At Prime Minister’s Questions today, David Cameron played heavily on the labour force figures released today, which showed an increase in the number of employed, and decrease in unemployment, claimants and public sector workforce. Ed Miliband countered with the rather weak response that it’s no good telling people they’re better off when living standards continue to fall.
Welfare was brought up, with Cameron setting out his policy to protect pensioners from cuts – an area Labour is currently targeting. Chris Ship, ITV news deputy political editor, thinks this will be a major dividing point at the next election, Tweeting:
PM: we are going to cap welfare but not pensioners (unlike Labour). <<Theme of next election beginning to be set #pmqs— Chris Ship (@chrisshipitv) June 12, 2013
The question of arming Syrian rebels was also, with Miliband asking whether or not the arms embargo should be lifted, with a request to consult with MPs before making such a decision. Cameron will be meeting with Vladimir Putin in advance of the G8 summit to discuss the Russian president’s support for the regime.
Also on the G8 agenda will be tax avoidance, a subject that the prime minister delightedly used to bring up the story of Labour helping its donor John Mills to avoid a tax of up to £1.5m by donating £1.65m in shares rather than cash.
Other topics discussed include: British exports, intellectual property in the music industry, HS2, and whether solar panels should they be subject to the same controls as wind turbines.