Daily Archives: September 12, 2012

Jim Pickard

Whether by design or by chance, (probably the latter), the one issue David Cameron would prefer not to talk about today will have slipped many people’s minds by the time of the evening headlines: Britain’s debt mountain.

But this does not mean that the issue will not revert to the top of the agenda in the coming months.

The issue was eclipsed mainly by the prime minister’s magisterial statement on the Hillsborough disaster, which is set to be the big political story of the day. The report’s revelations about doctored documents and attempts to smear the deceased were read out to a silent Commons straight after prime minister’s questions.

During PMQs itself Ed Miliband sought to nail down Cameron over the big debt issue but the prime minister successfully swerved away from the subject.

The government has two fiscal targets.

1] It intends to get rid of the structural deficit by the end of a five-year period. That has conveniently already slipped from 2015/15 to 2016/17.

2] Debt as a proportion of GDP should have fallen by 2015. Unfortunately for the coalition, this target is not flexible at all.

The PM’s spokesman insisted this morning that the fiscal mandate was still on track.

But Miliband repeatedly warned that the government was going to miss its Read more

Jim Pickard

Here is the full statement from David Cameron to the House of Commons over the Hillsborough tragedy:

Today the Bishop of Liverpool, the Rt Reverend James Jones, is publishing the report of the Hillsborough Independent Panel.

The disaster at the Hillsborough football stadium on 15th April 1989 was one of the greatest peacetime tragedies of the last century.

96 people died as a result of a crush in the Leppings Lane Terrace at the FA Cup Semi-Final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.

There was a public Inquiry at the time by Lord Justice Taylor which found – and I quote – that the main cause of the disaster was “a failure of police control.”

But the Inquiry didn’t have access to all the documents that have since become available…

…it didn’t properly examine the response of the emergency services …

…it was followed by a deeply controversial inquest…

…and by a media version of events that sought to blame the fans.

As a result, the families have not heard the truth and have not found justice.

That is why the previous government – and in particular – the Rt

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