Ken Clarke: US and European political leadership on crisis is poor

Ken Clarke: US and European political leadership on crisis is poor
Ken Clarke: US and European political leadership on crisis is poor

Ken Clarke, former chancellor and current justice secretary, criticises political leadership in the USA and Europe over debt crisis on Newsnight:

"The main thing I take from this crisis is unfortunately the political leadership in the USA and large parts of western Europe have been totally overwhelmed by the dimensions of the crisis, not able to cope.

"You have paralysis in Washington, and paralysis in large parts of Europe because they are incapable of agreeing and everybody is fighting short-term politics.

"I do not think the British government comes out of it too badly when you make the comparison, but our fate partly depends on how these people sort it out.


"It doesn't need the same level of tax, it doesn't need the same level of spending. Governments can decide that for themselves whether they are high tax, high spend, or low tax, low spend.

"But discipline, fiscal discipline, controlling of deficits … we agreed it when I was chancellor and the Germans led the way in breaking it."

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