23 July 2015
John McDonnell said he “would swim through vomit to vote against the Bill, and listening to some of the nauseating speeches tonight, I think we might have to.”.
Welfare Reform and Work Bill
John McDonnell spoke in parliament delineating the absurdity of the Welfare bill perfectly;
“Poverty in my constituency is not a lifestyle choice. Its imposed upon people. We hear that is. lots about how high the welfare bill is. Lets understand why that is the case. The housing benefit bill is so high is because for generation we’ve failed to build council houses, we’ve failed to control rents, we’ve done nothing about the 300,000 properties that stand empty in this country. The reason tax credits are so high, is because pay is so low. And the reason pay is so low is because employers have exploited workers, and we’ve removed trade union rights that enable people to be protected at work. We now have less that a third of our workers covered by collective bargaining agreements. And the reason unemployment bills are so high is because we’ve failed to invest in our economy. We’ve allowed deindustrialisation of the north and Scotland and elsewhere. They’re the reasons the welfare bill is so high. And this welfare bill done what other welfare bills in recent years has done – it blames the poor for their own poverty and not the system”.
Job creation: Quality vs Quantity
The number of high-skill jobs in the UK economy is shrinking, while low-skill jobs are increasing.
Labour MP Andrew Gwynne asked Damien the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Damian Hinds if he was proud of that record.
He replied, “There has been a growth in the number of jobs in low and medium-skill sectors, and we should all welcome that…I am sorry—I meant high and medium-skill sectors”.