MP under fire over ‘Thatcher’ remark

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PEVENSEY and Westham MP Greg Barker has defended his comment that the Government was ‘making cuts that Margaret Thatcher could only have dreamt of’.

The Tory Minister for Climate Change made the comments during a speech at the Darla Moore School of Business in Columbia, America, last Friday (April 1).

Mr Barker came under fire from the Labour party and has been forced to defend the statement.

Labour’s Angela Eagle accused him of ‘letting the cat out of the bag’ over the coalition’s true agenda but Mr Barker has said he was trying to explain the tough decision being made by the current government.

Mr Barker issued a statement in relation to the political argument.

He said, “Thanks to the dire economic and financial mess we inherited from the Labour Government, the Coalition is being forced to make some really tough decisions on spending.

“It’s rather pathetic that instead of facing up to the huge problems they created, the Labour Party appear to be in total denial about the deficit and just want to play old-style political games.

“Even Alistair Darling himself admitted Labour overspending meant they would have been forced to make tougher and deeper cuts than Margaret Thatcher.

“The point I was making to an American business audience last week, during a British trade mission I led to the USA, was that the savings and cuts we are being forced to make are even larger than those undertaken when Margaret Thatcher had to pick up the pieces after the ruinous Labour government of the 1970s.

“The good news is that because we are getting to grips with the largest deficit in Britain’s peace time history, international business can look to invest again with confidence in the UK, as we start back on the road to growth and recovery.

“I know these are difficult times for my constituents, but if we don’t take steps now to live within our means, we’ll all end up paying higher taxes or making deeper spending cuts just to pay off Labour’s debts.”