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Lib Dems offer advice to Labour on opposing Tory welfare cuts

by Iain Roberts on 22 July, 2015

21 Responses

  1. Phil Johnson says:

    What hypocracy. Mr Hunter consistently voted for benefit cuts in the last parliament.
    As for definitions, perhaps the party who finished 4th equal with 8 seats should look up “electability”.
    Hardly anywhere near to opposition.

  2. Hailifax says:

    Perhaps, and this may surprise you, the public , are not as opposed to welfare cuts as you think.

    Personally I’m not.

    I know that both the left wing press and the right wing press publish extremes that support their view, but the fact remains that £23k tax fee income + other benefits (free prescriptions, free school meals, free school uniforms etc, and no work expenses, such as bus fares), for doing nothing is more than many people earn

    • Iain Roberts says:

      If your view of politicians is just doing what the polls tell them is popular, we have different approaches.

      The changes being proposed by Osborne have very little to do with people who are paid for doing nothing. In fact, almost no-one is in that situation. If you are unemployed you are expected to spend the hours of a full time job looking for work.

      The reality is that these changes hit the young, the disabled and the working poor hardest. Which of those groups are you happy about making poorer, Halifax?

  3. David Maycock says:

    well said Phil, here we go again are we supposed to forget the Liberals were in bed with the Tories ?

  4. Iain Roberts says:

    Phil, David – the opposition are the people opposing the Government and yes, the Lib Dems are the opposition.

    No, we certainly shouldn’t forget that the Lib Dems were in Coalition! For example, we shouldn’t forget that the changes now being proposed by Osborne and being abstained on by Labour are changes that were *blocked* by the Lib Dems when we were in government. We stopped them happening.

    Think you might need to look elsewhere for your hypocrisy, Phil.

  5. Hailifax says:

    Iain you write ‘If your view of politicians is just doing what the polls tell them is popular, we have different approaches.’

    I know you approach is different, which is why you lost so many seats. Perhaps you need to think about that.

    And I’m not happy about making any particular target group poorer. The UK economy is in mess (we’re boring as a % of GDP more than Greece – yikes), and despite what Osborne tells us, has not recovered from Labour’s mismanagement.

    The economy desperately needs rebalancing and welfare has to be cutback (like it or not), I know your answer is probably to squeeze the bankers and anyone who is wealthy, but the problem with that is that they will probably leave and take their wealth with them! Given I choice I’d rather have 45% of something than 60% of nothing

  6. Iain Roberts says:

    Thanks for the electoral advice Halifax! (In reality the Lib Dems policies were the most popular in this election, but of course many people don’t vote on policies).

    I agree with rebalancing the economy, but not on the backs of the poor. Your view that we should punish the poor and not ask the rich to pay more simply because the rich might leave is one I find not only sad, but not in line with the evidence.

    We can do a great deal more to ask those with more money to pay their fair share and – while many might say they’ll leave – in reality few will. The reason is simply common sense: relocating a business or a family is a major upheaval in every sense, far more than paying a bit more tax.

    If only we could be a little braver, a little more willing to look at the evidence and not just punish the working poor, disabled and young people, we could balance the books fairly.

  7. Hailifax says:

    Iain – You wrong, it is so easy to relocate or leave. It is already happening in France.

    And your idea of fair and others is different. I’m not rich and never likely to be, but I can understand why someone who has worked hard all their lives, taken risks, would then resent given more than half of that to the state to, in some cases squander.

    Whilst personally not rich, one of my friends is now not to badly off, but they a few years ago they nearly lost everything for their business ( and I mean everything, and 30 years of hard work nearly wiped out), so I don’t resent them a penny.

  8. Hailifax says:

    Iain – I have got to challenge your statement in which you said ‘in reality the Lib Dems policies were the most popular in this election, but of course many people don’t vote on policies.

    How do you know they were the most popular? is it based on the same opinion polls that had a hung parliament?

    Your arrogance here is unbelievable, you are not only telling us that your policies were the most popular (despite the election result), but also that most people don’t vote on policies – Well I have news for you, I did, and everyone I know did

  9. bruce says:

    Why is Mark Hunter still shown on your leaflets – does he have any official position – if he doesn’t then why is he shown with people who do?

  10. Iain Roberts says:

    Bruce – can you point me to the rule that says we can’t mix people with official positions and people without in the same photo please? I’ve not come across that one before, but if it’s something I’ve missed, I’ll certainly take a look.

    • bruce says:

      I was merely asking a question – I believe that you cannot accept that the electorate voted him out of office .

      Iain – what do reckon about your new leader – haven’t seen much from the local party?

      • Iain Roberts says:

        Bruce – interesting theory on Mark but mistaken. We are, however, going to fight to win in 2020. Given the number of people who come up to me and tell me how sorry they are Mark lost and how poor their new MP seems in comparison, we may have a good chance.

        I think Tim’s going to be an excellent leader for the party – I supported him myself and I reckon he’s the right man for the job. Hopefully I’ll find a bit of time in the next few weeks to write a bit more about the Lib Dem leadership.

  11. bruce says:

    Mr Hunter would make a good councillor and 2020 is a LONG way off!

  12. Hailifax says:

    Iain – you have still not responded to my question, which was how do you know LibDem policies were the most popular? is it based on the same opinion polls that had a hung parliament?

    You have made a very bold statement, and I do not believe it is unreasonable for one of your constituents to ask you to explain it

  13. Phil Johnson says:

    Mr Hunter was in favour of the bedroom tax, against raising welfare benefits in line with prices, against paying higher benefits over longer periods to the sick and disabled, in favour of a reduction in spending on welfare benefits, against spending public money to create guaranteed jobs to long term youth unemployed.
    This looks like punishing the people you seek to protect?
    Surely th Official Opposition is the 2nd largest party in the House, not a minor party with the same number of seats as the DUP?
    Finally, Mary’s unpopularity appears to be amongst those who did not vote for her, and insist on bombarding her with questions on FGM and Foxhunting.

  14. Hailifax says:

    Phil – I have to correct the idea that it is a bedroom tax, as it is nothing of the sort. It is a reduction in benefit so that it reflects your needs, rather than you wants.

    For example if you require only a two bedroom property, and you choose to live in a three bedroom property, the housing benefit will only pay for two bedrooms. I can’t see why that is wrong. Further more, this has always (I think) been the case in the private rented sector, the changes were brought into social housing – thus making the private and the social sector equal.

    I work for a living, and would you consider subsiding me when my children grow up and leave as I would no longer need the size of house I have , or would you expect me to either carry on trying to fund it myself or downsize?

  15. Phil Johnson says:

    I agree Halifax.
    I was merely using the popular name.

  16. Iain Roberts says:

    Phil –

    The cuts currently being made by the Tories were opposed and blocked by the Lib Dems in government. We believed they went too far then and we still believe that.

    Regarding Mary Robinson, I’ve certainly had a much wider range of complaints than you suggest, but regardless I hope you’re not suggesting that it’s OK for an MP to ignore people who didn’t vote for her! When elected, the MP serves everyone, not just her supporters.

    Halifax – based on polling by one of the main polling companies.

  17. Hailifax says:

    Iain – “based on polling by one of the main polling companies”. – As I thought the same companies who though it would be a hung Parliament.

    I would suggest that experience would have taught you that it may be better to ignore those kind of polls, and perhaps concentrate your mind on the one that actually mattered.

  18. Phil Johnson says:

    According to “They Work For You”, Mr Hunter voted with the Conservatives on welfare cuts.
    No, I am suggesting that those who didn’t vote for her tried to discredit her with a bombardment of similar questions as soon as she was elected, and before she had time to find her feet. The feedback on her response times is now much better according to social network sites.

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