On Thursday 4 May, BBC Question Time came from Wigan. And Brexit Secretary David Davis was on the panel for the Conservative Party. But his performance was hardly a glowing reflection of the Tories, as he repeatedly lied throughout the programme.
For example, Davis repeatedly said that work is the best way out of poverty:
But the facts simply do not support this:
- More than 14 million people in the UK now live in relative poverty. But officially, only 1.6 million people are unemployed.
- The number of children living in poverty rose by 400,000 from 2010/11 to 2015/16 to four million.
- 66% of children living in poverty are in working households.
- Nearly half of all poverty in the UK is directly linked to disability.
Food banks were another topic that came up on Question Time. But Davis denied that the Tories were responsible for the increase in food bank use. He claimed that Theresa May was right to say there are “complex reasons” why people go to food banks:
Davis may say that people going to food banks is not something the Tories “want to see”. But under their watch:
- The number of three-day food packages sent out by the Trussell Trust increased from 40,898 to 1,182,954 between 2010 and 2016-17. An increase of 2,792%.
- And the real figures are much worse. The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Hunger estimates that over half the emergency food issued comes from organisations independent from the Trussell Trust’s figures.
- An Oxford University study confirms a “robust link” between the stripping down of the welfare state and food bank use.
An audience member brought up the NHS. And members of the Question Time panel, including Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood, said the Tories were trying to “privatise” the health service. But Davis denied this, saying:
But once again, this is simply not the case. Because there are facts:
- The amount the NHS paid to ‘independent’ companies has more than doubled since 2010 to over £8bn a year.
- Nearly 10% of government health funding now goes to private companies.
- Private companies working in the NHS have seen their profits soar by up to 100%.
Tories: blatant liars
The fact that a senior Tory like Davis can publicly lie as he did on Question Time is unsurprising. And it encapsulates the Conservatives’ attitude to the public. But when May still refuses to take part in televised debates for the general election, you know that her party’s record speaks for itself. That is, it’s appalling. And no amount of deceit from the Tories can hide that fact.
– Register to vote in the 8 June general election. People can call 0300 200 3500 if they don’t already have a national insurance number.
– Discuss the key policy issues with family members, colleagues and neighbours. And organise! Join (and participate in the activities of) a union, an activist group, and/or a political party.
– Also read more Canary articles on the 2017 general election.
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