Jeremy Corbyn’s election pitch to voters yesterday contained more than £1trillion in spending commitments, the Tories claimed.
The Labour leader made a series of announcements, including sweeping renationalisation of major industries and an end to tuition fees.
Conservative co-chairman James Cleverly said the cost would be £1.4trillion over five years, and warned that it would ‘bankrupt’ the economy.
Jeremy Corbyn’s plans, announced in this speech in Northamptonshire yesterday, would cost more than £1.4tn, the Tories claimed last night
The Tories said Labour’s nationalisation plans – including railways, water companies and the National Grid – would cost £176billion, while establishing a state-owned bank would cost £500billion.
Among Labour’s plans, scrapping benefit caps and other welfare reforms would cost £27billion, setting up state-owned wind farms would be £79billion and getting rid of tuition fees £140billion.
Tory co-chairman James Cleverly said Mr Corbyn’s plans risked ‘bankrupting the country’
Mr Cleverly said: ‘Corbyn would trash the hard work and sacrifice people have put in to getting our economy on track.
‘Just like Labour always do, they will bankrupt our economy, meaning job losses and no money for public services.
‘Corbyn promises the world, but all Labour will deliver is years more confusion, delay and indecision while they argue over what to do on Brexit.’
A Labour spokesman said: ‘This was clearly put together by someone who paid as little attention to Labour’s announcements as they did to maths classes at school.’
He was like a jobbing actor whose heart wasn’t in it: HENRY DEEDES sees Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn set out his election stall
Jeremy Corbyn used the slogan ‘we’re ready’ to lay out Labour’s stall for the next general election
Readers of a certain vintage will probably remember Today, the now-defunct newspaper which was born amid breathless fanfare in the mid-Eighties.
It was marketed under the slogan ‘We’re ready’.
Yet when launch-day came, it was anything but.
The photos were blurred, the print wonky and the staff’s computers crashed so many times that the racing editor at one point headbutted the screen.
I contemplated this flagrant misnomer yesterday when Jeremy Corbyn used the same slogan to lay out Labour’s stall for the next general election.
He was in Northamptonshire to deliver what he termed his ‘alternative Queen’s Speech’ ahead of Monday’s State Opening of Parliament.
‘We’re ready,’ he announced. However, there appeared an almost majestic unreadiness about his trumpeted readiness.
For he gave a performance utterly devoid of enthusiasm.
Like a jobbing actor whose heart was not in the role, everything about his mood, his delivery and his body language screamed routine.
The party leader was welcomed on to the stage in Northampton by Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott
Participants in police line-ups appear more dynamic.
Our venue was Northampton Saints’ rugby ground. Corbyn said he had inquired at reception if the team might consider giving him a try-out.
‘Sadly they told me I was too old,’ he chirped.
You really have to wonder about someone whose gags are as duff as this.
His warm-up act had been Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott.
When she welcomed her boss on stage, you could almost see flinty sparks fly between the pair.
Like Richard Burton and Liz Taylor between marriages.
Taking his place at the lectern wearing what appeared to be a new tie – one of those ultra skinny ones favoured by New Romantic bands such as Spandau Ballet – he accused Boris Johnson of abusing the Queen by getting her to deliver a party broadcast on behalf of the Tories next Monday.
As an avowed republican, Jezza’s concern for Her Majesty always rings slightly hollow.
Taking his place at the lectern he accused Boris Johnson of abusing the Queen by getting her to deliver a party broadcast on behalf of the Tories next Monday
He then lifelessly rattled through a programme for government which he claimed would be the ‘most transformative, radical and exciting programme ever put before the British electorate’.
What we actually got was 30 minutes of undiluted economic nonsense. The content is now almost routine.
None of the proposals were new. I have sat through the same speech seven or eight times this year, though it becomes no less terrifying with each hearing.
Familiar policy followed familiar policy. At the heart of it was Corbyn’s grand vision – his giant renationalisation programme to grab rail, mail, water and energy delivery back into public ownership, ‘run by and for the public, not for profit’.
In some ways one has to marvel at the insouciance with which Corbyn announces these ground-shifting measures which some analysts say would cost £176billion.
He makes securing a pint of milk sound a more complicated transaction.
There’d be freebies galore, of course. Free bus travel for under-25s, bus passes for pensioners, an increase in the minimum wage for all workers from the age of 16.
Spend, spend, spend. He made Sixties pools winner Viv Nicholson seem penny-pinching.
Margaret Thatcher once observed that the trouble with socialism is ‘eventually you run out of other people’s money.’ And there lies the rub.
Mr Corbyn rattled through a programme for government which he claimed would be the ‘most transformative, radical and exciting programme ever put before the British electorate’
Mr Corbyn is very good at telling us how he’s going to spend our dosh but mute on how he’s going to raise any more.
There wasn’t a single strategy for creating wealth. If I hadn’t known better, it was as though he’d left several pages of his speech back in his car.
He finished with a lecture on climate change, which Labour are counting on as a ‘yoof’ vote-winner.
He paid tribute to Extinction Rebellion, those skanky harbingers of apocalypse whose grasp of basic economics is even more cock-eyed than Corbyn’s.
Jezza thanked them for ‘educating us’ on what he calls the ‘climate crisis’.
I might point out these protesters have been camped outside my office in Parliament all week.
From my eyrie, the sum of their activities these past four days has been to sing, dance and leave a trail of mess for others to clear up.
If this is Labour’s idea of ‘education’, we’re in even more trouble than I first thought if there is ever a Corbyn government.