LDV readers split on Nick’s talk of need for “savage” cuts

A week ago, Lib Dem Voice asked our readers the question on everyone’s lips at conference: Do you think Nick Clegg was right to say that the Lib Dems need to be “quite bold, or even savage, on current spending”?

I was clear on my view:

I cannot see how the talk of “savage” cuts is helpful – quite simply, it’s not the language of Lib Dems. Just as importantly, it’s not backed up by policy proposals. Even Vince Cable has so far come up with some £14 billion of potential savings, while estimating that a total of £112 billion will be needed over the course of the next Parliament.

In reality, it will almost certainly require a combination of spending cuts and tax rises even to prevent the UK’s ballooning deficit from getting more gargantuan still. We don’t need “savage” spending cuts any more than we need ‘steep’ tax rises (except perhaps on the very wealthiest who currently evade many of the taxes which hit the poorest hardest).

LDV’s readers were split, the majority (53%) marginally agreeing with my verdict that Nick’s remarks were unhelpful – but a very sizeable minority (47%) differed, arguing that Nick was exactly right to be delivering this wake-up call. In answer to LDV’s poll question, you said:

47% (143 votes) – Yes, Nick was delivering a much-needed wake-up call given the state of the national finances
53% (162) – No, this kind of language is unhelpful, and doesn’t reflect the Lib Dems’ fiscal policies
Total Votes: 305; Poll ran 21-26 Sept 2009.

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This entry was posted in Conference and Voice polls.
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One Comment

  • Cllr Patrick Smith 28th Sep '09 - 10:04pm

    Nick Clegg and Vince Cable have been leading the Country out of the recession with progressive reforming policies that shed a clear beacon of light on the `Liberal Moment’ that surely will now dawn in 2010 if there is unity and ambition to help the worst off.

    Nick Clegg has stated `Fair taxes are a prerequisite for a fair society and that is why they are at the top of my agenda for social reform.L/D`s have put forwrd a plan to cut taxes for people on low and middel incomes and to allow pensions to claim their full tax free income up to £10,000,by closing `loopholes’ and by ensuring polluters and the very wealthy pay their fair share’

    Under Labour or the Tories there is the same impact on the worst off 4 million people working families, that remains where the wealthy get better off and pay,education opportunities,health and voting inequalities get bigger across Britain.

    This situation with only change by supporting a resurgence of empowerment for the citizen and voting Liberal Democrat.

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