29 June 2022 – today’s press releases

  • Fraud industry booming on the Conservatives’ watch
  • Independence Isn’t the Answer to Westminster Overreach
  • Defence spending facing £1.7 billion cut by 2025

Fraud industry booming on the Conservatives’ watch

Responding to UK Finance’s Annual Fraud Report, showing total fraud losses up 8% to £1.3bn in 2021, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Alistair Carmichael MP said:

On the Conservatives’ watch, the fraud industry is booming. Criminal gangs are lining their pockets at the expense of innocent, often vulnerable people.

People need far better protection from these vile fraudsters, but the Government is leaving them to fend for themselves. Boris Johnson and Priti Patel want to simply pretend the problem doesn’t even exist.

It’s heartbreaking to see people losing their life savings because Ministers are failing to act.

Liberal Democrats are demanding a far stronger response from the Government, police, regulators, internet companies and banks, working together to prevent fraud, support victims and catch the perpetrators.

Independence Isn’t the Answer to Westminster Overreach

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have rejected Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price’s call for an independence referendum in Wales. Adam Price made the call in response to the Nicola Sturgeon’s proposals to hold a second Scottish independence referendum.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have stated while they are vehemently against the latest power grab by Westminster and the Conservative’s sustained attacks on devolution, independence would only bring division and chaos, hurting the poorest hardest.

Commenting Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds MS said:

It seems that Plaid Cymru has learned nothing from the years of division and chaos that resulted from the Brexit referendum.

While I am in full agreement with the outrage over Westminster’s latest power grab an independence referendum would only bring more division to an already divided country and take away focus from more pressing political issues.

We have already seen the huge amount of damage the breakup of one union has done to Wales, we don’t want to see this replicated on an even bigger scale. Independence, like Brexit would hurt the poorest in Welsh society the hardest.

It is extremely out of touch for Plaid Cymru to propose this referendum now, when people are struggling to make ends meet. We saw with the Brexit debate and the Scottish independence debates that referendums not only divide the public, but also suck all the energy out of everyday politics.

We need to be focusing on the cost-of-living crisis, ambulance waiting times and lifting children out of poverty. We cannot afford to be distracted, especially at a time when barely 1 in 5 people support independence.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats will continue to fight for a federal UK whereby Wales will have the powers it needs without the damage independence would cause to our economy and wellbeing.

Defence spending facing £1.7 billion cut by 2025

Defence spending faces savage real-terms cuts of £1.7 billion over the next three years, new research commissioned by the Liberals Democrats has revealed.

The analysis from the House of Commons Library forecasts that the Ministry of Defence budget will be eroded by soaring inflation, leading to a 5.6% real terms cut to day-to-day spending by 2024/25.

It means day-to-day defence spending will fall in real terms from £31.5 billion in 2021/22 to £29.9 billion in 2024/25.

This amounts to a cut of £1.7 billion over three years, £900 million of which will take place next year.

The real-terms cut to defence spending comes as the Conservatives admit they are on course to break a manifesto commitment to increase the defence budget in line with inflation, marking yet another broken promise by Boris Johnson.

Liberal Democrat Defence Spokesperson Jamie Stone MP said:

The Conservatives are playing fast and loose with our armed forces with these real terms cuts.

Soaring inflation risks gutting our defence spending, undermining our ability to stand with our allies in Europe and around the world.

National security must be of the utmost importance for any Government. In the face of the threat posed by Vladimir Putin, I urge the Conservatives to reverse the armed forces cut immediately.

Commenting, newly elected Liberal Democrat MP and former Army Major Richard Foord said:

The Conservatives claim to support our armed forces, yet they are stripping back defence spending at this critical time.

They’re inflicting real terms cuts of £1.7bn, adding yet another broken manifesto pledge to their pile of discarded promises.

At this dark moment, we should be investing in defence, not neglecting our armed forces. Liberal Democrats will reverse these misguided cuts and back our troops.

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This entry was posted in News and Press releases.
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2 Comments

  • Ben Wallace – the Defense Secretary, made a surprising comment in a BBC radio interview earlier in the week, whilst he welcomed the commitment made by the Government to increase defence spending, he was under no illusion that the Government would stick to its previous commitment to maintaining real-terms defence spending ie. a budget increase in line with inflation wasn’t going to happen.

    Given all the things that need investment, it does seem the 1970’s are closer than many would like to believe…

  • Peter John Hirst 4th Jul '22 - 4:06pm

    Similar comments apply to Scotland and would make the reunification of Ireland less appealing. Devolving sufficient powers to them would enable them to continue to prosper under the UK banner. Voting for change for the sake of it is much less likely than one for obvious pragmatic and ideological reasons.

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