How can George Osborne hold down another job?
- Credit: PA
Two weeks ago, Chancellor Philip Hammond noted that this was his last Spring Budget as from now on budgets would be in autumn, writes Ipswich Borough Council leader David Ellesmere.
He also joked that the last Chancellor to try and do this was sacked within weeks.
That probably doesn’t seem quite so funny now given the almighty mess-up he has made of his first Budget.
There is now a £2 billion hole in the Government’s finances following the humiliating u-turn over National Insurance Contributions.
The increase in NICs was clearly a breach of a promise made in the Conservative election manifesto.
Twenty-seven supposedly intelligent ministers - who all stood on this manifesto less than two years ago - attend Cabinet meetings, but not one of them recognised this when the Budget was presented to them.
These are the people who are going to be negotiating Brexit on our behalf.
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On the same theme, David Davis, the minister responsible for negotiating Brexit last week admitted that when Theresa May said: “no deal is better than a bad deal”, this was on the basis of no evidence whatsoever.
The Government hasn’t bothered to do an analysis of the impact of coming out of Europe without a deal. It could be OK. It could be very bad. They just don’t know.
But that is their fallback position if they mess up the Brexit negotiations.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that they are just making this up as they go along.
It’s not as if Conservative MPs are devoting all their time to the biggest issue facing our country.
Look at George Osborne, who has just announced his sixth job.
He will now edit the London Evening Standard for four days a week - salary unknown, experience nil.
This is on top of his £650,000 job for an investment firm plus his £800,000-a-year speaking engagements, lecturing at the University of Arizona and chairing the “Northern Powerhouse Partnership”.
Oh, and he’s also an MP getting paid £75,000 each year by you and me.
There’s no way he can do all these jobs and represent his constituents properly.
He should resign as an MP now.