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Responding to Ed Miliband’s speech on the deficit today, Jonathan Edwards MP said:

“The Labour party leader today attacked the Tories for their plans to reduce spending on public services to levels not seen since the 1930s, at 35% as a share of GDP. What was revealed in questioning after his speech, is that Labour’s plans would see it at roughly the same, 37% of GDP – again a level not seen since the 1930s, before the creation of the NHS and when people left school at the age of 14.

“This yet again shows that there is little or no difference between the Westminster parties, with Labour lumped to the Tories’ ideological plan to shrink the size of the state. Prior to the Aututmn Statement, I warned that the Government’s spending plans for the next parliament would return us to the 1930s if pushed through. What is even scarier is the fact that the Labour parties’ plans are essentially the same.

“Meanwhile, Plaid Cymru set out its plans to increase investment infrastructure by 1% of UK GDP annually. Institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the Confederation of British Industry have noted that for every £1 invested it produces £2.50 - £3.00 in the real economy. This would be an investment of around £16bn at a UK level, bringing £800m to Wales to invest in schools, hospitals, and other works to improve the economy.

“This would help tackle the deficit over a longer period and is the perfect antidote to the Westminster Parties’ consensus which will inflict ever greater austerity and ensure places like Wales suffer as they seek to balance the books on the backs of the poor.

“At the upcoming election, the real choice being offered the people of Wales is between the Westminster parties who all offer more austerity and more hardship, or Plaid Cymru - who, in the forthcoming hung parliament where every vote counts, will demand an end to austerity and fight for the need to invest.”