James Cleverly: Fiscal responsibility is an alien concept to Corbyn and McDonnell
The first in our General Election series, Conservative Chairman James Cleverly writes that as the party of homeownership, the Conservatives are determined to help as many people onto the property ladder as possible.
This election is the most important in my lifetime. The stakes are high and the choice is a simple one.
Boris Johnson and the Conservatives will get Brexit done and move the country forward. We will focus the horsepower of government on people’s priorities and take advantage of the opportunities that await us outside of the EU.
A Corbyn-led government - propped up by Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP – would subject the country to another two referendums. More division, dither and delay. Businesses and families prevented from taking decisions and moving on.
We are optimistic about Britain’s future and have an ambitious agenda for Government. We have outlined some of the exciting new policies we would implement should voters return a majority Conservative government on 12th December.
As the party of homeownership, we are determined to help as many people onto the property ladder as possible. To do this, we will build a million more homes in the next five years and introduce long-term, fixed-rate mortgages requiring a deposit of just 5 per cent. Under our First Home Scheme, homes will be sold at a 30 per cent discount to local first-time buyers.
But a secure place to call home cannot be the preserve of homeowners alone. With the number of people renting privately on the rise, we need to make sure the market works for them.
To empower renters, we will end no-fault evictions - removing the fear of being asked to leave a property at short notice - and introduce a lifetime rental deposit, meaning that renters will no longer have to save for their next deposit while their money is tied up in an old one.
We recognise the need to invest in the public services we all rely on, and unlike Labour, we know that a strong, free market economy must underpin and sustain them. Under the Conservatives, employment has reached record highs, unemployment has fallen to record lows and the economy has grown every year for nine years.
It is thanks to our strong economy that we have been able to announce the biggest ever funding boost for the NHS. We are putting 20,000 additional police officers on our streets and raising school funding by £14 billion, ensuring that every child receives the world-class education that they deserve.
And what would Corbyn offer us? As the recent debate made painfully clear, he has no plan for Brexit. Instead of showing leadership and getting on with doing what voters have already told us they want, he would subject the country to the chaos of two more referendums, u-turning on his promise to respect the 2016 result. All while British taxpayers continue to bankroll Brussels.
But we all know that fiscal responsibility is an alien concept to Corbyn and McDonnell, who would bring our economy to its knees. They would spend recklessly and collapse our economy, hitting ordinary families in the pocket. As the Director of the Institute of Fiscal Studies has made clear, the level of spending proposed by Labour cannot be funded by taxes on higher earners alone, meaning everyone will bear the cost of Corbyn. The upshot is that a Labour government would hike the taxes of hardworking people by over £2,400 a year.
The only way to move this country forwards, get Brexit done and deal with the real issues that make a difference to voters across the UK is with a stable, majority Conservative government. We will get Brexit done and build a brighter future for Britain.
James Cleverly is Chairman of the Conservative Party and Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Braintree.