Amanhã é mais um dia decisivo para os próximos 5 anos do Reino Unido. O povo vai às urnas votar no partido que julgam que irá melhor representá-los no parlamento.
Com a recente crise parece que a maioria tem estado em dúvida relativamente ao partido onde melhor colocar o seu voto, de tal forma que, algumas previsões indicam que estas eleições irão resultar num aumento de votos para os partidos minoritários. Mesmo que assim seja, existem 3 principais partidos que lutam pela maioria dos votos - Convervatives, Labour e Liberal Democrats (apresentados por ordem alfabética).
Tendo o Reino Unido uma história recente de uma maioria de apoiantes de Labour (centro, esquerda), e devido ao descontentamento da maioria com a corrente situação política e económica do país, as previsões indicam que muitos dos habituais votantes em Labour, assim como muitos apoiantes dos conservatives, desta vez, irão optar pela diferença e dar o seu apoio aos Liberal Democrats o que, poderá levar a um "hung parliament" o que significa que nenhum partido terá a maioria dos votos, sendo que o poder terá que ser dividido entre os vários partidos e, nenhuma lei poderá ser aplicada sem o apoio dos restantes partidos.
Desta vez, eu também vou ter o poder para votar! Pensava que tal não seria possível por não ser uma cidadã Britânica, no entanto, no ano passado foi-me enviado um formulário para casa para eu preencher de forma a que o meu cartão de eleitor fosse enviado. Aparentemente como neste caso votamos para os governos locais que, indirectamente irão decidir o número de deputados de cada partido no parlamento e, consequentemente decidir quem sera o próximo primeiro ministro, assim, já posso marcar a minha posição. Como tal claro que vou exercer o meu direito. Afinal é aqui que vivo e onde pago impostos, por isso, acho muito bem também ter o direito a ter influência sobre o partido que vai governar o país onde moro.
Ainda estava um pouco indecisa entre os partidos, mas após uma pesquisa mais profunda sobre o que cada partido pretende fazer, quais as mudanças, quais as políticas e quais os valores de cada um, já me sinto preparada para tomar uma decisão consciente do partido que eu quero que me represente nos próximos 5 anos.
Fica aqui um pequeno resumo de comparação das prioridades dos três principais partidos retirado do site da BBC:
- Aim to eliminate "the bulk" of the UK's structural deficit within five years beginning in 2010 with £6bn in cuts
- Spending cuts in all areas apart from health and foreign aid
- Allow charities, trusts, voluntary groups and co-operatives to set up new Academy schools, independent of local authority control, and to run other public services
- Scrap identity card scheme
- Recognise marriage in the tax system by allowing adults who are married or in a civil partnership to transfer up to £750 of their tax-free personal allowance to their spouse, as long as the higher-income member of the couple is a basic-rate taxpayer.
- "Targeted" increase in public spending over the next year to "sustain the recovery", before cutting the deficit by more than 50% by 2014 and reducing the structural deficit by at least two-thirds over the next parliament
- Protect "frontline investment" in childcare, schools, the NHS and policing
- Ensure all people who suspect they have cancer get test results within one week
- Restore the link between the state pension and earnings from 2012
- Guarantee a place in education or training for all 16 and 17 year olds
- Guarantee people aged 18-24 a job, work experience or training place if they are unemployed for more than six months
- Give parents of one- and two-year-olds an extra £4 a week in Child Tax Credit for each child from 2012
- Hold a referendum on adopting the Alternative Vote system for Westminster elections and making the House of Lords fully elected by October 2011.
Para além destas ideias principais entre os partidos, parece-me interessante também indicar as politicas de cada partido relativamente à imigração no Reino Unido. Esta informação retirei do site www.comparepolitics.co.uk:
Immigration can be a real benefit to the UK, but only if it is properly controlled with its impact on the economy, public services and social cohesion taken into account.
Our approach will ensure that we admit both the right people for our economy and also the right number of people. For economic migrants from outside the EU, we propose a two-stage process:
- The first stage is making eligible for admission those who will benefit the economy
- The second stage is an annual limit to control the numbers admitted with regard to the wider effects on society and the provision of public services
A Conservative Government would also apply transitional controls as a matter of course in the future for all new EU entrants.
To enforce such controls, and to prevent illegal immigration and combat criminals who compromise our security, we need a new, integrated approach to managing our borders.
So we will introduce a dedicated Border Police Force to bring together all the agencies responsible for border control.
Unlike Labour's Border Agency, which does not even include the police, our force will have the power to stop, search, detain and prosecute the terrorists, traffickers and illegal immigrants who currently slip through the net. Only then will we be able to start making Britain safer.
Labour knows that we all want strong borders and a fair deal. That is why Labour is continuing to deliver the biggest changes to our immigration, citizenship and border security system for decades. Our changes include:
- New electronic border controls will be counting people in and out of the country by 2010
- In 2008 we activated powers to automatically deport foreign national rule-breakers, and we will expand our detention estate to lift the number of people we remove from Britain.
- We will introduce legislation to reform the immigration system and set out a new agenda of earned citizenship where the rights and responsibilities of becoming a British citizen have to be earned. This will ensure that only those who share our values can earn the right to stay by clearly spelling out the rights and obligations of legal immigrants to Britain, as well as the requirements for earning British citizenship - including learning English, paying tax and obeying the law.
- The new Migration Impacts Fund, that comes from an extra levy on new migrants as they enter the country, will support local services like health, police, and schools manage short-term pressures of migration.
- Enforcing strict penalties against immigrants or their employers if they break the rules, including the establishment of new partnerships between local authorities and enforcement agencies to gather intelligence, disrupt illegal activity and track down illegal immigrants and failed asylum seekers.
Liberal Democrats Party
Years of incompetence, and failure to plan for the effects of unprecedented immigration, has led to a crisis of public confidence that threatens Britain's historically liberal approach to immigration. We must recognise that we can only secure the substantial economic and cultural benefits of a liberal immigration policy if we make the effort to plan for the impact and consequences of that policy. But since the Tories and Labour abolished exit checks in the 1990s, we have no way of knowing how many illegal immigrants live here.
Liberal Democrats want an immigration system that works. A system that is firm but fair, which plans for the effects of managed legal migration and promotes integration. We believe in the benefits that immigration has brought this country but we do not believe our borders should be a soft touch.
Liberal Democrats would take control of our borders and immediately reintroduce entry and exit checks. Our National Border Force would have the power of arrest. We will bring unscrupulous employers and people traffickers to justice. We will offer families who have been here for years and want to pay taxes a route to citizenship, provided they want to work, speak English and want to commit to the UK in the long term. We would also introduce a Regional Points-Based Immigration System to ensure that immigration is targeted on areas that are under-populated and want more immigration, like Scotland.
We will make the asylum system, for those fleeing real persecution, fairer by taking responsibility away from the Home Office and giving it to a Canadian-style independent agency, which will substantially reduce the number of decisions overturned on appeal. We will end asylum-seekers' dependence on benefits by allowing them to work to support themselves and their families.