Gummer digs hole over legal aid cuts

Ipswich Spy was surprised at the article printed in The Times last week by Ben Gummer MP because it made so many cheap points and appeared to be a lazy response to some careful thoughtful consultation, and it didn’t sound like Mr Gummer. The cheap political point scoring continued with this from The Guardian website. Now we at Ipswich Spy will admit that the Guardian isn’t attuned to liking Tory MPs, any more than the Daily Mail does, but the points they are making are not party political in their thrust. The cuts to the legal aid budget will harm those who cannot afford to pay for representation. These will include the most vulnerable, those who most need the legal profession to stand up for their rights.

Mr Gummer you should go and sit in the County Court, go and talk to the judiciary and the lawyers and the clients and the vulnerable people whose rights you are about to put at risk before you make such cheap and petty points. You are making yourself look ignorant of the plight of fathers denied access to their children, just one example that was brought up in comments to our original article here.

Fair access to justice is not something that can be compared with health and education and come out on the losing side. It is something that a decent and civilised society can attest to. Oh and before the usual suspects troll through the comments that these cuts pay for “soldiers and teachers and nurses” the average legal aid lawyer earns less than the average nurse…

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6 Responses

  1. [...] Spy has had not just one, but two, attacks on Ben Gummer for his article on legal aid [...]

  2. [...] that were there in the morning from this humble blog questioning their motivation for their repeated attacks on Ben Gummer for him wondering why we need to spend more than any other country on legal [...]

  3. This is part of a comment from one of the linked articles, that unwittingly hits the nail firmly on the head :

    “These legal aid cuts are simply an attack on the poor. If they go through, just remember not to be ill, or old, or disabled. Also avoid having a low paid job, or an unreasonable boss. And above all, never be unemployed, because the benefit system is as complex as tax law, and there won’t be any lawyers to guide you through the maze”

    Simplify the systems. Many of the problems and most of the costs will go away.

  4. The benifits stystem and the tax system were made complicated by the last Labour government. Now when anyone tries to do anything they claim it’s affecting the most vulnerable when it was them that made them vulnerabve

    • Labour certainly made the benefits and tax systems more complex, but they were complex before (I worked in tax before Labour came in, so I know).

      However there was always a drive to simplify the tax system until 1997 when the tax manuals stopped growing and started exploding.

  5. [...] site has made no secret that we disagree with the actions the Government is taking over fair access to justice. Mr Gummer has been kind enough to grant us his response to the [...]

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