Sunday, 10 May 2015

The Tories - Either they were fast or they were lying

The Tories have already broken some kind of new world record but I can’t tell which one it is.

A mere two days before the General Election which tragically gave the UK a Tory (read ‘Nazi’) majority ‘government’, the Work and Pensions Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, refused to say where the £12 billion in cuts to the welfare budget would be coming from because “we would have to have done the work on it, that’s why, and we would have to have reached agreement as to exactly where those are”.  The inference being that no work had been done on where the cuts should be made in the welfare budget.

The full section of the debate is reproduced here (taken from

Asked to outline specific welfare cuts, he bleated: “As soon as we have done the work and had it properly modelled then we will let everybody know what that is.”

Shadow Minister Rachel Reeves slammed his response, saying: “People have a big choice to make in two days’ time.

"But it’s very difficult to make that choice when they don’t know what the choice is.”

Mr Duncan Smith was asked why it wasn’t “relevant” to explain where the axe would fall during BBC2’s Daily Politics welfare debate.

“Because we would have to have done the work on it, that’s why, and we would have to have reached agreement as to exactly where those are,” he said.

“Everyone is very clear that after the next election, you get a Conservative government - we have already said that we will save £12billion on essentially working-age benefits.

“The work that we do on this will be done in the Spending Review, and we will announce that.”

You can see the full debate here:

This was also the story given by virtually any Tory who was asked about the cuts to the welfare budget, cuts that will negatively affect the most vulnerable people in the UK including the disabled.

Imagine my surprise, then, when, mere hours into the new administration, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) published the Impact Assessment on the cuts to the Access to Work fund that helps people and employers cover costs of disabilities that might be a barrier to work.

Wow!  That’s some quick work.  Yes, the policy was mooted back in March but, surely, if that was one of the areas they were looking at, the voting public should have been told.  Even areas of debate regarding cuts should have been mentioned as potential areas for cuts especially a cuts to a fund like Access to Work that helps people with visual or auditory problems get into and stay in work.

It’s quite funny how the Impact Assessment, obviously commissioned by the Tories, states that “[Spending] has risen significantly over the past five years … One of the significant strategic questions we face is how to establish the right balance between the need to support as many disabled people as possible and what it is reasonable to offer individual users” whilst the Tories stated in their manifesto that although "last year alone, 140,000 disabled people found work" also says that "the jobless rate for this group remains too high.” The Tories pledged that "As part of our objective to achieve full employment, we will aim to halve the disability employment gap: we will transform policy, practice and public attitudes, so that hundreds of thousands more disabled people who can and want to be in work find employment".

Does cutting the fund to help people with visual and auditory impairments get work really help with their pledge to halve the disability employment gap?  I don’t think so.

The fact that an Impact Assessment could be published so quickly into the new administration means that work was already being done on where the cuts in the welfare budget were coming from, the Tories just didn’t want anyone to know before the election because it might have affected their chances of winning (assuming that the public had some kind of moral compass that states that it’s wrong to punish the weak).

So the world record has to be for the quickest piece of work ever done, shouldn’t it?  Or should that be for the quickest a lie has been uncovered following an election?  I can’t make my mind up on this.  Which do you think is the least naive answer?


  1. Did the Tories lie? Do bears poo in the woods?

  2. Did the Tories lie? Do bears poo in the woods?

  3. Of both, I have no doubt it saying, 'yes'!