to get it right.

Surely it would be better to admit they were wrong and put things back to how they were, yes it would be a U-Turn, yet if they came clean and admitted they had made a mistake, something the entire country knows anyway, they may be able to claw back some respect. Figures I have seen show that this u-turn leaves 1.1 million of the lowest paid workers losing up to £100 each.

The chart I have included shows that only a small proportion of those affected by the removal of the 1op tax band will be compensated. 1.1 million people earning between just over £6,500 and £12,800 will still lose out.

The whole thing has been a total disaster for Labour hitting hardest those that are their core vote. An act of political suicide comparable to 'Ratners Jewelry'.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Great Result for Lib-Dem's across the country.

We did not have elections this year in Warwick & Leamington, though I have been greatly encouraged by the results across the country and especially closer to home in places like Stratford where we gained 5 seats from the Conservatives.

Russell Field in Coventry was elected back onto Coventry City Council after a hard fought battle in one of Labour’s top targets. I am not sure whether the local Labour party wheeling in Gordon Brown at one stage was more help to Russell.

I’m especially pleased with these results in particular as I took the decision to pause our own campaigning and lead some teams into these areas to lend a hand.

Across the country we had a challenge; the seats we were defending had been won in 2004 when we received a large anti-war protest vote. I know that at Lib-Dem HQ it was felt that to hold our position would have been a good result. So a net gain of 34 councillors, taking control of one addition council, holding Liverpool against a massive and at times dirty Labour campaign and winning 3 seats on the London Assembly is cause for celebration. Pushing Labour's share of the vote into third place demonstrates just how much Labour have lost touch with their core supporters.

Though its not just about winning seats, the whole point of Politics is to care for our communities, stand up for our values and maintain a sense of social responsibility. For all our newly elected councillors who have worked hard to win their seats, that is something I know they will put just as much into.

Full details of the result can be found on the BBC website.