Fact checkers criticise Tory manifesto

Monday, November 25, 2019

Fact-checking organisations have questioned the Conservative Party’s financial figures after it released its manifesto on Sunday.

Independent organisation Full Fact has asked Boris Johnson to explain his claim that ministers would increase day-to-day government spending by only £3 billion per year.

“While the Conservatives plan to increase annual current spending by £3 billion compared to what's already been announced, the Conservatives plan to spend a lot more than £3 billion extra per year than we spend today,” a spokesman said.

“For example, the Conservative manifesto spending list omits its headline pledges on school funding, the NHS, and (creating 20,000 more) police officers.”

The organisation also said the price of training 50,000 extra nurses would be £2.8 billion, rather than the £879 million suggested by the Conservatives.

Full Fact’s chief executive Will Moy said the Conservatives could “do more to meet the standards we expect” when it came to providing voters with “accurate and honest” information.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) said there was a “lack of significant policy action” in the Conservative manifesto.

IFS director Paul Johnson said: “If a single Budget had contained all these tax and spending proposals, we would have been calling it modest.”

“As a blueprint for five years in government, the lack of significant policy action is remarkable.”

Last week the IFS said the figures in Labour’s manifesto were “not credible”.

On Sunday the Prime Minister pledged to boost the NHS with another 50,000 nurses, however Labour said this figure included 19,000 nurses who would be retrained, and a further 12,000 from overseas.

It means only 19,000 posts would be filled by new nurse trainees benefitting from the return of maintenance grants.

Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said the nurse pledge was “frankly deceitful”.

“First we had Johnson's fake 40 new hospitals, now we have his fake 50,000 extra nurses,” he said.

On Monday Mr Johnson will campaign in Wales, while Jeremy Corbyn will be in South Yorkshire.

Read more

Nigel Farage launches Brexit Party platform with immigration pledge

Rishi Sunak: Labour manifesto will hit everyone in their wallets

talkRADIO: Your election station - listen live