Jim Murphy: Queen's speech a damp squib
THE Queen's Speech was a mix of tidy-up ideas which had been kicking around departments for years.
"Is that it?" was the reaction across the country.
I know that flexible parental leave will be welcome to all, but there was no plan for growth, no plan for jobs and no plan to raise living standards - and that is what people tell me they need when I am out knocking on doors each week in Glasgow.
This doesn't feel like a Conservative Government who had been out of power for 13 years. No big idea, no real vision - a missed opportunity.
Generally it would appear that the legislative programme is aimed at reuniting the Tories rather than the country.
It has been a terrible month or so for the Government.
We all remember Pastygate, the fuel panic, granny tax and taxing charities - but it is the made-in-Downing Street double-dip recession which really matters.
Few will have missed the similarities between Nicolas Sarkozy refusing to shift from his dogmatic pro-austerity stance before being kicked out of office and our very own Government digging in their heels.
Now David Cameron's personal ratings are in freefall.
Increasingly you get the sense that his political project achieved 80 per cent of its target when he entered Downing Street.
Just as political commentators asked what Gordon Brown would be about were it not for the credit crunch, people today ask what Cameron is for if not for George Osborne's deficit reduction.
Electorates across Europe are delivering judgments based on results. Relying solely on cuts looks increasingly flawed, as Labour have long argued.
This is a political risk shared across the Coalition - but more importantly an economic risk shared across the country. And the Queen's Speech did little to address people's growing fears.
For the first time in too long, people are willing to listen to Labour. So what should we do?
First we must focus on the things that matter which the Government are ignoring, like the rising cost of living or improving standards in schools.
Second, we must remember that we are incumbents too, as many see both main parties as part of the Establishment.
The prize in post-crash politics will go to the party who can best balance deficit reduction and economic growth.
The Queen's Speech doesn't mean Labour will win the General Election - but that we CAN win it.
As Ed Miliband says, the economy is not working for working people, and we need to be the real alternative who can deliver that change.
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