The Great Debate UK
Some political observers fret over the paucity of policy initiatives emerging from Britain’s two main political parties ahead of a general election expected on May 6, as pre-election rhetoric turns its focus toward the possibility of a hung parliament.
Such a scenario raises fears of further economic instability if financial markets react badly to the uncertainty the result might bring to the political arena.
But Fraser Nelson, editor of the right-leaning Spectator magazine, promotes Conservative leader David Cameron as a candidate with strong ideas who is misunderstood by people who think that all he has done is made concessions to the Labour platform.
“If you look at the policies he’s introduced, you don’t really see that much blood-and-guts conservatism,” Nelson said in an interview with Reuters after a talk in London titled “Winning is Not Enough” hosted by the Centre for Policy Studies, arguing that Cameron has the potential to shake things up if he becomes prime minister.
Now that Gordon Brown has suffered his Damascene conversion and forced himself to utter the C word, all three UK parties are talking of how they will cut public spending if they get the chance.
The case for cuts appears to be overwhelming. This year the gap between government income and expenditure is projected to be 175 billion pounds, or 12.4 percent of GNP. For every 7 pounds it spends, the British government will need to borrow two; balancing the books would require slashing the equivalent of the entire education budget.