£1.5bn to prop up ‘out of ideas’ May
Listening to last week’s Queen’s speech, it is clear Theresa May is a prime minister under pressure and out of ideas.
It was a legislative programme that was more notable for the things that were left out than the things that were put in.
Gone are the unpopular policies of the Conservative manifesto such as scrapping the pension triple lock and ending free school meals in England.
There was no mention of grammar schools, the controversial ‘dementia-tax’ or plans to hold a free vote on fox hunting.
Once again, the Tories have found themselves on the wrong side of one of their own election slogans.
As the Chancellor shook the “magic money tree”, we learned that the true cost of keeping Theresa May in a job will be £1.5 billion.
That investment for Northern Ireland is welcome, but if the Conservatives profess to be a government for the whole of the United Kingdom, it is time they start acting like it by freeing up investment for Scotland, England and Wales.
If money can be found to keep the government in power, it can also be found to reverse the politics of austerity that have impacted on our communities for far too long.
As the Conservative manifesto fades into irrelevance, it is Labour under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership that continues to offer the only opportunity for progressive change across the whole of the UK.
I am looking forward to working with my Labour colleagues in this parliament to stand up for that progressive change and to fight this constituency.
In a busy first few weeks, I have had the pleasure of addressing Edinburgh Pride, attending ‘Live at Livvies’ in Blantyre and Summerfest in Cambuslang.
This weekend, I will be holding advice surgeries and joining Monica Lennon MSP and the local community in Hillhouse to host a Marie Curie Tea Party raising vital funds for the charity.
In these turbulent political times, it is always inspiring to meet so many people who are passionate about their causes and communities and I hope to continue meet and hear from as many local people as I can.
That is why, over the summer, I will be joining James Kelly MSP in writing to residents across Rutherglen and Cambuslang to offer every household a joint home visit.
I hope it will be a good opportunity for local people to share views and concerns and to demonstrate my commitment to being an open and accessible MP and I look forward to hearing more about the priorities of people in the two towns to help shape and inform the work I do for our area in parliament and in the community.
Old foesTheresa May and Jeremy Corbyn before last week’s Queen’s speech to parliament