Scotland didn't vote for austerity but it still cost us £2.6billion

By , 03/09/18

As MPs head back to Westminster for the start of the new parliamentary year, the coming weeks and months will be a real test of credibility for Tory and Labour politicians in Scotland. Will they continue to obey and rubber-stamp every damaging policy imposed by their Westminster leaders or will they finally join the SNP in standing up for the interests of their Scottish constituents?

 

That question should be a no-brainer. The basic role of any MP is to listen to the concerns of your constituents and then act in their interests.

 

That’s why its so shameful that Tory and Labour MPs have repeatedly ignored Scotland’s wishes on the biggest issues facing our country.

 

From dragging us out of the EU against our will, to imposing deep austerity cuts and undermining devolution with a power grab on the Scottish Parliament, Tory and Labour MPs have consistently failed Scotland by backing Westminster policies that have left us poorer and worse off.

 

As the UK hurtles towards the EU exit door, the months ahead will be particularly crucial in determining Scotland’s future – and it is now more important than ever that all of Scotland’s MPs are focused on defending our national interests.

 

 

Brexit is by far the biggest threat to Scotland’s economy and long-term prosperity. We know from the UK Government’s own analysis that Tory and Labour plans for a hard Brexit would be catastrophic – lowering Scottish GDP by up to nine per cent, putting 80,000 jobs at risk and costing us the equivalent of £12.7billion a year or £2300 for every person in the country.

 

Scotland voted overwhelmingly against Brexit but the Westminster parties have chosen to completely ignore our democratic decision and they are now intent on taking us out of the world’s largest single market and customs union too.

 

With the UK Government due to agree a deal with the EU in October and the UK set to leave the EU in March, it is vital that Tory and Labour MPs finally get behind the SNP’s compromise plan to keep the UK in the single market and customs union.

 

Short of staying in the EU, that is the only way to protect jobs and prosperity, and it would be a complete betrayal of Scottish families if they continue to back Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn’s hard Brexit obsession instead.

 

 

Among all the chaos of Brexit, the UK Government must also produce a new Budget in November – and it will be another key test for Tory and Labour MPs in Scotland. Will they continue to back the failed austerity cuts that have held back the economy, pushed families into poverty and taken vital funds away from public services – or will they back the SNP’s call for an end to the cuts?

 

Scotland never voted for austerity – but the UK Government have cut £2.6billion from our budget, taken social security support away from families, and imposed Dickensian policies like the rape clause, the bedroom tax and cuts to disability support.

 

Scotland’s MPs have a responsibility to stand up for their constituents. As we face the crucial decisions and challenges of the months ahead, people across Scotland will be watching. Tory and Labour MPs must stop failing Scotland or they will pay a heavy price at the next election.

 

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