Kevan Jones: Will the Minister give way?
Kevan Jones: I am sorry that the Cameron Kool-Aid is now being handed round again in the Conservative party. I ask the Minister to look at the facts—
Kevan Jones: Look at the National Audit Office report of 2010. What it said on the equipment budget, not the overall budget, was that on its current basis the figure would be £6 billion. If there was no increase in line with inflation over a 10-year period, the figure would be £36 billion, not £38 billion—
Kevan Jones: On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker—
Kevan Jones: I am sorry—
Kevan Jones: It is a serious point of order. The right hon. Gentleman gave way to me, and then he stood up when I had not finished. But the serious point is that what he is saying is not true—not the facts—and as a Minister, he should not be actually saying that.
Kevan Jones: Further to that point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. All I am saying is that accurate information must be given. If the Minister looks at the NAO report from 2010, he will see the actual figure, instead of the bluster which he keeps—
Kevan Jones: rose—
Kevan Jones: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. Is it in order for one Member to accuse another Member of something that is not true and then not allow that Member to respond to it?
Kevan Jones: I am not going to get into a discussion. What is not true is what the hon. Gentleman just said about cutting support for veterans.
Kevan Jones: I was proud to introduce the Army Recovery Capability, which made sure we supported the armed forces coming back from Afghanistan and Iraq with severe injuries. I was proud to be a part of a Labour Government who introduced the Armed Forces (Pensions and Compensation) Act 2004, which for the first time brought in lump sum payments for those severely injured. The track record of our...
Kevan Jones: I thought that the Tory party’s script had changed; obviously the hon. Gentleman does not have the new one. Will he explain, therefore—
Kevan Jones: He needs to sit down.
Kevan Jones: The Government were able to find £1 billion out of fresh air to pass over in their agreement with the Democratic Unionist party in Northern Ireland so that they could stay in power, so why can they not fund the pay of our armed forces?
Kevan Jones: This year, not last year.
Kevan Jones: I am sorry, but what the hon. Gentleman is saying is just wrong. Over the past six years, the Government have completely ignored the pay review body. I do not know where he gets the idea—I must have missed this—that the Government are going to accept its future recommendations, because I am not aware of such an announcement.
Kevan Jones: Does my hon. Friend agree that the pay cut over the past seven years will have an ongoing effect throughout these individuals’ lives, as it will affect their final pension?
Kevan Jones: The Government are nothing if not consistent, as Conservative Governments have been throughout history, in that in opposition they call for more expenditure on the armed forces and argue that they are proud supporters of the armed forces, but when they get into power the first thing they do is cut the defence budget and show no respect for the men and women of the armed forces in terms of...
Kevan Jones: I find that remarkable. The hon. Gentleman is letting down his constituents by not supporting what we are arguing for, which is a fair deal on pay for the members of our armed forces. If I were in his shoes, I would be making sure that I did. The last Labour Government, during which I served in the Ministry of Defence, had a proud record of accepting the recommendations of the pay review body...
Kevan Jones: I thought the Cameron Kool-Aid had been dispensed with. That figure was plucked out of thin air. I recommend that the hon. Gentleman look at the 2010 National Audit Office report that says that there would be a £6 billion so-called black hole over the next 10 years. The Conservatives dishonestly tried to give the impression that there was a £38 billion black hole to be met in 2010....