General Election Campaign Update

Author: Corey McDowell - Economics Editor

Published: 2 Dec 2019

Last Updated: 2 Feb 2023


The general election roadshow continues on but plenty of controversy is sticking like mud to the main political parties.

The general election roadshow continues on but plenty of controversy is sticking like mud to the main political parties. Last Thursday, the respected Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) published its analysis of the manifestos and it was unrelenting in its criticism of the Conservatives and Labour, questioning how realistic some of their proposed policies are:

“While the Conservatives continue to pretend that tax rises will never be needed to secure decent public services, Labour pretends that huge increases in spending can be financed by just big companies and the rich... neither Labour nor the Conservatives [are] being honest with the electorate.” 

The Liberal Democrats’ manifesto also has not escaped scrutiny, with the IFS describing it as “a radical document” with its proposals for significant tax and spending increases. Rather depressingly, it seems the main political parties think that the issues facing the electorate can be solved by throwing money at the problems in the hope that they will go away.

Elsewhere on the campaign trail, the relations between the Conservatives and the press have deteriorated with accusations that the leader of the Conservatives, Alexander Johnson (aka “Boris”), is shying away from media scrutiny. Mr Johnson, alongside Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage, were both notably absent from the Channel 4 live debate on the environment and Mr Johnson has also refused to confirm if he will agree to an interview with esteemed journalist Andrew Neil. On a more sobering note, the recent attack on London Bridge has brought a more sombre tone to campaigning and the parties have faced pressing questions on their respective positions on law and order. This has not prevented some politicians from all sides of the political spectrum from point-scoring though.

Just 10 days remain until polling day and the main parties are intensifying their campaigns. The Sterling price of gold has been a little bit more volatile this week, perhaps influenced by public reaction to the parties’ manifestos and changes in voting intentions shown by polling data. Gold has dropped marginally over the last seven days by 0.28% to leave it trading at £1128.71 per troy ounce.

The IFS press release can be found here.

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