Legal aid in, tuition fees out: Labour’s leaked manifesto

Jeremy Corbyn promises the world

Labour will abolish university tuition fees and reintroduce maintenance grants for students if it wins the general election on 8 June, its draft manifesto claims.

In the 51-page document leaked to the media this morning, the Labour Party sets out its pledges on education, stating:

Labour believes education should be free, and we will restore this principle. No one should be put off educating themselves for lack of money through fear of debt.

It continues: “there is a real fear that students are being priced out of university education. Last year saw the steepest fall in university applications for thirty years. Since the conservatives came to power university fees have trebled over £9,000 a year, and maintenance grants have been abolished and replaced with loans. The average student now graduates from university, and starts their working life, with debts of £44,000.”

Despite its chunky education pledges, noticeably absent from the Labour manifesto — which was due to be signed off on Thursday — is any mention of the highly controversial Higher Education and Research Bill. The bill passed through the House of Commons in the final days before parliament shut up shop on 3 May to make way for the election. If given royal assent, the bill hopes to dramatically open up the university “market”, and could pave the way for a Trump University this side of the Atlantic.

The party also pledges to “immediately” re-establish legal aid in family law cases and in preparing judicial review cases. The manifesto wholeheartedly supports judicial review, which it sees as a weapon against the entrenched elite:

Judicial review is an important way of holding government to account. We believe that judges should not be denied the opportunity to check excessive abuse of executive power by the establishment.

If Labour defies the polls and clinches victory in the general election, this judicial review pledge could open the door to more cases like that launched by Gina Miller last autumn. The fund manager successfully argued before both the High Court and the Supreme Court that parliament must have a vote on whether Article 50 should be triggered. Her challenge was privately funded by the likes of Pimlico Plumbers’ Charlie Mullins.

As well as the pledges on legal aid in judicial review and family law, the ‘Justice’ section includes initiatives to establish an environmental tribunal and introduce no-fault divorces. It also has assurances that it will not tamper with the Human Rights Act.

Under its election slogan: “For the many not for the few”, the leaked draft even finds the space to quote Tony Blair, choosing a cracking line from the 1995 conference:

We still need to be tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime too.

Read the leaked manifesto in full below:

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33 Comments

Anonymous

Thankfully, the Conservative government is not funded by other people’s money, and has spent all of their income wisely without making legislative changes that cost more than they save.

Or was it the other thing?

(16)(14)
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Anonymous

Struggling to bring spending within the limits needed, and meeting only limited success, largely because of the opprobrium heaped on any kind of “cut”, is not the same as deliberate tax & spend, borrow & spend, print & spend socialism, though, is it?

(6)(4)
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Corbyn. Sympathiser.

The problem with Thatcherism is you eventually run out of state-owned entities to privatise and flog to your wealthy donors for a pittance.

(34)(6)
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Ginger Beer Snail

As a student myself, I’m not at all in favour of this pledge. Having to pay my own £40k loan AND pay for everyone’s tuition fees is crazy.

I’m all for free and well funded state primary/secondary education, but university is not for everybody and it never should be advocated as such.

(28)(12)
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Anonymous

Standard labour, let’s tax success and make our markets less competitive at a crucial time, whilst spending money on frivolous things.

Surprised Corbyn hasn’t agreed to sign over the Falklands and Gibraltar.

Bring forth a ban on career politicians.

(12)(21)
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Anonymous

Agreed – surely voting to scrap tuition fees must also include a vote to wipe student debt’s clear?

Otherwise it’s a bit like being in prison for an act that has been decriminalised.

(21)(1)
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Socialist of Counsel

No, standard Labour is “don’t let the wealthy get away with shafting the vast majority of hardworking people who generate the wealth in the first place.”

The problems in this country are caused by monstrous inequality.

A fully equal society is neither possible nor desirable, but can anyone explain to me why it’s OK that over 30% of residential properties in London lie empty as investments, pushing up the already crippling rents elsewhere, whilst there are homeless people and hardworking people paying most of their income to share a room?

Why is that OK, Toryboys? Why?

(19)(2)
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Anonymous

Based on 5 seconds on Google I come across a statement from May 2016 put out by the charity ‘Empty Homes’. They claim “almost 57,000 homes in London stand empty”.

It would appear from census data that there are around 3.3 million homes. Therefore, according to charities which support your argument, around 1.72% of residential properties in London lie empty (not even close to your claimed 30%).

This is the problem with the left. You are terrible at maths.

(12)(13)
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Anonymous

Actually I take it back – not fair enough. After a little longer on Google I found the charity’s data.

http://www.emptyhomes.com/assets/empty-homes-in-england-final-september-2016.pdf

As you can see, the charity gives their numbers as: 3.3 million homes in “London” and 59,000 empty homes in “London”. The map indicates that by London they mean Greater London. The charity states themselves that the percentage of empty homes in London is 1.71% (exactly the same as I calculated). Or do you claim that the Empty Homes charity are also guilty of manipulating figures?

Out of interest, was Diane Abbott your maths tutor?

(4)(3)
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Anonymous

Whatever way it works out, is 59,000 empty homes in London an acceptable figure? I think it is not. Although you may calaculate is as something under 2%, that still likely represents a couple of properties on every street.

Although this source claims there are over 60,000 streets within 6 miles of Charing Cross:

http://www.the-london-taxi.com/london_taxi_knowledge

(0)(0)
Pantman

You should ask these questions – it is a reasonable point. Don’t asume you know the answer in order to argue against fee-free education.

(0)(0)
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Tim

“Jeremy Corbyn promises the world”

Well, if this extreme far-right Tory government can afford Trident, HS2, tax cuts for millionaires, the Royal Family, endless wars up and down the globe, universal privatisation etc, etc, then Corbyn’s entitled to propose some sensible alternatives that, like, actually benefit the public.

The right’s magic money tree makes the left’s magic money tree seem like a stunted bonsai.

(26)(17)
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Anonymous

“this extreme far-right Tory government” – Dave Spart speaks.

Power to the People! Hail the Tooting Popular Front!

Fuck sake.

(3)(3)
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Pantman

Attempting to increase profitability in the Royal Mail – by puting up postal prices – is a good example of the country ending up being taxed in other ways, and the profits ending up in the pockets of corporations. Some things are natural monopolies – education, policing, health, defence, roads, railways, postal services… – except in the most extraordinary circumstances these should be owned and controlled by the state.

(3)(0)
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Don't delay- call today!

Nah. I recon policing should be opened up to competition.

Think of it:

For free policing dial 999. You will get a crime reference number.

For premium policing dial 911. For a series of reasonable fixed fees or subscriptions, services you can get include:

Bronze Plan:

– Emergency call answered within 10 minutes.

– Half hour visit from a PCSO.

– Basic SOCO/ investigation.

– Regular updates.

Silver Plan:

– All of the above plus “premium” investigation, following up all leads and theories to your satisfaction.

– Reserved front-row seats (with complimentary refreshments) at any court hearing.

Gold plan:

– Bobby on the beat in your residential street.

– Monthly dinner with the Chief Constable (golf an optional extra).

– Chance to beat the crap out of the suspect.

Personalised felt tip pen just for enquiring!

(2)(0)
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Doc. Ludvig Friedrich Von Lowenstein

Not bad LC. You seem to do better on big political issues, rather than law or mental health. I would definitely avoid all medical topics, unless its written by someone qualified.

(2)(0)
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Anonymous

Voting tory is a bit like turkeys voting for Christmas. ……

I assume everyone here has parents, grandparents, siblings…..God forbid they get older and get cancer / dementia / diabetes etc…..wait until one of your loved ones has some health problem and you’ll realise (i) how painful and hurtful it is to see (ii) how it has a ripple effect on everyone’s lives – including carer responsibilities for yourself and (iii) how neglected the nhs is by tories (iv) abused it is by SOME eu migrants who have come here with no job, no NI contributions, no criminal record check and full entitlement for themselves, 4 kids, grandma, grandad, aunt, uncle, cousin. The scale of eu migration across the uk has put public services under immense pressure. It is a group that is not self – supporting in tax revenue and yet a consumer of all public services and state benefits. The absorption of eu migrants would be acceptable if there was a subsidy from the eu to cover the costs, but there isn’t.

– Contrast this with non eu migrants who are required to have a job before coming to the UK, have no immediate entitlement to state benefits, and neec a full criminal recird check, which is a sensible approach. It was an acknowledged problem by the pro-eu David Cameron, who tried to negotiate for more restricted state entitlements for unemployed eu migrants at the 2016 negotiations (no permission from eu to do this), because the country can’t support the cost of an unproductive population. There should be a fair and non discriminatory approach to immigration whether eu or not.

NHS is neglected – by tories who want to sell it off the service contracts to their chums. An extremely short – term approach, with zero guarantee of better service or value for money.

A non – partisan, non political (both a doctor and finance manager in the nhs) expert gave evidence before a select committee and stated that if national insurance contributions were to be raised by just 5pence per person, the nhs would no longer be in a state of “humanitarian crisis” – as per the British Red Cross.

Lastly, having an NHS is not wishy-washy altruism or “being nice for the sake of being nice” – it has long term economic benefits. A healthy and productive population are able to work and have successful lives and contribute to society – in ceased tax revenues, GDP and other economic metrics. Also, a study comparing the US and the UK showed that people on the UK were encouraged to be more entrepreneurial and start their own businesses creating more economic wealth and employment for others in the community because they had an NHS in place for themselves and their family. By contrast, in the US, entrepreneurs were far less likely to leave their jobs and start their own businesses because they could not afford to pay private medical insurance for themselves and their families – a chilling effect on the growth of the economy.

(14)(6)
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Anonymous

“A non – partisan, non political (both a doctor and finance manager in the nhs) expert gave evidence before a select committee and stated that if national insurance contributions were to be raised by just 5pence per person, the nhs would no longer be in a state of “humanitarian crisis” – as per the British Red Cross.”

The NHS asked the government for 10 billion additional funding. The government gave the NHS 10 billion extra funding.

I’m bored of the left – all it is is hyperbole and bad maths.

(6)(14)
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Pantman

If there is enough funding why are there healthcare trusts on the brink of bankruptcy?

it is either because of underfunding, or bad management. In both cases the government bears responsibility.

(2)(0)
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Air Hair Lair

I expressed concern to my Tory MP about post Brexit funding for new medicines, he told me it was nothing to do with MP’s!

Tax the rich. Is it such a bad idea?
I pay loads of tax in my modest business, why should the big boys get away with it?

(2)(0)
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Air Hair Lair

That 10 billion figure has been exposed as a lie.

Left wing , right wing , doesn’t matter . Tories leave huge holes in public services in order to help themselves, their donors and the very rich.

They are taking money off helpless disabled people and then preaching Christian values!

Sorry you’re bored of the left and their bad maths. I could list the number of times Tories have broken or intended to oppose the rule of Law in the last 6 months, but I can’t count that high.

(2)(1)
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