Tory promises: often made, rarely delivered

The Tories have a habit of making promises to the people of Scotland and then never delivering on them; this week was no different.

Despite promising they would amend the European Withdrawal Bill to stop the Westminster power grab, the deadline has now passed without any serious amendments being tabled. Just another broken Tory promise to add to the list.

From pledging a ‘
powers bonanza’ for Holyrood after Brexit, to telling shipyard workers that a No vote would protect their jobs, or Ruth Davidson’s constant flip-flopping over the European Single Market – the reality has been damning indictment of the Tory attitude to Scotland.

Here’s just some of the Tories long list of broken promises:

1. Brexit

Following the EU referendum, Theresa May pledged to work with devolved administrations on a UK-wide approach to Brexit. But Theresa May then triggered Article 50 in March 2016 with no UK-wide approach agreed.

The Tory Scottish Secretary, David Mundell promised a “powers bonanza” for Holyrood after Brexit but couldn’t name a single power that would be devolved. The EU Withdrawal Bill, making its way through Westminster is actually power grab, with powers in devolved areas going straight back to London.  

2. Support for low income families

In 2015, the Tories promised that they would not cut child benefits or tax credits and would protect ‘working families’. But the Tories have failed to lift their benefits freeze – resulting in a 17% real-terms cut to first child benefits between 2010-11 and 2021-22.

To make it worse, the Tories then announced plans to limit Child Tax Credits to only two children and tried to bury their callous Rape Clause policy in the detail in the 2015 budget.
Ruth Davidson has continued to defend this cruel and callous policy.

Read more about the Tories Rape Clause here.

3. Reducing child poverty

In both their 2015 and 2017 manifestos the Tories pledge to eliminate child poverty. In fact, they’ve scrapped statutory income-based child poverty targets.

As a result of Tory policies,
four million children in the UK are now living in poverty – the highest level since 2010.

The Scottish Government has now reinstated statutory child poverty targets in Scotland, with new income-based targets that go further than those scrapped by Westminster.

4. Support for carbon capture in Aberdeenshire

In 2014, the UK government argued that it’s pledge to support carbon capture technology was a reason for Scots to vote No.

This commitment to a £1 billion investment in Carbon Capture and Storage was also set out in the Conservative 2015 manifesto. Yet six months before the investment was due to be awarded, with Peterhead power station a frontrunner,
the UK government scrapped their investment.

In contrast, the Scottish Government has pledged £100,000 to underpin the feasibility stage of the newly proposed Acorn Project at St Fergus in Aberdeenshire

5. Police and Fire VAT refund

After over 140 SNP calls, over five years, for an end to the unjust VAT charges for our police and fire services, the UK Chancellor finally relented in the 2017 UK Budget.But Scottish Tory MPs refused to join SNP calls for the £140 million already charged to be returned and invested in Scotland’s emergency services.

The SNP will keep fighting for the rebate.

6. Shipbuilding

During the independence referendum, the Tory government promised that 13 new Type 26 frigates would be built on the Clyde, as well as a new frigate factory.

In 2015, this pledge was scaled back to just eight frigates. Five new general purpose frigates were then promised but these orders could now go elsewhere too.

No new frigate factory has been delivered and orders for just three ships have been signed.

7. Universal Credit

When the Tories announced their Universal Credit system they said it would improve welfare and help those seeking employment. However from the outset, the roll-out of Universal Credit has been a complete disaster.

The evidence so far is that Universal Credit is causing unnecessary hardship, with families falling behind in rent payments and increasingly relying on emergency welfare support and foodbanks.

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