29.11.2019

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The Simple Politics guide to next week in Parliament.
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Too hot to handle


We've been wading through the mud. Angry people. Squabbling politicians. Cold campaigners shivering their way through deserted streets. If

It's not all been bad. I mean, lots of people like trees. Trees are cool. And all the parties have been promising to plant a few more. Well, a lot more. Loads and loads.

There have been pictures of dogs wearing rosettes. No human on earth doesn't love a dog wearing a rosette.

Finally, my boyhood hero, Matt Le Tissier, now follows SP on twitter. If there is no email next week, it's because I've shut up shop. Goals achieved.

This week, though, it feels like we've turned a bit of a corner. This stuff has got real. Well, by real, I mean suddenly the tone has got a whole lot more serious.

A couple of days ago we got a YouGov poll. Not a normal one but a super special clever one. This is the one that said we'd get a hung Parliament last time round. Very clever. Anyway, what it said is we're going to have a big old Johnson majority. A big ol' Labour loss. SNP not doing as well as they hoped. Lib Dems not winning as many as they started with. Plaid sticking. Greens sticking. Change UK? Gone. 

Now, this is only a poll. It could be completely wrong. Many people on social were telling me that they don't speak to anyone who supports the Conservatives, so how can they be winning? Or similar vibes about the whole of social media. I only see Corbyn friendly posts. He's winning!

I love a discussion of an echo chamber, with your choice of friends, social media algorithms, and bias confirmation, but this isn't the time or the place. You've got an election to try to ignore. 

The point is this - it looks like we are going to have a Conservative majority on December 13th. The Johnson years won't just be a few months, but for five years and a few months. At least. We'll leave the EU on January 31st. 

There are some who don't think that's the best outcome. Round at the McDonnell household, they're not quietly delighted. Ian Blackford isn't running naked round the Talisker Distillery on Skye. Adam Price isn't singing about the bread of heaven quite yet.

So what does this mean? It means campaigning. It means getting out and persuading people of your argument. It means getting on the media and explaining to the people why your vision for the future is quite so compelling.

In short - it's happening. Now. We've got 13 days to go. The Opposition parties know the task ahead of them. Team Everyone Else (for SP email newbies, that's all the anti hard Brexit parties), this is their only opportunity to stop that 31st January exit. Their only chance. If that majority does happen, they will be utterly powerless to stop it.

When this election stuttered to a start, many predicted the final two weeks would be smoking hot. Here we are. Strap in.
We do T-shirts now. What T-shirts they are. You're welcome.
This is a picture of amazing pro and anti Brexit t-shirts
Christmas t-shirts saying 'Get Xmas Done!' and 'For the Merry not the Scrooge'.
Click here to get these in your life
Conservative Party 2019 Manifesto Launch, Telford. Get Brexit done by bringing the Withdrawal Agreement Bill back to Parliament before Christmas and leaving the EU on 31st January.  A 'triple tax lock' to ensure rates of income tax, national insurance and VAT do not rise under a Conservative government. Raise the National Insurance threshold to £9,500 in 2020, with an ambition to raise it further to £12,500. Recruit 50,000 more nurses and restore student nursing bursaries Invest £1bn in social care in every year of the next parliament and build "cross-party consensus" on the issue.  Reduce levels of immigration and introduce a points-based system post-Brexit Recruit 20,000 more police officers over the next three years. Cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050 Introduce free hospital parking for protected groups costing £78m a year.  Boost after-school and holiday childcare by £250m a year, for at least three years, plus a £250m capital spending boost. A £2bn pothole fund for roads targeted at £500m a year, for four years.
Brexit Party 2019 Contract Launch, London. The party will deliver a clean break Brexit that means we are not under EU rule. They want a free trade agreement with EU, but it doesn’t matter if this is arranged before or after we leave. They advocate complete reform of our political system, including changes to voting system and the House of Lords. The Brexit Party would scrap the postal vote register in its entirety, with only those living abroad or with disabilities being able to vote by post. They would also introduce a constitutional convention making all referendum results binding, as well as political guidelines for the Supreme Court. The party would allow people to bring a referendum if more than 5 million sign a register, with issues not to be re-examined in a 10 year period from the last referendum. They would cut the foreign aid budget and cut the cost of living by removing VAT on domestic fuel bills and reduce immigration to post-war levels.
SNP 2019 Manifesto Launch, Glasgow. The SNP want Scotland to remain in the EU, and they back a new UK-wide referendum on EU membership. They believe Scotland should be an independent nation and a second independence referendum is a priority for the SNP. They would demand that necessary powers under The Scotland Act are transferred to Scotland so that decisions about referendums can be taken by Scottish Parliament. The SNP would introduce a National Health Service Protection Act to prevent trade deals causing profit driven exploitation and undermining the founding principles of the NHS. They would invest in public services and the economy to end Austerity and implement an immediate end to the benefit freeze and uplifts in the value of income replacement benefits of at least inflation. The SNP would pursue the devolution of drug policy, immigration powers and employment law. They wish to scrap trident, investing the billions saved in public services. The SNP support a Green Energy Deal that ensures green energy schemes get long-term certainty to support investment. They would ensure that pensions continue to rise by inflation, earnings or 2.5 per cent, whatever is highest.
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