16 September 2014

Hostage to fortune

The FT reports:
Mr Cameron, Labour leader Ed Miliband and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg signed a joint pledge in the Daily Record saying that the Scottish parliament was “permanent” and that the so-called Barnett formula – which gives Scotland higher per capita funding for public services than England – would continue.
I would be extremely surprised if the continuation of the Barnett formula (whereby percentage increases in English public spending automatically result in increases in Scottish comparable spending) is met with approval by the little Englanders.  It has long been a bone of contention that Scotland does excessively well out of the current public spending arrangements (whether justified or not).

There will be a backlash.  Then we will find out if Cameron has a spine.


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