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Ed Balls slams cost-cutting consensus

Labour leadership candidate Ed Balls has challenged the “strong and broad” consensus around the need for spending cuts and warned that a “second storm looms on the horizon”.

In a speech at Bloomberg’s offices in London this morning, Balls slammed the “political and media consensus” that has developed around the need for tough spending cuts. He suggested there was  “no mandate from the British people” for the level of cuts being proposed.

He said: “It seems incredible to me that such fundamental and far reaching economic decisions are being taken by the coalition Government with so little debate.”

The Shadow Children and Education Secretary rejected Chancellor George Osborne’s claims that Labour “failed to fix the roof while the sun was shining” and compared the current Coalition Government’s economic policies to “ripping out the foundations of the house just as the hurricane is about to hit”.

He suggested Osborne’s “declaration of cautious optimism” will go down in history alongside “Norman Lamont singing in his bath” – a reference to press reports after the withdrawal of the pound from the Exchange Rate Mechanism.

He said economic policies must be “based on a careful balance between employment, spending and taxation” but only after growth is fully secured.

The speech is likely to be seen as a pitch for the job of Shadow Chancellor should his leadership campaign fail.


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There are 6 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. … sorry, but the guy is a brainless, self-opinionated tw*t.

    He’s one of the reasons Labour should NEVER get back in to power …

  2. Stephen Phillips 27th August 2010 at 2:25 pm

    2.1 million MORE people voted for the Conservatives than Labour in this year’s general election ( – and that is without counting the Liberals’ 6.8 million votes.

    I would say that that constitutes a Mandate.

    But Mr. Balls is the man who never understood the maths behind why ASP was a bad thing for the revenue, compared with extending the unsecured pension regime (I know, because I tried to explain it to him) so he is clearly innumerate.

  3. I don’t remember the Labour government having a strong and broad” consensus to take this country to the brink of bankruptcy.

    I think the history books will be more interested in recording his incompetent labour governments massive debts that future generations have now been lumbered with.

  4. Political posturing from Brown’s buddy.

    Lower than a snake’s belly.

  5. I agree with the above comments – unless he wants proportional representation and referendums on each issue.

    I dont recall a national consensus for bringing the country to the edge of bankruptcy (you can blame the banks as much as you want but it happend on your watch) or the Iraq and Afgnanistan wars.

    PS has anyone noticed how much he looks like Nick Griffin the BNP leader?

  6. @ Sean

    Agreed, with nearly as daft policies as well.

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