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SNP criticises Starmer's ‘crippling’ caution

SCOTTISH nationalists accused Labour of “suffocating optimism” in the election campaign today with fiscal caution leading to £18 billion of spending cuts.

Writing in the Daily Record, SNP Westminster leader Stephen Flynn said: “The other strange thing about this election is that the crippling caution of Sir Keir Starmer is suffocating any sense of enthusiasm.

“Starmer’s status quo, his choice to change the guard but not to change course, won’t deliver real change.”

During the election campaign, the Labour leader has faced criticism for failing to offer a radical change from the Conservatives, including by not scrapping the two-child limit on benefits and sticking with Tory fiscal rules.

The SNP has repeatedly pointed to claims by the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) that a future Labour government will have to make spending cuts.

But Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar has said there would be no austerity under Sir Keir’s leadership.

The SNP says £18bn of cuts will be required in the future, with the party suggesting budgets in Scotland would be hit by cuts of £1.45bn because of its population share.

The SNP, as well as the Scottish Lib Dems, Scottish Labour and the Scottish Greens, will publish their manifestos this week.

Scottish First Minister John Swinney and Mr Flynn claim it will be the only “left of centre” set of pledges published by a major party in this campaign.

“The closer we get to polling day, the greater the desire for an alternative to the Westminster status quo,” Mr Flynn said.

“Now that the Tories are finally done, it’s not a time for the caution Starmer is clinging to. It has to be a moment to deliver real change.”

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