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Column: The Conservatives have given up on governing

At the Conservative Party Conference, Rishi Sunak promised change, but in his first (and hopefully his last) King’s Speech, all he offered was more failure and decline.

After thirteen years of power, the Conservative’s legacy is stagnant growth, sky-rocketing mortgages, crumbling schools and hospitals and a continuing cost-of-living crisis.

The Tories have shown that they are simply out of touch with the realities facing ordinary people and clueless about the direction a modern Britain should be heading.

Once again, the Conservatives have decided to grant more licenses to drill for oil and gas in the North Sea. This does nothing to help fight the climate crisis or help those facing massive energy bills. Even the Energy Secretary doesn’t think this will bring down bills!

Only Labour can bring down energy bills once and for all, by investing in homegrown power that we can control. We will make the UK a clean energy superpower, harnessing the green revolution and bring jobs and investment to communities like Wakefield.

This could include over 19,000 jobs in Yorkshire and the Humber, upgrading homes as part of our warm homes plan. Labour will also establish Great British Energy to create clean and cheap homegrown power which will also provide us with the energy security we need.

The Tories object to GB Energy, because they don’t believe we need public ownership of energy. However, the truth is we already do! They are owned, or part-owned by the likes of EDF, Vattenfall, Ørsted and Statkraft. The Tories obviously thinks it is ok for state-run companies to invest in Britain, so long as they are not British state-owned companies; let French, Swedish, Danish and Norwegian citizens get the wealth from our energy industry, just not British citizens.

It was also disappointing that despite talking up plans to regenerate our towns, there were no concrete legislative plans to make this a reality.

Rather than provide proper investment, the Tories’ track record includes Hunger Games style funding pots, pitting town against town and local services cut to the bone.

Only Labour has a real plan to rejuvenate our town centres. We’ll scrap business rates and replace them with a fairer system making Britain the best place to start and grow a business and make towns and cities like Wakefield flourish.

The King’s Speech is meant to be the pinnacle of the parliamentary calendar with a hefty legislative agenda to enact change and project the vision for the country going forward.

This King’s Speech did none of that. There was nothing for Wakefield, Horbury and Ossett. Nothing to tackle the cost-of-living. Nothing to make the UK a clean energy superpower. Nothing to help our town centres. And Nothing to give people confidence in our police and criminal justice system.

Last year the people of Wakefield called for change when they elected me as their MP. This government’s meagre King’s Speech shows they have given up on governing. Now, they are even reverting to previous Prime Ministers in a desperate attempt to steady the sinking ship.

We desperately need a Labour government to get Britain’s future back. Call a General election.


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