THE CHANCELLOR says that Reading East is “very lucky” to have Craig Morley as their candidate as he would support a Conservative government that would take Britain out of the EU.
Sajid Javid made the comments as he visited a pub and a butchers in the constituency on Monday, November 18.
“Craig is a fantastic choice,” he told The Wokingham Paper. “He’s already accomplished in so many ways, but it’s someone that can deliver for local people and that matters a lot with the local issues that matter, whether it’s around your local infrastructure, the needs of the local NHS and schools, getting more police on the streets, but also nationally, he can deliver for our country by supporting a Conservative government that will keep the economy strong.”
During his visit to The Moderation pub in Caversham, Mr Javid spoke with landlords Andy and Yodphathai Becalick, poured a pint for regulars and drummed up support for the candidate who is hoping to snatch the seat from Labour’s Matt Rodda.
Mr Javid also spoke about the Conservative’s plans.
“The one thing I am always very aware of as a Conservative Chancellor is that the only reason we can support all these great public services that we all rely on – the NHS, schools, more police on the streets – is because you have a dynamic business economy, these businesses that generate the wealth that pays for these public services,” he said.
“So we are very clear we are the party of business.”
And he had a vision for the party’s future if it is elected on December 12.
“First of all, we need to get Brexit done. There’s a lot of uncertainty [over the issue] and uncertainty is not good for any business. It doesn’t matter if you’re a local pub or big manufacturer, you don’t want uncertainty. We can get Brexit done as Conservatives and we can do that with a deal, which is what people want to see.
“We’re the only party going into this election that can guarantee that if we get a majority, we will leave the EU with a deal within weeks of coming to office and that will bring a lot of certainty to businesses.
“The second thing is we’re proud of all the tax cuts will have for businesses, since we came into office in 2010, the sensible approach we’ve taken to regulation, the investment in skills, apprenticeships and all these things that matter to business. And as a result, we’ve got a thriving economy.
“We have forecasted growth for example, faster next year than Italy, than Germany and Japan.
“All of this doesn’t happen by accident, it happens if you have a Government as on the side of business, and that’s a fundamental choice of this election. If you elect local candidates like Craig Morley here in Reading East, that that makes a big difference to what we can achieve for our country.
“What’s the alternative? The Conservatives will get Brexit done and keep the economy strong. It doesn’t matter who else you vote for – the only alternative to us is Jeremy Corbyn in Downing Street, and just imagine, you wake up on Friday, the 13th of December, with the nightmare of Jeremy Corbyn in Downing Street.
“Just imagine how you’d feel on a day like that and what it would mean for our country, both in terms of our business, in terms of our national security, and so much more. So that’s the option, and to win we need the majority that’s why we need to take this seat back and get Craig elected so we can have that Conservative majority.”
He was also sticking to the party’s claims that Labour’s manifesto would add almost £2,500 a year to each person, although Labour’s manifesto has not yet been released and the party has promised to include spending details when it does so.
Mr Javid said: “We’ve costed Labour’s spending commitments – £1.2 trillion extra they plan to spend over the next Parliament that will result first in a net debt crisis because they’re gonna have to borrow, by their own admission, hundreds of billions of pounds more in debt, and leave us with a debt crisis.
“And also at the same time, they’ll be trying to fill a black hole with more taxes. They’ve planned at least 21 new taxes, and that’s going to mean for the average person an extra £2,400 a year that will be paying in tax.”
Wokingham Borough Council has, in recent years, been lobbying the government after its support grant was reduced to zero, meaning that it has had to find alternative ways to meet its obligations, including its property investments and implementing the 21st Century Council programme. With demand increasing on adult and children’s social care, what comfort can Mr Javid offer borough residents?
“Local government provides vital services that we all rely on and it’s important that all properly funded,” he said. “That’s one of the reasons why, in the last local government financial settlement, we gave the biggest increase the local government in 10 years.
“And when I recently did a spending round about three months ago, I supported local government with their needs around social care, which is one of our biggest services they provide locally, with a £1.5 billion injection – which is more than they asked for.
“Now, we’re able to provide that support to local government but again we can only do it if we keep the economy strong. If Labour gets in and crashes the economy will all pay the price through local government services and hardworking people will pay the price through the job market.”
After visiting The Moderation, Mr Javid also visited The Caversham Butcher in St Martin’s Precinct. He took time to speak with the owners, Mo Benassar and Roland Hazell.
“It’s wonderful to see the chancellor here today and it’s lovely to see him coming and supporting small businesses,” Mr Hazell said. “The Conservative Party run the country properly and then, and they spend accordingly. They don’t overspend. Looking at some of these Labour policies, going forward, look pretty horrendous so the money they’re going to spend.”
Mr Hazell was also pleased about the potential rates cut announced last week: “It puts money back into the public’s pockets, that’s a good thing.”
And Reading East Conservative candidate Craig Morley said it had been fantastic that the chancellor had visited his Reading East constituency.
“It shows how important it is for us to win back Reading East,” he told The Wokingham Paper. “It’s a national bellwether constituency, so it’s a key target seat for the Conservatives in this election.
“It’s fantastic to have the support from the local community. I’m from Reading, I grew up here, I was born here. So this constituency really means a lot to me.
“People are coming up, saying they support me in the streets and when I’m knocking on doors.
“We’re getting a very positive feedback, it’s really reassuring and you know it’s fantastic to see that, you know, we’ve been out and about, across the constituency, since the election was called and I’m seeing some real movement and groundswell of support in Reading East.
“Hopefully we can win this constituency back.”
The Conservatives weren’t the only ones to have senior party figures visiting the constituency today. Matt Rodda welcomed shadow health secretary Jon Ashworth.
He tweeted: “Thanks to #Labour’s @JonAshworth for coming to #Rdguk today to highlight the threat to our NHS if the Conservatives are re-elected”.
There are six candidates standing in Reading East. Mitch Feierstein, Brexit Party; David McElroy, Green Party; Craig Morley, Conservative Party; Yemi Awolola, Christian Peoples Alliance; Matt Rodda, Labour Party; Imogen Shepherd-Dubey, Liberal Democrats.