The Labour Leader’s ex-Moll Flanders makes a desperate attempt to make a case against Tory George Osborne……she asks him three questions and claims he would only answer one…shock horror…politician evades answering questions!….except, if she read her own piece, she would see that he did answer all three questions….just not giving the answer that Flander’s obviously wants.
I asked George Osborne three questions this morning, minutes after the latest GDP figures came out. He only answered one of them.
He made clear that there would be no change to the government’s strategy in response to this news. Quite the opposite.
“We can run away from our problems or we can confront them – and we’re going to confront them.”
That was the question he answered.
In response to my second question, he did not take the opportunity to agree with Nick Clegg’s recent suggestion that the coalition (and Labour) had cut capital spending too fast in the early part of the austerity programme.
Mr Osborne did agree that capital investment was important, noting the extra capital spending that had been put back into the budget since 2011. But, he said, restoring confidence in 2010 was important too. In other words, he deflected the question.
Deflected the question? No…he answered it…he told you that they cut capital spending at the given rate in order to restore confidence in the economy.
But his failure to answer my last question did surprise me.
I asked him whether he was going to follow the advice that the IMF’s chief economist, Olivier Blanchard, had given, in a BBC interview with Simon Jack – to use the Budget to rethink at least some of the austerity planned for this year.
Privately, Mr Osborne’s advisors insist that “the IMF’s advice for the UK has not changed”. That’s true. The Fund says that too. Their broad support for the government’s approach still stands.
Well, she answers her own question there….but Osborne had already made it plain in his earlier answer….his policy would remain unchanged.
There are quite a few questions Flanders needs to answer herself.