11 January 2010

What Nick Clegg Actually Said About Tuition Fees

Lots of spinning going on over the Lib Dems commitment to phase out tuition fees. Labourite tweets from the likes of @2pallas tried to suggest that the Lib Dems had scrapped the tuition fees pledge. Conservative blogger Declan Lyons suggested that the policy was all over the place:
the policy was dropped as they couldn't afford it. Then they picked it up again. Now, it has just been extended to be done over more time.
All not true.

The policy was never dropped at Conference. What Clegg said was
Ending tuition fees would cost billions of pounds every year - we need to be certain we can afford it before we make any promises.
So he said that given the state of the country's finances, the policy's affordability needed to be checked.

Then, the new policy of phasing out tuition fees over 6 years was announced last month. This made the long standing commitment affordable.

Today, Clegg has simply restated this pledge as part of a wider message about only promising what could be afforded. On the Today programme, he said:
We will not be able to deliver our pledge on scrapping tuition fees - something we are determined to do - on the timetable we have once envisaged.
So the same policy as announced earlier this month.

Nick Clegg has been totally consistent over tuition fees. Any suggestion otherwise is desperate spin from the opposition.


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Duncan Stott said...

You flatter me, Spambot