Popular opinion would lead you to believe David Cameron’s legacy was wealth, unity, prosperity for all, and Theresa May. As Theresa is untested as the Prime Minister, I do not think she can form part of his legacy. The richest few have seen an annual increase in their wealth. However, the middle class are squeezed, and the least well off abused. His glorification is greatly exaggerated.
David Cameron (Dave) believed he was born to rule so he was arrogant. He was the best of the Tory candidates to lead the Party. Attractive with a statesmanlike image, Dave thinks quickly. He is charming and has finesse. These qualities helped him to unify and modify the party.
Dave became Prime Minister of a coalition government with the LibDems in 2010. That was not an achievement! He said then ‘The national interest is more important than the Party interest.’ During his last Prime Minister’s Question’s he said, ‘The public service, the national interest is what [politics] is all about.’ His legacy sadly does not reflect his words.
Dave has introduced 30 hours of free childcare for toddlers starting in 2017. The well-intended policy, however, is underfunded. That is the policy being implemented across public services.
The NHS in 2009/10 received the highest levels of patient satisfaction. That was before Dave took office. Today, the NHS is in crisis. For the first time in its history, the Junior Doctors went on strike. Simultaneously, Education is in crisis. Both services are under-funded. The employees are overworked and underpaid. They received 1% pay rises.
A majority of women work in both sectors. I wonder if this has a bearing on the low pay and unrealistic performance targets? It would tarnish Dave’s ‘feminist’ image, but many of his actions are not suited to his words.
Taxpayers’ money bailed out the banks. To balance the books, the Tories chose Austerity Policies.
The poorest and the most vulnerable have borne the brunt of the cuts. For example, since 2009, there has been a 33% increase in the numbers of the elderly dying from the cold weather.
Social housing residents who under-occupy bedrooms have their housing benefit reduced. They must make up the shortfall in their rent. On the face of it, it seems a splendid idea. However, the Right To Buy and the lack of investment in housing means that there is a lack of property for downsizing. Young people are not eligible for housing benefit.
The policy penalises weekend fathers and the disabled who need carers. Additionally, the disabled undergo non-medical work capability assessments. These are part of a package to cut disability benefits.
Student university fees and the rate of interest for repaying student loans has increased.
Dave presided over some important and welcome reforms to adoption. However, the numbers of children taken into care have increased. There is also a growth in child poverty.
Dave did not introduce same-sex marriage. Dave supported the bill proposed by LibDem MP Lynne Featherstone. Tory members like Sir Gerald Howarth aggressively opposed to it. The bill passed because Labour MPs backed it.
However, the Act is evidence that Dave modernised the Tory Party. When Andrea Leadsom recently made a bid for the leadership, her anti-gay marriage comments had no visible support.
Peter Lily MP, says Dave is leaving a more tolerant society. Perhaps Peter has been hiding under a stone, hate crime has increased significantly. Dave has referred to migrants as ‘swarms’, and accused Muslim women of encouraging radicalisation. During the Mayoral elections, he falsely accused an Iman of supporting ISIS.
Well, Dave has indeed left disaster in his wake! His insistence that Gaddafi must go and the invasion of Libya in 2011 has left a lawless state. The power vacuum has attracted ISIS and migrants looking for a way to Europe.
Then, of course, there is Brexit. Dave gambled the status quo of the country so he could be Prime Minister again. His reign was short. He invited a referendum without a mandate or stipulations: such as a qualified majority. When the country voted to leave the EU on 23 June, Dave resigned on 24 June. We now have a more right-wing government, a rise in racism and economic uncertainty.
David Cameron’s Legacy
Dave said ‘Politicians are a mixture of egoism and ultraism. And you just hope the right one wins out so people do the right thing rather than the politically convenient thing’. The EU Referendum was the politically convenient thing. Dave’s ego wanted to be Prime Minister. The Prime Minister’s job is to serve all the people. Dave made groups of people his scapegoat; the Muslims, the migrants and the less privileged. I am sure Dave is a nice guy, but he was not a good PM. David Cameron’s legacy was not wealth, unity, prosperity for all. He has left the country a socially and economically poorer place for most us.
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