Mansfield MP says Labour leader is 'way off' with call for more Government control

This week, the Prime Minister will lay out plans for us to hopefully move beyond Covid.

Monday, 22nd February 2021, 10:00 am

I think it’s about time we get back to a position where we restore some kind of sensible balance between Government and individuals, and look to build an economic recovery that unleashes people’s innovation and autonomy.The Prime Minister is absolutely right that this must be the last lockdown, that we must cautiously begin to open up as the vaccine takes hold and the risks fall, and we must ensure that there is no going back.

Personally, and in my experience of the conversations I’ve had in recent months, I think people are just about ready for Government to butt out and let them get on with their lives.

Ironically the leader of the Opposition, Sir Keir Starmer, spent last week saying the opposite.

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Ben Bradley says Sir Keir Starmer's call for 'bigger' Government is not what the people want

He used a speech last week to say that Covid is proof that we need ‘bigger’ Government with more intervention, more meddling, less personal choice and freedom.

He wants to tell us that this crisis is evidence that we actually need a socialist Government.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think he’s way off.If we’re to really get to grips with recovery and to create jobs, then we need to give people the freedom to do it.

We need to roll back the ‘state control’ that has grown up through Covid and give businesses the chance to innovate and grow.

We recognise the inequalities that exist in this country and the challenges of different geographies and communities, so we need to support the places that most need help through job creation, through skills and investment in infrastructure.

What we don’t need though, is more Government.

We don’t need more politicians telling people what to do or limiting people’s freedoms.

We need to roll that back and restore some kind of sensible balance.

In calling for an interfering and controlling ‘big state’, Sir Keir Starmer could not be more wrong about the way forward.

As the Prime Minister lays our plans for the future this week, and in the coming weeks, we are set for a better year and a chance to put things back together again.

Writing this before his announcements early in the week, I’m optimistic that the data looks far better and we can look to the future – a future where we can get our freedoms back and take the first steps on the road to recovery.

Ben Bradley is MP for Mansfield.