Vince Cable was up talking to the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce the other night. Afterwards, he talks about his memories of the Tories in power in the 80s, and how the Liberal Democrats are there to stop them doing the same thing again. This is what he said:
“I remember the negative side of Thatcherism - the Poll Tax, mass unemployment and the claims that there was no such thing as society.
I was a councillor in Glasgow in the 1970s and valued the progressive tradition of Scottish politics.
That’s why I’m glad the Tories aren’t in power by themselves at Westminster.
We have stopped the Tories behaving like they did under Thatcher.
We stopped them from introducing their plans to cut taxes for millionaires. Instead we have cut the taxes for people on middle and low incomes and increased capital gains tax, to stop the loopholes used by many, very wealthy people.
Let me be blunt. After Labour abandoned their responsibility for clearing up the financial mess, the Liberal Democrats had to put people and families first, and form a government that worked in the national interest.
As Business Secretary I am working for growth and jobs and the revival of manufacturing – a different approach from the 1980s.
In the House of Commons we are 267 seats short of an overall majority on our own; 92 per cent of MPs are against us.
But Liberal Democrats have core values about treating people and families fairly, and have won the abolition of income tax for 71,000 of the lowest paid Scots this month and reduced tax for another two million people in Scotland. It’s why we’ve increased pensions by restoring their link to earnings.
If the Conservatives were ruling by themselves none of this would have happened.
We have seen a glimpse in the last few days of what they would be like on their own.
Liberal Democrats have stopped that. We have made the difference.”