Leaked party lines for new year attack both Tories and Labour on economy and only Lib Dems committed to fair society
The Liberal Democrats are to attack their Conservative coalition partners in the new year by telling voters they can’t be trusted to look after the interests of normal people and are focused only protecting the very rich.
A leaked script of party lines to take in the media urges MPs, candidates and councillors to say that only the Lib Dems are committed to building a fair society. It was distributed by the Lib Dem director of communications, Tim Snowball, who appealed for recipients to “communicate from this script at every opportunity”.
The document is evidence of the Lib Dems’ efforts to carve out a distinct identity for themselves in the 18 months before the 2015 general election, building on Nick Clegg’s own message in recent months that only the Lib Dems can deliver both a strong economy and a fair society.
The deputy prime minister used his new year message this week to say he would anchor the coalition in the centre-ground in 2013.
The script also says Labour can’t be trusted to manage the economy, having “nearly bankrupted Britain”, but it is the strident tone on the Tories that is most notable given the potential for inflaming coalition tensions.
“The Conservatives can’t be trusted to build a fair society. Until the Lib Dems got into government, no one could stop the Tories from looking after the super rich who fund their party, while ignoring the needs of normal people who struggle to make ends meet,” according to the document.
It goes on to list Tory plans that the Lib Dems have blocked, including relaxing the law on hiring and firing employees, cutting inheritance tax and allowing schools to be “run for profit”.
“Let’s never go back to the way things were, because Labour can’t be trusted with your money, and the Tories can’t be trusted to build a fair society,” it says.
The document, which was obtained and published by the Liberator blog, was attached to a message from Snowball saying that Clegg’s new year message was “the first full external use” of the party’s message script.
It is based on research by Ryan Coetzee, an adviser to Clegg, and consultation with “many party stakeholders”.
“If we all stick to and get some volume behind this script, by this time next year our voters will know that the Liberal Democrats are building a stronger economy in a fairer society, enabling every person to get on in life,” Snowball wrote.
“So, if you make one New Year resolution this year, please make it to help us be ‘On Message, In Volume, Over Time’ and communicate from this script at every opportunity.”