Rachel Reeves could single-handedly lose the election for Labour

Rachel Reeves: So stupid she'll cost Labour the election.

Rachel Reeves: This photo is a rare occasion in which she doesn’t have her foot in her mouth.

I’ll say it if nobody else will – Rachel Reeves is so stupid she could lose Labour the election.

Work and Pensions is a gaping policy open-goal for the Tories but Ms Reeves can’t see this and wants the world to know she’ll out-cut them on the Benefit Cap.

“Labour supports a cap on benefits. We will ask an independent commission to look at whether the cap should be lower in some areas,” are her actual words.

What stupidity. One can only imagine she is basing these comments on the fact that wages are lower in some areas than others. But prices are just as high!

Sure, it’s an important point that David Cameron’s government “has spent £25bn more than planned on welfare because of his failure to tackle the low pay that leaves millions dependent on benefits to make ends meet”. And her comments about apprenticeships may be accurate as well.

But what about all the deaths caused by Iain Duncan Smith’s homicidal benefits regime?

What about the huge numbers of people who have simply disappeared from the benefit system rather than face another round of humiliation and sanction on possibly fraudulent grounds?

What about workfare?

What about zero-hours contracts, part-time and temporary work, and all the dodges employers are using to get out of paying for holidays, sickness and the like?

What about the scandal of our low-wage economy, that keeps people on in-work benefits and denies the Treasury the Income Tax money it needs to pay off the deficit and debt?

What about the many other legitimate grounds for laying into the Coalition government?

This is utterly unacceptable – and in the run-up to an election.

What is Ed Miliband thinking, letting her keep the Work and Pensions brief?

He must get rid of her – not just for our sakes, but for his own party’s electoral chances.


  1. Alan Watkins-Groves January 27, 2015 at 7:26 pm - Reply

    Can I just add that Tristram Hunt is causing teachers to opt for the Greens in what seems like huge numbers by what I see on the NUT page.

  2. jeffrey davies January 27, 2015 at 7:27 pm - Reply

    Rachel Reeves has ive stated before blairs babys but once again she cant keep it shut wonder if the rest will open their mouths jeff3

  3. HomerJS January 27, 2015 at 7:29 pm - Reply

    I completely agree with you. It is incomprehensible how Labour have not seen the real opportunity within the welfare debate. Instead of trying to out Tory the Tories they should instead be following the other Tory model of just keep repeating the same message until it sticks. Let’s face it, if the population is happy about abusing people, bullying them and pushing them towards death, then we are all doomed anyway. Tell the people the truth and let them decide what sort of person they want to be. You can still talk tough about scroungers, but put your emphasis on supporting those who are vulnerable. If they read what’s out there on the net then they know they don’t need to come up with the arguments, they’ve already been made. They just need to take them on to the political stage and keep ramming them down the throats of the media.

  4. nick January 27, 2015 at 7:30 pm - Reply

    the bottom line is she is not reading your blog mike and that is very worrying as it is regarded as a top blog and anyone not keeping up to date on the top ten blogs is a fool and not fit to hold any type of office or even as a mp

    it can’t be right that someone like myself knows what’s going on in all the top ten blogs so i am regarded as being on the ball across all topics the public find of use and she Rachel Reeves appears to want to know nothing

    my own view is that neither the labour or conservatives parties have any interest in the welfare of the sick and disabled and want them to go away by any means and as we have seen over the past 5 years the conservatives are doing a grand job at getting rid of this type of people or as prince charles as just said on tv remembering the holocaust victims the “others” meaning the sick and disabled

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 7:56 pm - Reply

      I don’t think she reads this blog either. There’s nothing to stop people who do read it from lobbying her and asking her to go. I tweeted the article to her with the hashtag #reevesmustresign and can happily recommend that anybody else does the same.

  5. Rupert Mitchell (@rupert_rrl) January 27, 2015 at 7:30 pm - Reply

    Rachel Reeves should not be allowed to make such comments without a full explanation of what she actually means. I think her remarks are a great boost for the Conservatives and appear almost designed to lose Labour the election. I for one am very disappointed in her.

  6. leonc1963 January 27, 2015 at 7:36 pm - Reply

    Agree further cuts on top of what many have already suffered will do nothing to boost the economy as it is those many millions who are in the main the spenders bring in taxation to the treasury

  7. che January 27, 2015 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    Surely Labour should be laying into IDS, and Camoron about welfare reform and its death policy results on a continuous basis ?
    Still, not enough of the public know or care about this.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 7:53 pm - Reply

      Wholeheartedly yes.

      • Ian January 27, 2015 at 8:46 pm - Reply

        So why are Labour so timid on this? If they included the number of Atos deaths in their soundbites and spoke only about that, the papers wouldn’t be able to misquote them. Nobody, not even the Daily Mail, could be openly happy to defend state sanctioned (lol) killing by this government?

        I was slowly being swayed to vote Labour if it was a close run thing but not now, not until this bleeding idiot is sacked. I’m going to email Labour about it, maybe eventually, with enough pressure, Ed Miliband will do something useful…

        • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 9:03 pm - Reply

          I’m still voting Labour but I’ll be putting pressure on for her to go.

      • Donna Stanley January 27, 2015 at 8:49 pm - Reply

        totally agree, IDS and his witch of a side kick Mcvey are sitting targets and Labour seems to be missing a perfect opportunity to show they are set to protect the vulnerable..but no, they are silent!

  8. gavinpollock January 27, 2015 at 7:55 pm - Reply

    She’s already lost Labour my vote, but I doubt she’ll cost Labour the election. Sadly, with the relentless poverty porn “documentaries” pushing IDS and McVey’s agenda, the benefit cap is considered to be a good idea by lots of people.

    The fact that study after study has shown it doesn’t work doesn’t matter to IDS or Reeves.

    • Joan January 29, 2015 at 3:54 am - Reply

      It’s true. From her promise “Labour will be tougher than Tories on benefits” from back in Oct 2013 I was horrified. So much was coming out about ATOS lies and how it was killing off our sick and disabled and many thousands struggling – Not only did Labour not stand up publicly for our sick and disabled they produced *that* article and I can say that was the defining moment for me that I realised Labour just didn’t give a s**t anymore.

      When the Greens came out publicly supporting the WOW petition, Labour just seemed worryingly quiet apart from a few amazing MPs like Andy Burnham, Tony Benn and a few others. So few turned up at the wow debate it’s clear that it didn’t matter to Labour. It’s really sad. The fact that they allow Rachel Reeves to continue makes me feel I made the right decision when I joined the Greens in May 2014.

      Rachel Reeves comments were THE deciding factor for me to switch, then finding what I feel are old Labour policies in the Green manifesto wanting to re-nationalise energy & rail, fight for the NHS and anti TTIP I joined pretty much on the spot. Labour has lost the plot. Voters like me will not return until they change their tune and return to their roots. I don’t know if they have lost me for good. Only time will tell. I don’t mind Milliband, but I think Andy Burnham is my favourite. Loathe Rachel Reeves as she’s a Tory! So this article is accurate and relevant as she was the person that made me think I have nothing in common with Labour anymore and actually felt disgust and revulsion. :/

  9. Chris Mckenzie January 27, 2015 at 8:00 pm - Reply

    Ed is happy with her… she’s definitely “on message” for the Labour austerity lite machine.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 8:02 pm - Reply

      No, she isn’t!

      • Terry Jager January 27, 2015 at 8:54 pm - Reply

        If Miss reeves still has a job on Monday I would think Ed IS happy with her & yes the message is accurate ! sorry Mike

  10. concernedkev January 27, 2015 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    Where and when was this comment made Mike. I remember her making a b*****ks 2 years ago but when recently did she repeat this. If you are using old information from Atos Miracles then you may have been had. There is a strong anti Labour element running in some of the disability blogs. Check your sources. If she has made this statement recently then I for one will be the first to jump on her.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 9:02 pm - Reply

      It was in a press release today. Look on press.labour.org.uk for it.

  11. radicalpeter January 27, 2015 at 8:48 pm - Reply

    You’ve blown it Labour

    You took a massive beating in 2010
    And it looks like it will happen again
    You’ve lost the plot, you stupid twats
    Enclosed in your bubble, a fairies nest
    The unreal world of technocrats.
    It was Tory Blair who destroyed our faith
    In all things socialist that we once embraced
    Plus Brown and Mandelson, lying cow sons
    Like Machiavellian wizards created the hated PFI
    That sold the welfare state belonging to you and I.
    Hoodwinking our unions with” jam tomorrow”
    As they ploughed in millions, for lies so hollow
    Union leaders gave pots of OUR money away
    So Ermine robes would grace their backs
    As in the House of Lords they finally sat.
    You’ve blown it Labour with the working class
    As you talk and babble of the upper middle ones
    We are told to bend down and kiss their arse
    Labour is stone like dead and must be revived
    The Miliband millionaires in front row seats
    Will lead OUR party into certain defeat
    A working class hero is what OUR party we needs
    REAL working socialists for the party to succeed.
    Old fashioned socialist and not multimillionaires
    Must take over labour for the working class
    Just as they did in Nye Bevan’s days
    When nationalisation of everything
    Gave us workers the socialist dream.
    So pack your bags, you must go
    For we are sick and tired
    Of Ed Miliband’s one man show.

    You’ve Blown it Ed now just p*ss off
    And go.

  12. Pat January 27, 2015 at 9:07 pm - Reply

    This is just a rehash of Liam Byrne’s ideas for regional benefits to make sure that everybody is suffering the pain of hell everywhere throughout the country. This whole nonsense, Tory and Labour, is based on the false notion that people can actively make a “lifestyle choice” either to live on benefits or work for a living. Which is a lie, as every person who has ever signed on or been on the Work Programme will tell you. Reeves always has been an incredibly bad political operator and performer, regularly dissected and torn to shreds by interviewers like Andrew Neil and similar. From her monotone and passionless voice to her moronic and passionless ideas, about as animated as a dead cod on a fishmongers slab, as wooden as any plank, Reeves definitely isn’t fit to sit around Labour’s cabinet table or to occupy the office that she holds.

    Reeves should go ASAP.

    The pity of it is that many thought she would be an improvement on her predecessor.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 11:20 pm - Reply

      I did.
      Actually, I still do.
      Liam Byrne belongs in the Alan Milburn ‘closet Tory’ bin.
      Rachel Reeves just belongs in the ‘useless’ bin next to it.

      • Pat January 28, 2015 at 8:13 am - Reply

        Thing is: How would regional benefits work? If you live in Plymouth would your benefits be more (or less) than somebody living across the Tamar river in Saltash because you live in different counties or under different local authorities? Would people living in expensive areas have their benefits capped at a higher level because rents were more expensive? How the heck could you carve up the country and award different amounts of money to different claimants based on where they were at one particular moment in time? Where would the dividing lines be drawn? How could a postcode lottery like this be managed and maintained without creating no go areas and ghettos for the poor? With Universal Credit failing why would anybody even be considering adding more impossible conditionality to social security?

        Reeves is astoundingly maladroit.

  13. gfranklinpercival January 27, 2015 at 9:22 pm - Reply

    Oh dear me. The labour party abstains from voting on the fracking moratorium, thereby putting the third padlock on its own coffin. Promptly casts about for someone to blame? Not a one of them has done a tap in opposition, they have colluded with all others to give themselves extra pay, pensions, expenses, holidays. They feel they ought to earn as much for even less effort than other members of their criminal confrerie.

    “Labour”,(promptly pukes, manfully wipes face with back of hand) had only one lob to do, but by its abandonment of a commitment :-

    ‘To secure for the workers by hand or by brain the full fruits of their industry and the most equitable distribution thereof that may be possible upon the basis of the common ownership of the means of production, distribution and exchange, and the best obtainable system of popular administration and control of each industry or service.’

    …. it became irrelevant. No Clause IV or exceedingly similar social commitment, no socialist party, no vote. It really is as stunningly simple as that.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 11:06 pm - Reply

      I’ve read some rubbish today but your comment stands out for its utter lack of evidence or understanding of the situation.

    • Hannah Elrich January 28, 2015 at 2:40 pm - Reply

      From the perspective of a working class woman living on a council estate I can see nothing apart from a promise to dump the bedroom tax that Labour has to offer the poor, low waged, disabled and demoralised people who make up my neighbourhood. Where is the promise of action to build social rent housing? What are they going to do about sanctions, welfare cuts and the outrageous abuse of the working class by the state? NOTHING, just carry on withit. The latest attempt to get his name in the paper by a prospective Labour candidate in this town was a council resolution calling for the installation of solar panels on council house roofs. Proposed without prior consultation with tenants who are desperate for kitchen and bathroom upgrades to 1960s properties and don’t want to be seeing him burnishing his green credentials at our expense. Another out of touch careerist the Labour party is stuffed with them

      • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 1:21 am - Reply

        Just a couple of things:
        Labour has promised a massive house-building programme, some of which must be social housing according to current rules. I want more, but this is a start.
        Labour has promised to end sanction targets. Again, not enough, but a start.
        So you’re wrong to say Labour is willing to “just carry on” with what the Coalition has done, but right to say that Labour must do more, and better.

  14. Simon Benjamin January 27, 2015 at 9:52 pm - Reply

    Vote Green for real change not Tory life I mean Labour

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 10:59 pm - Reply

      You are exactly the sort of person against whom I have been warning everybody, in the two fracking articles, yesterday and today.
      Why don’t you go off and direct your enthusiasm at the Tories?
      Or are you too scared?

  15. warthog2407 January 27, 2015 at 10:24 pm - Reply

    Labour have already lost my vote. IDS in a Wig is one of the reasons, along with the cowardly abstention on the Cat Reilly issue.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 10:58 pm - Reply

      If you mean the Jobseekers (Back to Work Schemes) Act, then it wasn’t a simple abstention. Labour negotiated concessions that Liam Byrne (and possibly Ed Miliband) thought were useful.
      I hope everybody knows my own opinion about that!
      (They weren’t worth the time it takes to mention them.)
      It wasn’t cowardly, though – there was an intended gain in it.

  16. Jill PB January 27, 2015 at 10:25 pm - Reply

    She may not be on the right track but she is certainly not stupid. Two degrees from Oxford? The only time stupid people get such degrees is when they are royalty.

    • Mike Sivier January 27, 2015 at 10:55 pm - Reply

      You can be extremely intelligent and still be incredibly stupid. If Rachel Reeves doesn’t know – or doesn’t care – that her stance on Work and Pensions issues is severely prejudicing Labour’s chances then she is stupid.

      • Michele Witchy Eve January 28, 2015 at 4:14 pm - Reply

        In my youth my father would refer to “educated idiots”. The implication being that, for all their education, little true understanding or thinking ability stuck.

    • Pat January 29, 2015 at 8:16 am - Reply

      Degrees in economics don’t mean that person would be a good engineer or a politician. A man or woman expert in every aspect of the English language – grammar, syntax, punctuation, metre, semantics – with the largest vocabulary in the world may yet not be able to write a novel or a poem or anything worth reading. Reeves is a clever girl but she is also a textbook example of how an Oxbridge alumnus can be a lousy politician. Rachel isn’t politically gifted. The woman has dropped more clangers than a soup dragon. She’s out of her depth and should got rid of or moved to, say, a treasury brief where her banking talents might be more useful.

  17. casalealex January 27, 2015 at 10:51 pm - Reply

    I have just sent the following email to Rachel Reeves:


    Rachel Reeves could single-handedly lose the election for Labour

    Labour party activists are working their butts off to ensure we have a Labour Government in May. Unfortunately, they are being severely hampered by your incomprehensible and treasonable utterings.

    • Robert Price January 28, 2015 at 1:54 am - Reply

      This article presumes that these thoughts are purely attributable to Rachel Reeves. She is the party spokesperson on the subject and her parties chosen path has been clear. They have voted to support austerity, they have stated a commitment to match cuts, and where the opportunity arises to stand up for the people of Britain, as with the fracking vote, they are nowhere to be seen.

      This isn’t one voice in the Labour Party, this is the party the champagne socialists want us to vote for. I certainly won’t be voting for UKIP, Tories, LibDems or Labour; they’re all bought & paid for the rich. As are the media, and it seems increasingly what we hoped would be a genuine honest alternative media.

      • Mike Sivier January 28, 2015 at 11:58 pm - Reply

        Well, ‘greenparty-robert’, there’s so much in your first paragraph that is incorrect, it hardly seems worthwhile engaging in debate. Still, let’s try.
        Labour has not voted to support austerity. Only this evening I heard a Coalition representative berating Labour for voting against every single benefit ‘reform’ brought in during the current Parliament.
        Labour has not stated a commitment to match any Coalition cuts. Labour has stated a commitment to match Coalition spending – and even then, only for the first year of a Labour government; long enough to clear any outstanding Coalition contracts with private organisations.
        As for the fracking vote, Labour did stand up for the people of Britain. The proposed moratorium wasn’t going to get anywhere when the Coalition could put up more than 300 MPs against it. Labour was able to achieve regulation of fracking that will delay any commercial operations for the foreseeable future, making it possible for a new government to overturn all legislation on fracking before any takes place.

        Now answer me one thing: Why is the Green Party wasting so much time attacking Labour and trying to split the Left vote, when it could be laying into the Conservatives instead?

  18. Thomas M January 28, 2015 at 1:57 am - Reply

    She could drive voters off to the Greens, Left Unity, the TUSC ect-all parties with no chance of getting anywhere at all.

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 12:00 am - Reply

      I made that point to her on Twitter this evening. No response but we can hope it registered.

  19. bookmanwales January 28, 2015 at 2:27 am - Reply

    I think it is unfair to simply blame Rachel Reeves for these comments. These are comments she has repeated time after time over the last 4 years without any form of censure from her party leaders. This can only mean they agree in principle with what she is saying.

    The number of non votes cast by the labour party from the social welfare act to fracking does not bode well for them either.

    Whilst the argument you make that their votes would make no difference may be valid it simply appears to the majority that Labour have no real interest in being any different than the Tories when it comes to “austerity”

    No one from the Labour party has, to my knowledge, made any reference to changes in the welfare measures enacted by the Tories save for the bedroom tax. Work programme, sanctions, wca, benefit cap are all studiously ignored in all debates and press releases.

    Labour has 2 choices as I see it, concede defeat now to avoid humiliation at the election or tell the working masses exactly what and how they are going to do to get us out of this “austerity” loop.

    Cutting off bankers subsidies, scrapping HS2, stopping privatisation, re-nationalising vital services, cutting tax avoidance, scrapping Trident etc. All these cost us lots of money, far far in excess of what is saved on benefit cuts and last but not least scrapping the 11% pay rise they want whilst expecting the rest of us to “tough it out”.

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 12:11 am - Reply

      Rachel Reeves has only been in-post as shadow work and pensions secretary since late 2013 so, unless you’re privy to conversations she’s had in private, I don’t believe your first point. This was the first time (that I can recall) I’ve seen any indication that she wants to lower the Benefit Cap. The Tories have been suggesting it for some time.
      Your point about Labour’s leaders agreeing with her is valid – and is one of the main reasons I wrote the article. If Labour seriously believes this kind of talk will win votes in the numbers Labour needs, they are sorely mistaken and will be soundly defeated in the election. They are turning their back on a huge constituency that they should be supporting.
      Your comment about ‘non votes’ – by which I take it you mean abstentions – is a fallacy. Labour has abstained rarely, and only when there is a political advantage to be gained. The social welfare act – by which I take it you mean the Welfare Reform Act 2012 – was opposed by the Parliamentary Labour Party in its entirety. Every Labour MP in the Commons chamber voted against it. I have covered fracking in my response to Robert Price.
      If Labour hasn’t been able to get its message across to the majority about the reasons for its behaviour in the fracking vote, perhaps this is due to the number of minority party supporters who have been screaming about ‘Red Tories’ and ‘Tory-lite’ ever since the debate took place.
      While I think you are mistaken about the number of work and pensions policies Labour plans to repeal, I’m not going to argue against you about this because – as you know – my view is that Labour is travelling in entirely the wrong direction and must rip up its entire welfare policy and start again, from a position of helping benefit claimants, rather than saving money.
      Ed Balls has already told us all how Labour is going to get us out of the austerity ‘loop’, as you describe it. It’s in previous Vox Political articles so you can easily look it up.
      Here’s a clue: You can pay for anything if your economy is expanding and you have higher Income Tax receipts.

  20. sam vickers January 28, 2015 at 5:11 am - Reply

    Labour lost its way under blair and is still losing it , for the first time in a general election ( I am 62 ) i will not vote labour , they have not a clue how people are struggling they think every one is on average ! Average wage average house price 10 million workers have never seen average wages and cannot afford average prices ! This year I will vote TUSC

  21. Mr.Angry January 28, 2015 at 7:02 am - Reply

    I remain lost for words, what the hell is in her head can she not see the writing on the wall, people are dying. Is she so blind or as suggested totally stupid she certainly needs to circulate amongst the poor sods being victimised

    I am annoyed I want Labour to win albeit not perfect but anything is better than tory scum does she not realise how many votes she will cost her party.

    I for one will be writing in this very day I am not having her ruin my remaining years as she will undoubtedly ruin any chance Labour has as I will not vote if she remains bleating such garbage.

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 1:32 am - Reply

      I would certainly urge anybody else with an opinion to tell Ms Reeves what they think of her words and policies. Be polite and be specific. It certainly couldn’t hurt.

  22. photodroptrial January 28, 2015 at 8:23 am - Reply

    Can I just genuinely ask, without any point being made or political bias, what ‘deaths’ you are talking about caused by Ian Duncan Smith? That seems pretty outrageously inaccurate to me, but I wait to be told different by more informed folk like yourselves…

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 1:28 am - Reply

      You don’t know about the 10,600 ESA deaths between January and November 2011, and the fact that the DWP has refused all legitimate requests for further death statistics since?
      You don’t know about the people driven to suicide by prejudiced work capability assessments that left them penniless? Or those driven to it by unfair – possibly fraudulent – JSA sanctions? Or at least one person who froze to death in the street after being sanctioned (no suicidal intent may be construed from what happened)?
      Where have you been for the past few years?
      I have spent years trying to prize the total number of ESA deaths from the DWP. In fact, I have a Freedom of Information request awaiting an adjudication by the Information Commissioner’s office at the moment – and it’s been there for a suspiciously long time (since November). Usually it takes them less than a month.

  23. John Garrett January 28, 2015 at 9:35 am - Reply

    Ermmmm… Interesting that you’re still hanging onto an ideal that disappeared with Tony Blair’s first election. THE SYTSEM IS BROKEN. To be a politician for Labour, Conservative or Liberal Democrat means that you are a greedy self concerned neo-liberalist corrupted by American corporations. If you believe anything else, you have simply dived your head into the sand and held onto a flame that the people you thought worked for you disappeared with Nye Bevan.

  24. Dawn Kay January 28, 2015 at 9:51 am - Reply

    It seems to me that the bulk of the money that people receive in benefits goes to private landlords- instead of squeezing the benefits even further what Labour should be looking at is fair and affordable rents and building more social housing. At the moment the interest rates paid on these buy to let mortgages is fairly low- but once there is a rise there will be an inevitable hike in the rents they charge. Thus more pain for those on benefits. The current policies are seeing ordinary people can no longer afford to live in places like London – where the jobs are- bearing in mind that many people who receive benefits are working. This is leading to an instability in the capital, which in turn will lead to problems elsewhere.
    Solve the HOUSING problem, give us fair rents and then look at a benefits cap. Don’t punish the poor, sick and vulnerable just because you won’t face down the causes of high housing costs.

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 12:24 am - Reply

      Labour does have plans for a rent cap, and more social housing will be on the way – and faster – if a Labour government is elected in May.
      I should probably add that I’m not opposed to a benefits cap. My issue with it is that the Coalition made it much too low. It should have been £31,500 – equal to an average families actual income, rather than what the Tories said an average family earns.

  25. Pete B January 28, 2015 at 10:14 am - Reply

    Reeves is utterly wrong.And I back Mikes idea of putting pressure on her to go.

    But I will vote Labour,what is the option.Only two parties can get a majority in this country.And that is Labour or the Tories.If Labour get in,I feel they will be more open to arguments than IDS saying he believes he is right.

    If the Tories get in this time,even with UKIP or LimpDem support.They have a mandate to kick the poor.Cameron has stated his intention to cut benefits.

    If you are happy for your Grandchildren to have no NHS,then don’t vote Labour.

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 12:25 am - Reply

      I’m voting Labour.
      I simply want the Labour for whom I vote to have a decent policy on social security.

  26. Steve Rudd January 28, 2015 at 11:41 am - Reply

    Well, I have said this for many months. Although I don’t think she will lose the election single handedly for Labour, since the whole party seems to have collective amnesia when it comes to he word “opposition”, and their feebleness at conceding the battleground to the Tory/Lib Dim Junta on issue after issue would be risible if it wasn’t so tragic.

    For some reason, I seem to have got onto the Labour Party prospective supporters email list and regularly get missives purporting to be “from” Ed Miliband and other Labour luminaries appealing for help and/or money. Since I have often replied that Rachel Reeves and her attitude to people on benefits is a considerable barrier to my voting Labour, and never had any acknowledgement or response, it’s pretty clear from that alone that Labour just isn’t listening.

    I wonder how many constituencies in May will come back as

    Lib Dims (lost deposit)

    because of Labour’s supine attitude and lack of vision?

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 12:32 am - Reply

      Labour has not “conceded the battleground… on issue after issue”. It isn’t “supine” and in many policy areas there is no “lack of vision”.
      However, I agree with most of the points you make here.

  27. concernedkev January 28, 2015 at 2:31 pm - Reply

    Hi Mike I have read the statement and you were right to highlight it. However to counter the fellow party critics we have to put forward what the correct position should be . Out there thanks to all the anti benefit programmes and paper coverage that has been misleading the electorate there is, whether we like it or not a negative image to which even party members fall foul. We should be pointing out that when they talk of capping benefits that those allegedly receiving them do not in fact get them. The majority of the figure of £26,000 goes out in payments – to local council tax relief = £1000 to £2000. Then the payment of rent (where regional variations come in ) In London rents are obscene and our taxes are used to line the pockets of Rackrenting landlords not just in London but throughout the UK. Rent is the substantial proportion of benefit paid. The policy of paying it to the claimant and not the landlord is all part of the ruse to discredit the claimant and take the heat off the profiteers. To cap the rents should be the policy along with security of tenure and rights to non discrimination of claimants. Bland statements that simply echo what the Tories are saying are, as you say, leading to a disaster for Labour. I have emailed her as I said I would let’s hope she or someone on her team listens.

  28. SImon January 28, 2015 at 4:24 pm - Reply

    Wasn’t Ed Miliband saying Housing Benefit for twenty something home leavers was going to be a thing of the past – in his attempt to out Tory the Tories. I think he needs better advisors, who are not proponents of Tory and Tory rag tactics in regard of the Old, the Young, the Disabled, the Sick and any other minority group that the divisive Tories see fit to use to deflect the ire of the public against, who can tell the public the ineffective, corrupt, and self serving style of their government is not working to their interests and in which way – as someone said citing the deaths due to Atos, the misery induced by sanctioning, ditto the misery caused by shutting down A&E departments, the hypocrisy of the health MP saying he uses A&E for his family, the greed of a Prime Minister who applies for sick pay for his child when he is purportedly a multi millionaire, the greed of a Government who permits Workfare, Zero Hours for backhanders from the companies who are then permitted to use such unpaid work, The Greed of a Government that cuts on Health, Public Services, Education and Law Enforcement – but that permits Corporations to pay little or no tax, The Hypocrisy and Deception of a Government that goes to Brussels to ask the EU to lay off restrictions on Bankers Bonuses, yet that always repeatedly tries to blame Labour for the Banking crisis of 08, the miserliness and selfishness of a Government whose representatives voted unanimously against Energy Companies passing on the Wholesale purchase savings on to customers last week, anyhow there is plenty for Labour to get their teeth into there – so why aren’t they? Don’t they have any teeth ?

    • Mike Sivier January 29, 2015 at 12:55 am - Reply

      This blog has certainly laid into the government on all the issues you have raised.
      Labour has too – on many of them, at least. So Labour does have teeth.
      But Labour certainly needs to do more. I reckon you make a lot of very good points.
      You need to sort your spellchecker, though. The word I’ve edited into ‘proponents’ initially appeared as ‘poo pants’!

  29. wickedgreenblog January 28, 2015 at 4:56 pm - Reply

    Nice summary Mike. It’s people like Rachel Reeves and Tristram Hunt that are really scaring loyal Labour voters away. Sadly too many proto-Blairites left in the Commons, and because they are seen as ‘talented’ Ed Miliband presumably feels obliged to use them. I hope he will step up and make some changes, but I don’t think he should be doing it now – it will send the wrong signals to the people, it may be too late. In the short term they should just be told to STFU :)

    You know where I stand (Green, former Labour) and I am not willing to perpetuate the division between those on the left. My main concern is those in highly visible positions of focus in the Shadow Cabinet, along with those in the background who still have the media’s ear like Blair, Mandelson and Milburn are not helping Ed. I think that’s a far bigger concern for losing votes than a few seats where Greens may undermine the Labour vote.

    Please keep up the great topical posts – they are going to help make a very long 100 days (99 now!) more interesting.

  30. Chris January 28, 2015 at 7:31 pm - Reply

    Rachel Reeves is Labour Work and Pensions. Did not know, do not care. This lady mentions absolutely nothing about the total losses coming to the poorest, especially women, from the con that is the flat rate pension, presided over by the Lib Dems Pensions Minister, Mr Steve Webb, to millions retiring from next year.

    With the Lib Dems could have just as easily gone into coalition with Labour in 2010.

    See why under my petiton, in my WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT section, at:

    It will be as big a scandal as the married women’s NI stamp, but equally hitting men and women, save for one difference.

    Women tend to be poorer than men and have been hit by cuts in maternity pay, child tax credits, pension and welfare reform, and overwhelmingly being low waged, part time, zero contracts.

    Women are not all in a relationship being looked after by a wealthy husband as believed by politicians.

    We are poor, sick, disabled, alone, denied state pension at 60 just as the biggest number became eligible, on works pensions as low as £60 per week fromt he massive austerity cuts, majority of public sector workers on wages far below a living wage, and lialbe for benefit sanctions, workfare, disability and chronic sick benefits cut and Bedroom tax by raised retirement age.

    So why is Labour merely running neck and neck with the Tories in the polls, with Tories at 282 seats and Labour at 280.

    The Lib Dems are predicted to keep 28 seats, when the last by election they did not even get 400 votes and came below The Greens.

    You watch. I’ve been watching SY.RIZ.A. If The Greens bring out policies hidden away, Labour is history.

    So why were not those policies Labour, surging now ahead to solve starvation and homelessness in the direct descendants of the voters who invented Labour at great risk to their lives?

  31. Brian Eastment January 29, 2015 at 12:54 am - Reply

    She must be brain dead to loose this open goal by the Tories. The Blair Babes title did worry me that we never grow up and become proper Socialists when the glits wore off.

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