Tuesday 4 December 2007

Dodgy Donors Scandal Masks Business as Usual for Brown's New Labour

I am the campaign trail again this week, speaking at meetings in Nottingham, Newcastle, Southampton and Liverpool, as well as convening mass meetings in my constituency protesting against the expansion of Heathrow airport. So I haven't had much time to blog let alone sleep.

Whilst the media has been dominated by the coverage of the dodgy donors story the usual business of New Labour goes on almost unnoticed. In just one week the Brown administration has effectively gutted the new Housing Bill of any hope of implementing Labour Party conference policy of tackling our housing crisis by restoring the role of local councils in building council houses. We have also learnt in recent days that the Government is now poised to prevent failed asylum seekers from accessing health care.

In the same week a succession of independent reports have also exposed the neglect and abuse our elderly people now face in the largely privatised care homes. Later this week PCS members in the Department of Work and Pensions are out on a two day strike, furious at the way in which they are bei9ng treated by the Government with wages and job cuts. To round the week off dire warnings are now echoing round the serious financial press explaining that the economic miracle manufactured by Gordon Brown by allowing personal borrowing and house prices to let rip is moving into at best a downturn and possibly a major recession.

The reason the Tories have made advances in the polls has nothing to do with the policies they are advocating or even the Cameron imagemaking. It is because people who supported us in 1997 to get rid of the Tories and who have stuck with us through three elections are running out of patience. Like many of us Labour Party members, they know that after 10 years of a Labour Government it just shouldn't be like this.