Honeyball’s Weekly Round-Up

Labour Party

David Cameron’s trip to India was overshadowed by his refusal to apologise for the Amritsar massacre last week.

The massacre related to 1919 when 379 Indians were killed by troops under British command. Instead he used the term “deeply shameful”.

He defended his decision not to issue a full apology by saying: “In my view, we are dealing with something here that happened a good 40 years before I was even born, and which Winston Churchill described as ‘monstrous’ at the time and the British government rightly condemned at the time. So I don’t think the right thing is to reach back into history and to seek out things you can apologise for.”

Relatives of the victims said they were disappointed that the Prime Minister had not apologised. He was badly advised about this-he should have offered and apology because otherwise it’s neither one thing nor another. Rawnsley wrote a fine piece in this week’s Observer in which he warned that the Chancellor can’t afford to make any more mistakes in next month’s budget. His mistake last year was the “conglomeration of so many misjudgements,” he said.

He reminds us of one such mistake where Osborne ‘took his eye off the ball’ and was lured to Washington for dinner with the President the week before Osborne was due to deliver the Budget. “David Cameron flew off to Washington, accompanied by a large number of his staff, for a fancy dinner with the president. Mr Osborne, a great fan of many things American, did not want to be left at home staring at a Treasury spread sheet while his friend Dave was partying with the Obamas. So he crossed the Atlantic to join the jamboree,” wrote Rawnsley.

What a foolish thing to do. This illustrates one reason why he was forced into so many embarrassing U-turns after many ill-conceived plans were found to be totally unworkable.

This is what happens when you are distracted. One hopes he has learnt his lesson this year. Osborne is certainly under greater pressure to solve Britain’s economic problems after Moody’s downgraded the UK’s AAA rating. You can read Ramsey’s article in full here.

It was hardly surprising that UKIP’s sole female MEP was going to defect to the Tories, after she accused the UKIP leader of bullying and being “anti-women” and “a Stalinist”.

Nigel Farage’s response to this was typically offensive and dismissive of her accusations. He simply said: “the Tories deserve what is coming to them” and added: “The woman is impossible.” You can read more here.