Sunday, 15 February 2015

For hardworking people

The Conservative Party stands for all hardworking people. In the wake of a debate that’s been raging this week in Westminster about tax, several commentators seem to be questioning this. To a large extent I have let the debate itself go over my head. From what little I saw, it seems to be about tax avoidance (which, as opposed to the crime of tax evasion, is legal). Plus, I’ve now seen reports appearing to show those that those that started the debate have benefited from tax avoidance themselves. I have just had to pay my quarterly gas bill. To my eyes, this latest manufactured political game of pot kettle black is trivial by comparison. However, what I do not find trivial is the attempt to attack the motives of the party I support. Conservatives support business because it’s the best way to support hardworking people.

When so many are desperate for the security of a regular pay packet, Conservatives have a duty to support businesses to ensure they create and keep jobs in Britain. I am fortunate enough to be one of the record 30.8 million people in work in our country[1]. However, we all know how quickly the situation could change. If Britain’s businesses fall into difficulty, or foreign businesses stop investing in our country, our jobs and our ability to meet our obligations and get on in life would be at risk. The Government has a duty to do everything it can to stop that happening. Being pro-business is the only way to help hardworking people find and keep jobs. In the circumstances in which we find ourselves, building a good relationship with businesses is the right thing for the Government to do.

Conservatives are pro-business because we are pro-employment, people need jobs and only businesses can provide them. Almost two million new jobs have been created in our country since David Cameron became Prime Minister. That means there are almost two million more Britons secure in the knowledge that they can provide for themselves and their families. Government spending is paid for by our taxes, so government cannot employ everybody. If everyone worked for government there would be no new tax money coming in. Government would be trying to pay itself and that does not work.

Conservatives want businesses to be successful because a strong economy means strong public services. Without the money that businesses bring to the British economy, both by paying taxes and employing people who pay taxes, we could not afford the public services we treasure. There would be less money to invest in schools, in hospitals, in providing a secure retirement for Britain's elderly. In a globally competitive world, where billions of pounds can move across oceans by pressing a button on a keyboard, we cannot afford to be anti-business. We need the money of the global business community to come to Britain, not leave Britain, because we need that money to spend on building a secure and better future for our people.

The whole point of having a long term economic plan, and the reason why supporting businesses forms part of it, is because Conservatives understand people want a secure future and we want to deliver it. We know that people want to protect our public services and we share those values.  One of the key ways we can do those things is by supporting businesses, so that Britain has a strong economy that can pay for strong schools and hospitals. Conservatives back business so that we can back the hardworking British people.

[1] ONS, UK Labour Market January 2015, 21 January 2015, link