Vote Tomorrow (even if you don’t know what for)

In preparation for tomorrow’s general election, I had been planning a spin-free comparison of the key policy differences between the main parties. A simple list of how much each party would spend or cut in what areas, what laws they would change and such like.

Unfortunately, this has proved very difficult and in many cases impossible. And that’s because none of the parties have actually said what they’re going to do. Their manifestos lack even the most fundamental details of how they would allocate money.

The Conservatives, for example, are planning the greatest reduction in spending of the main parties but the policies they detail in their manifesto would result in a net increase in spending. In other words, they’ve told us about the good stuff but not the bad.

Similarly, one of the Labour Party’s key strengths is supposed to be the NHS but they don’t actually say how much they would spend on it. They also detail all the give aways in their manifesto and few of the take-backs.

And before this makes you run off to UKIP or back to the Lib Dems, none of the other parties are any better.

I don’t agree with Russell Brand’s conclusion that people shouldn’t vote but, for anyone intending not to do so, this deliberate obfuscation by all parties is probably reason enough. It is a disservice to democracy and to the parties’ shame.

Still, despite claims that they’re all the same and you can’t fit a cigarette paper between them, there are significant differences between them that will have a huge impact on our country and I believe it is our duty to vote. Even if we don’t know entirely what for.

Anyway, I have managed a few policy comparisons which are below.

(I shouldn’t lay all the blame on political parties for the sparsity of information below – if I had more time, I’d have done more).

Happy voting!

Tim.


 

Comparison of Parties’ 2015 Manifesto Policies

Will they hold an EU referendum?

 Party Policy Notes
Labour No Unless treaty change.
Conservatives Yes In 2017.
Liberal Democrats No
UKIP Yes In 2015.
Greens Yes But pro Europe.
SNP No

 

 

How would they set income tax?

 Party Bands Rates
Labour £0 – £10.8k

£10.8k – £11.1k

£11.1k – £41k

£41k – £150k

Over £150k

0%

10%

20%

40%

50%

Conservatives £0 – £12.5k

£12.5k – £50k

£50k – £150k

Over £150k

0%

20%

40%

45%

Liberal Democrats £0 – £12.5k

£12.5k – £41k

£41k – £150k

Over £150k

0%

20%

40%

45%

 

 

What is their Minimum Wage?

Rate from October 2015: £6.70

Party Policy Notes
Labour £8 By 2020.
Conservatives £6.70 No change.
Liberal Democrats £6.70 No change.
UKIP £6.70 No change.
Greens £10 By 2020.
SNP £8.70 By 2020.

 

 

How much will extra money will they put into the NHS?

Above inflation by 2020

Party Policy Notes
Labour £10.5bn? Unclear. Officially “£2.5bn more than Tories” but before Conservatives’ £8bn pledge.
Conservatives £8bn
Liberal Democrats £8bn
UKIP £3bn
Greens £12bn
SNP £9.5bn

 

 

Will they renew Trident?

Party Policy Notes
Labour Yes. 3 or 4 submarines.
Conservatives Yes. 4 submarines.
Liberal Democrats Yes. 3 submarines or less.
UKIP No. Alternative nuclear weapons.
Greens No. No nuclear weapons.
SNP No. No nuclear weapons.

If you want to vote on policies then you could take this survey.

 

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