Tag Archives: Owen Smith MP

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on banking

Owen Smith said:

We’ve been keeping the banks afloat in this country. It’s time to start keeping the people afloat in this country.

Facts Owen Smith might want kept quiet:

  • The Deficit: Owen Smith said: “There have to be tough decisions on tax, spending and pay, but without jobs and growth we won’t get the deficit down.”
  • Work Capacity Assessments: Owen Smith said that Labour could not pledge to scrap the WCA because this would make Labour appear weak on benefits in the eyes of the media and compromise Labour’s general-election chances.

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on not splitting Labour

Owen Smith’s Claim

Never on my watch will this party split. We can’t afford to let it split and working people in this country can’t afford to let it split.

The Facts:

  • Election Expenses: The Labour Party spent £56,409.12 trying to get Owen Smith elected in Blaenau Gwent, costing £5.60 per voter. The election was called after the party split on whether there should be an all-women shortlist.
  • Accommodation: Labour spent £11,000 on accommodation trying to get Owen Smith elected, which included the £480-a-week Cwm Bach Farm, at Llangattock, near Crickhowell. The election was called after the party split on whether there should be an all-women shortlist.
  • New Labour: Owen Smith was described as “A dyed-in-the wool New Labourite”
  • Democratic Socialist: Owen Smith was described as a: “democratic socialist” in the service of an American pharmaceutical company seems a pretty impeccable New Labour confection.

Owen Smith’s pledge for closer relationships with members

Owen Smith’s claim:

Labour’s greatest strength is our members. Owen will put members at the forefront of his campaign and his leadership in opposition and in government. He will create a Members Shadow Cabinet so that members can influence the leadership on policy issues.

The Facts:

  • Election Expenses: The Labour Party spent £56,409.12 trying to get Owen Smith elected in Blaenau Gwent, costing £5.60 per voter.
  • Accommodation: Labour spent £11,000 on accommodating trying to get Owen Smith elected, which included the £480-a-week Cwm Bach Farm, at Llangattock, near Crickhowell.
  • New Labour: Owen Smith was described as “A dyed-in-the wool New Labourite”
  • Democratic Socialist: Owen Smith was described as a: “democratic socialist” in the service of an American pharmaceutical company seems a pretty impeccable New Labour confection.

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on Sports Direct

Owen Smith’s Claim:

Mike Ashley should hang his head in shame at this report. Yet it must also be a wake-up call for the whole country.

The Facts:

  • Work Capacity Assessments: Owen Smith said that Labour could not pledge to scrap the WCA because this would make Labour appear weak on benefits in the eyes of the media and compromise Labour’s general-election chances.
  • Democratic Socialist: Owen Smith was described as a: “democratic socialist” in the service of an American pharmaceutical company seems a pretty impeccable New Labour confection.

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on the NHS

Owen Smith’s Claim:

No Government that attempts to destroy the health service can hope to command the support of the British People.

The Facts:

  • In a letter to Members of Parliament of 27 October 2006, Owen Smith said: “We believe (the early day motion) to be based on inaccurate information provided by wholesalers that we have not chosen to partner with … Pfizer ran a competitive appointment process… Other wholesalers…were intimately involved in this process. During this period they did not express any concerns regarding the impact of our reforms on either patients or the NHS. We feel their campaign to mobilise opposition … is entirely motivated by commercial self-interest.
  • According to the 19 July 2006 edition of the Morning Star, Owen Smith claimed that Aneurin Bevan would have been fully behind the Blair government’s “reforms” of the National Health Service.
  • Pay Deal: Owen Smith was paid £200,000-a-year to lobby for the drugs firm, Pfizer.
  • PFI in the NHS: “We’ve had PFI in Wales, we’ve had a hospital built down in Baglan through PFI. If PFI works, then let’s do it. What people want to see are more hospitals, better services.”
  • New Labour: Owen Smith was described as “A dyed-in-the wool New Labourite”
  • Democratic Socialist: Owen Smith was described as a: “democratic socialist” in the service of an American pharmaceutical company seems a pretty impeccable New Labour confection.

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on austerity

Owen Smith’s Claim:

The Labour Party has to be a party that is about investment and not cuts. We have to be anti-austerity and pro prosperity.

The Facts:

  • Pay Deal: Owen Smith was paid £200,000-a-year to lobby for the drugs firm, Pfizer.
  • Tax Breaks: Owen Smith said: “Our jobs plan includes tax breaks
  • Election Expenses: The Labour Party spent £56,409.12 trying to get Owen Smith elected in Blaenau Gwent, costing £5.60 per voter. His independent opponent who won spent £6,756.42.
  • Accommodation: Labour spent £11,000 on accommodation trying to get Owen Smith elected, which included the £480-a-week Cwm Bach Farm, at Llangattock, near Crickhowell.
  • Work Capacity Assessments: Owen Smith said that Labour could not pledge to scrap the WCA because this would make Labour appear weak on benefits in the eyes of the media and compromise Labour’s general-election chances.

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on a War Powers Act

Owen Smith’s Claim:

After Chilcot, we need a War Powers Act that allows Parliament to properly scrutinise the Government of the day.

The Facts:

  • New Labour: Owen Smith was described as “A dyed-in-the wool New Labourite”
  • After the Iraq War: Owen Smith said: “We are making significant inroads in improving what is happening in Iraq.”
  • Removing Dictators: “I thought at the time the tradition of the Labour Party and the tradition of left-wing engagement to remove dictators was a noble, valuable tradition, and one that in South Wales, from the Spanish Civil War onwards, we have recognised and played a part in.
  • Voting on the Iraq War: Owen Smith didn’t know in 2006 whether he would have voted against the war.

Evaluating Owen Smith’s pledge on an ethical foreign policy

Owen Smith’s Claim:

The Labour party is always a party that believes in peace and internationalism above everything else. War is only ever a very last resort for us. But we are not a pacifist party

Owen Smith’s CLaim:

Owen will lead an ethical foreign policy, including the introduction of a new War Powers Act to ensure Parliament has the opportunity to scrutinise the Government of the day if conflict is being proposed.

The Facts:

  • Trident: Owen Smith, New Labour’s candidate, came out in opposition to the Trident nuclear deterrent which Gordon Brown had just endorsed.
  • After the Iraq War: Owen Smith said: “We are making significant inroads in improving what is happening in Iraq.”
  • Removing Dictators: “I thought at the time the tradition of the Labour Party and the tradition of left-wing engagement to remove dictators was a noble, valuable tradition, and one that in South Wales, from the Spanish Civil War onwards, we have recognised and played a part in.
  • Voting on the Iraq War: Owen Smith didn’t know in 2006 whether he would have voted against the war.