- Green target delay will raise cost of living, Sunak warned.
- Ministers set to face legal challenge if northern leg of HS2 scrapped.
- Delays to end of ‘no-fault’ evictions opens up rift among Conservatives.
- Rough sleeping target missed.
- School cooking ‘revolution’ to tackle obesity is shelved.
- Activists decry Braverman’s call to change refugee treaties.
Yesterday was a bad day for the Tories. A hundred economic experts from around the world called on Sunak to reverse his U-turn on net zero because it would drive up the cost of living and leave the UK trailing behind other countries in the race to build a green economy.
Two ex PMs, Cameron and Johnson, attacked plans to cancel or delay the Manchester leg of HS2. They were joined by Tory MPs worried about losing their ‘red wall’ seats in the north and George Osborne, whose Northern Powerhouse Partnership would join any legal challenge to the decision, along with the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham.
Following meetings between the National Residential Landlords Association and government representatives at Number 10, the Conservative Manifesto pledge to end ‘no fault’ section 21 evictions has been delayed, yet again, amid fears that it could be dropped like net zero. No such meetings have been offered to tenants’ groups like Generation Rent.
Another manifesto pledge, to end rough sleeping by next year, will not be met, according to the Kerslake Commission. The cost of living crisis is making more people homeless. 104,510 households are in temporary accommodation and the number of rough sleepers had increased by a quarter, to 3,069, in autumn last year. This year’s figure is expected to be higher. The Kerslake Commission was set up by the government to report on the lessons learned from getting rough sleepers into accommodation during Covid. But they found that government cuts to funding for the homeless when lockdowns ended had undermined the agencies seeking to work together to end this scandal forever.
A government plan to fund ‘a school cooking revolution’ has been scrapped and the money returned to the Treasury without a penny being spent since it was announced in February 2022. So school charities like Chefs in School and School Food Matters will have to carry on without government funding.
Suella Braverman suggested changing international treaties like the Refugee Convention, which enshrine the rights of Refugees in law, rights which the Tories would like to take away. Again it is charities, this time Care 4 Calais and Refugee Action, that are leading the opposition.
So, on a bad news day for the Tories, the opposition was coming from fellow Tories, charities and a commission set up by the government! Where was the Labour Party in all this? Where were the speeches defending healthy eating in schools, the homeless or refugees? Who was promoting a green industrial revolution to meet climate change and deriding the government’s mishandling of HS2, which has seen slow progress and spiralling costs? Who are those enriching themselves despite failing to deliver?
All we have had are empty campaign slogans and a series of photo ops for Starmer, Reeves and Lammy on their European tour. They should be voicing our anger and frustration with the Tories for trashing the country to enrich themselves. Instead they give voice to their own ambitions while silencing the voice of socialism within the Labour Party.
Just to be fair, in case the mainstream media were failing to report the Labour Party’s opposition to the Tories accurately, I searched the Labour Party and Starmer’s Xitter feed for the last week. They swore undying loyalty to the USA and promised to be open with our European neighbours while closing our borders and ending ‘Asylum Hotels’ (sic and sicker) to save the taxpayer money. Apart from that there was nothing. It is time to get serious about socialism and forget the fantasy politics coming from Labour.