To quote Justin Webb from Radio Four’s Today Programme this morning: “Elections have consequences and today, in the Queen’s Speech, we find out what those consequences will be for the UK.”
Unless you have been asleep or marooned on a desert island for the last few months, you cannot have failed to hear about some of the Conservative’s primary pledges for the new Parliament. Many, although not all, of the high profile manifesto promises made it into the Speech today (the most obvious change being the proposal to repeal the Human Rights Act which is now watered down to an intention to consult on the subject). The renegotiation of the UK’s relationship with the European Union and the referendum on our continued involvement in the EU is likely to be the focal point of both the commentary on this Speech and this Parliament as a whole. Nevertheless, the relatively short Speech managed to cram in a huge number of policy objectives which will stoke the political debates for some time and may have some serious ramifications for the rest of the country.
David Cameron’s intentions were loud and clear in today’s Queen’s Speech – he stated in his introduction that Britain is on the brink of something special with a golden opportunity to renew the idea that working people are backed in this country. So what do the Conservatives actually intend to do for employers and business?