Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

If Mrs May Wins the Country Will Be in Good Hands; COLUMNIST

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

If Mrs May Wins the Country Will Be in Good Hands; COLUMNIST

Article excerpt

Byline: GrahamRobb

ON Tuesday I was shocked but impressed by the Prime Minister's decision to hold a General Election in June.

Mrs May has proved to be a capable and decisive leader. Her style is also markedly different to Cameron/ Osborne and I expect to see a straightforward manifesto that will enable her to govern in her own right with an emphasis on policies that build on the fundamental strength of the economy to spread wealth and opportunity.

I also expect to see a Labour campaign based on envy and division. We had a preview of this in recent weeks with some populist policies that would be ineffective and damaging.

Labour's 50% top tax rate will be a disincentive to entrepreneurs and in the last budget it was disclosed top taxpayers are now paying a higher proportion of income tax revenues than ever due to the lower 45% rate.

Taxing private school fees will raise hardly any cash and even that won't be spent in state school classrooms but on school dinners. That a North East Labour MP, Tom Blenkinsop, was the first to rule out standing again should come as no surprise. He wasn't frightened, merely principled. Why subject the people of the North to a Corbyn Government when the Prime Minister is positioned to reflect their views? On Brexit, Mrs May has pursued a clear mandate given to her by almost every part of the North East. On the economy, unemployment has fallen - even post Brexit - down from 110,000 a few years ago to under 80,000 today.

The number of businesses in the North East is up - from 135,000 two years ago to 147,000 today. These businesses need and want stability and, in my view, the best way to achieve it is to stick with Mrs May.

Labour is struggling for workable policy ideas in a political landscape that Mrs May is, rightly in my view, dominating.

Theresa May was schooled in parliamentary politics here in the North East. She and I ran for parliament in the region in 1992, and she was always fascinated by how the economy here works. That is why Mrs May has followed through on the best of the Northern Powerhouse ideas.

The devolution happening on Teesside is already paying off. …

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