THE general election will be the “social justice election”, former prime minister Gordon Brown said as he announced Labour would boost NHS spending in Scotland.
Mr Brown said the party would outspend the SNP on the health service by spending £250 million extra.
His comments come ahead of the launch of the election campaign for MP Ian Murray at an event held at an Edinburgh school today where he will tell party activists that each political party should be judged on whether they will offer real change on issues such as health, poverty, housing and jobs.
The departing MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath will say: “The Scottish Government has chosen to protect the NHS in Scotland even less than the shoddy protection the Tories have given it in England.
“Instead, the SNP have diverted money allocated by the Barnett formula that could have been spent on the NHS in pursuit of their constitutional and other goals.
“When people want to know how we can tackle poverty, injustice, low pay and the neglect of the NHS, the SNP talk incessantly about deals, coalitions and hung parliaments.
“Labour believes in a different approach which focuses on the social and economic change we can deliver.”
SNP MSP Bob Doris said: “This is an incredible statement by Gordon Brown - who isn’t even a Westminster candidate, and seems to have forgotten that health is decided at Holyrood anyway.
“Scotland needs a strong team of SNP MPs to protect our health budget from Westminster privatisation.
“Labour refused to commit to real terms health spending increases in Holyrood elections, and in the one part of the UK where they are in power, Wales, Labour have actually cut health spending in real terms.
“Polling shows that the SNP is the most trusted party in Scotland when it comes to the health service. We have pledged to keep increasing health spending in real terms in the next parliament if we are re-elected next year, having already taken NHS spending to an all-time high in Scotland.”
Mr Brown will also say that the leader of Scottish Labour, Jim Murphy, will talk about “only the critical issues”.
He said: “This should be and will be the social justice election.
“I argued during the referendum that it was not a Scotland v Britain battle but about two visions of Scotland’s future.
“Now I argue that this election should not just be about deals between the parties. It is about meeting people’s demands for change and who is best at achieving fairness.”
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