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Mortgage Interest Payments

Part of Orders of the Day — Finance Bill – in the House of Commons at 8:15 pm on 15th July 1997.

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Photo of Geraint Davies Geraint Davies Labour, Croydon Central 8:15 pm, 15th July 1997

The point is well made.

The Conservative party pretends that it is the friend of the home owner. Under the previous Government, home owners suffered the biggest negative equity in history and there were more repossessions than during the highland clearances. No wonder the Prime Minister said what he said, which Conservative Members have taken out of context. When the housing market was in chaos because of the short-termism of Conservative policy, naturally he said that that was not the time to reduce MIRAS, particularly given the wider economic problems that they had created, but the situation has changed.

Conservative Members talk about trust and say that, before the election, they did not know precisely every detail of what Labour was going to do. Of course they did not. There is no historical precedent for that. A newly elected Government will not have a plan for all the five years of the Parliament, detailing everything that they will do. We gave the thrust of what we were going to do, which was about putting people back to work, creating conditions for economic strength and creating a fairer and better Britain to face the new millennium.