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Good morning. Rishi Sunak, the chancellor, will be delivering his spending review this afternoon and he will be hoping it turns out to be more robust than most of the other big financial announcements he has made this year. On 11 March, when he presented his budget, he announced spending worth £12bn to help businesses cope with coronavirus. Less than a week later those plans were effectively in tatters and he was back announcing a support package of loans and grants worth £350bn. That pattern has been repeated several times this year. Ensuring that economic policy stays ahead of events has turned out to be near impossible.
That is why the spending review has been scaled back already. Originally it was meant to determine government spending for the next three years (which is normal for a spending review). Instead it is largely going to be a one-year review because, with so much uncertainty about what the economy will look like next year, making long-term plans would be rash.
One of my favourite quotes of his [Murthy’s] is: ‘In God we trust, but everyone else needs to bring data to the table.’ It’s something I try to live by as well. You know, I’m always interested in getting the data; getting the facts.
The Conservatives’ irresponsible choices have wasted and mismanaged billions, led to our country experiencing the worst downturn in the G7, and created a jobs crisis.
Whether it’s building starter homes or garden bridges, this prime minister and his government talk a good game. But they haven’t delivered on their promises – and regional inequality has got worse under their watch.