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The "Blairite" Labour manifesto is reportedly targeting Middle England - but can we believe it any more than the 2005 manifesto?

Picture 8 The papers this morning suggest that the Labour manifesto being unveiled today is Blairite in its nature, and very much targeted at the Middle England voters who deserted the Tories in 1997 and helped deliver three Labour election victories for Tony Blair.

The Independent suggests that Labour would adopt a Blairite "reforming zeal" on the heath service by "transferring power over every hospital to local managers, while hospitals that fail to raise standards within three years will be taken over."

The Guardian expands on that theme by suggesting that "more than 1,000 mediocre or failing secondary schools will be taken over to drive up standards" and that the same would go for inadequate police forces as well.

The Telegraph highlights the likely pledges on tackling anti-social behaviour, whilst the Times majors on the Labour demand that all public sector workers will be expected to speak English.

Ed Miliband, the Energy and Climate Change Secretary who wrote Labour's manifesto, has claimed that it would not include "big spending commitments" and appeared to push the message that it was a Blairite document, saying:

"It will be more like a 1997 manifesto than a 2001 or 2005 manifesto." 

Later on I will link to the document once it is published, but in the meantime the Conservatives have published this document pointing out that of the pledges in the 2005 Labour manifesto, over 100 have been broken, such as:

  • ‘Full employment in every region and nation’
  • ‘A 20 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions on 1990 levels by 2010’ 
  • ‘We will end child poverty, starting by halving it ... by 2010-11’ 
  • ‘Everyone up to the age of 19 should be learning’ 
  • ‘All women will have choice over where and how they have their baby’ 
  • ‘[Home ownership] to have risen by another million to two million’

It's definitely worth reading the full document to ascertain just how badly this Government failed to do what it promised.

12.30pm update:

Labour's manifesto is online here.

Jonathan Isaby