Osborne making his spending review statement pic.twitter.com/GeC6KVmkwC
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) June 26, 2013
He’s becoming more like Gordon Brown at every turn
The thing that struck me most about Osborne’s spending review statement was how little it had to do with the economics and how much it was about setting the political backcloth for GE2015.
In this, of course, you have to remember that as shadow chancellor, first under Michael Howard and then under Cameron, Osborne sat across the chamber from Gordon Brown – the past-master of making everything political.
Firstly there was no need to have a statement at all at this stage. It could have waited at least a year but Osborne’s objective was creating elephant traps for Ed Balls who knows more than anybody else how the Brown Chancellorship worked.
I switched off my initial notion that this was a serious statement when almost at the start Osbo used that appalling Brown cliche, “hard-working families”.
Then we went into all the attacks on Labour’s and Ed Balls’s record which we’ve heard so many times before that they are starting to lose their potency.
A much quieter speech with less of the political rhetoric and much more of the economic analysis was what the occasion demanded.
Osborne comes over as too political for his own good – for as soon as as people start thinking that then he’s failed. He’s just another politico trying to hang on to his job.
All this is offset by the fact that his opposite number, Ed Balls, is precisely the same.
But does politics have to be like this?
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