Andrew Marr: 'Tories looking to scrap housing targets are in a war of the old and the wealthy against the rest'

1 December 2022, 18:14

Andrew Marr on Thursday
Andrew Marr on Thursday. Picture: LBC

By Kit Heren

The Conservative party will lose the next election if they do not take steps to build more homes and fix the housing crisis, Andrew Marr has warned.

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Opening LBC's Tonight With Andrew Marr on Thursday, the presenter said "a whole generation of younger people", as well as poorer people, are being shut out of the property market.

He said: "There's a giant fight going on between the government and scores of its own MPs over an issue which should matter to everyone of us; and which If the Tories don't get this right, will certainly lose them the next election. I'm talking about the shortage of housing in this country.

"Like much else, this is about political power," Andrew went on.

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"Richer people, who own houses in nice parts of the country and want to stop the oiks and unwashed living anywhere nearby, are a more concentrated, organised and powerful lobby - let’s call them the haves - than poorer people scattered all over the shop, desperate for a decent roof over their heads and dreaming of owning a place of their own - the have-nots.

Andrew Marr takes aim at Tory MPs as younger people are being 'shut out of the housing market'

"Now, you’ve heard of NIMBYs. That’s an acronym for not in my backyard. But in Britain, it's not yards we're talking about… its millions of green acres and even whole counties. The government’s election promise was to build 300,000 new homes a year.

"We desperately need them because a whole generation of younger people are being shut out of the housing market, which means being shut out of owning anything bigger than a second hand car - economically shut out of their own country."

A lack of housing will lose the Tories the next election, Andrew has warned
A lack of housing will lose the Tories the next election, Andrew has warned. Picture: Getty

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Andrew continued: "But ministers haven’t worked out a way to get those houses built without dictating targets from the centre. Tory MPs are fighting back in the name of local democracy."

"They've put down amendments to the new levelling up and Regeneration bill to stop the government telling councils to build houses or making sure they do, so making a bad situation much worse."

He went on: "Tory MPs from the right of the party, like John Redwood and the left of the party like Damian Green have banded together for this high purpose. It is a war against growth and a war against people who don't own their own homes yet. It is a war on behalf of older, wealthier people against the rest.

Conservatives from the right of the party, like John Redwood, and the left, like Damian Green are against housing targets
Conservatives from the right of the party, like John Redwood, and the left, like Damian Green are against housing targets. Picture: Getty

"It is a war, in short. of the haves, and their political power against the have-nots… And it's been going on in government offices and the House of Commons behind the scenes all week.

"If you think I sound worked up, here are the words of a Tory supporting think tank boss, Robert Colville of the centre for policy studies, who told Conservative MP's "if you back these wicked proposals you are spitting in the face of a generation – not to mention removing any prospect of its members ever becoming home owners and voting Tory.”