June 23rd last year was a day many politicos will never forget. It showed the level of anger at the European political establishment and the radical change much of the electorate want to see from the Government here in the UK.
The Conservative manifesto did not offer the change many felt would happen when they rebelled on June 23rd and voted to shake up the political class. May’s modest manifesto should have pledged radical, popular policies, but instead attacked her core vote and offered no hope to the people of Britain.
The campaign run by CCHQ has been highly criticised in recent days, the party should be looking to radically change the way it works. Sadly, from the appointments made in recent days, it looks like it’s business as usual.
The party should look to re-structure its regional offices and give Wales more control over it’s own campaigns, in a similar way to how the Scottish Conservatives work. Welsh CCHQ and the Conservatives in Cardiff Bay need to work on a much closer level in order to synchronise a new message to appeal to the Welsh electorate.
If the Conservative Party has fought on a more positive manifesto that gave people hope, there is no doubt it would have won this election by a landslide. Sadly, it was Jeremy Corbyn who took the initiative ran a campaign of hope that appealed to much of the British electorate.
Here are seven policies which should have been pledged:
- Breakup the energy companies and monopolies. Show people why and how it will help people.
- Focus on freeing business and industry. Retool education so everyone has a path to a better job.
- Promise to get the deficit and debt down. How? Capitalism. A rampant economy solves the problem.
- Upon leaving the EU. Ban unskilled migration into the UK for a period of five years.
- Bin visible austerity. It isn’t popular after the Great Crash. Emphasise freeing the economy so the debt and deficit fall without cutting safety nets many feel they deserve after the crash and banker bailouts.
- Pledge to build over two million new homes, with a new Government sponsored initiative to help people fund a mortgage deposit.
- Appeal to the youth. Those in full-time work under the age of 23 will pay no income tax. This will give them a chance to save to enter the housing ladder and invest in their own future.
If the Conservative Party adopt ideas such as those above they will see a broadening in their support, especially amongst young voters and the aspirational working class.
Matthew Mackinnon, Co-Director for Centre for Welsh Studies.