Targeting tax increases at high earners only is an ineffective way of raising revenue
The idea behind this statement is that high earners have resources allowing them to respond to changes in the tax regime to limit their liability - but there is no conclusive evidence of whether this statement is true or false.
"Paying your fair share of tax is the price of living in a civilised democracy but politicians should never forget that taxes are levied on businesses that employ people, and individuals who work hard and face tough decisions about how they spend their money. "
"Corporation Tax is due to fall to seventeen per cent by 2020 – the lowest rate of any developed economy – and we will stick to that plan, because it will help to bring huge investment and many thousands of jobs to the UK."
To fund public services, a financial transactions tax should be levied
The term 'financial transactions tax' covers a wide array of taxes levied on financial transactions. At the moment, in the UK, there is a 0.5% tax or duty on purchasing shares. Most proposals for a financial transactions tax involve expanding this tax or duty to transactions on other asset classes.
"A good tax system is not just about the headline rates of tax, however, but about its simplicity. Our system remains too complicated, making it hard for people – especially self-employed people and small businesses – to assess their taxes. We will therefore simplify the tax system."
To fund public services, there should be a small increase in income tax for all earners
Currently, UK income tax outside of Scotland is levied at 0% up to £11,500 (the 'Personal Allowance'), at 20% from £11,501 to £45,00 (Basic Rate), at 40% from £45,001 to £150,000 (Higher Rate) and at 45% over £150,000 (Additional Rate).
"The Conservatives will always be the party that keeps tax as low as possible and spends the proceeds responsibly. It is our firm intention to reduce taxes on Britain’s businesses and working families. "
Leaving the EU's Single Market is a worthwhile price to pay to gain control over immigration to the UK
Access to the EU's Single Market tends to be associated with the free movement of people (one of the Single Market's 'Four Freedoms'), making it difficult to envision a scenario whereby full Single Market access can co-exist with full control of immigration.
Once talks with the EU are complete, there should be a second referendum on whether to accept the Brexit deal or remain a member of the EU
In the UK, the principle of parliamentary sovereignty means that referendums have a 'non binding' quality. The absence of a formal constitution in the UK means that deciding to have a second or subsequent referendum is a political decision for parliament to make.
Even if there is no transitional UK-EU trade deal in place, the UK should leave the EU in 2019
Having notified the EU of its intention to withdraw under Article 50 of the Treaty on the European Union (TEU) in March 2017, UK withdrawal will take place either when there is an agreement in place or after two years - unless there is unanimous agreement in the EU to extent the negotiating period.
"The Guardian: 'Department of Health (DH) figures show that the amount of (NHS) funding that has gone to “independent sector providers” more than doubled from £4.1bn in 2009-10, Labour’s last year in power, to £8.7bn in 2015-16.'"
New taxes raised to support the NHS should be earmarked solely for NHS spending
This would be an example of what is known as 'hypothecated tax' which the Financial Times defines as: 'A tax where the money obtained, or part of the money obtained, is used for a particular purpose, rather than spent on a number of things.'
"The Conservatives will always be the party that keeps tax as low as possible and spends the proceeds responsibly. It is our firm intention to reduce taxes on Britain’s businesses and working families."
"The value of the family home will be taken into account along with other assets and income, whether care is provided at home, or in a residential or nursing care home (…) we will introduce a single capital floor, set at £100,000, more than four times the current means test threshold"
"A new Conservative government will continue to increase the National Living Wage to 60 per cent of median earnings by 2020 and then by the rate of median earnings, so that people who are on the lowest pay benefit from the same improvements in earnings as higher paid workers."
Zero hours contracts facilitate flexible working and should not be banned
Zero hours contracts mean that employers are not obliged to provide any minimum working hours to a worker , who is not obliged to do the work when asked. Such contracts legally cannot prevent a worker for looking for or accepting other work.
"We will keep our promise to maintain the Triple Lock until 2020, and when it expires we will introduce a new Double Lock, meaning that pensions will rise in line with the earnings that pay for them, or in line with inflation – whichever is highest."
The 'bedroom tax' (also known as the 'under-occupancy penalty' or 'spare room subsidy') is a cut in housing benefit if you live in a council or housing association home and are classed as having a spare bedroom.
A system of proportional representation should be adopted for UK general elections
Proportional representation' refers to methods of casting and counting votes that are designed to facilitate a closer correspondence between the proportion of votes and seats won by parties than the current 'first past the post' system.
"We are a United Kingdom, one nation made of four – the most successful political union in modern history. Its very existence recognises the value of unity – England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales achieve less as two, three, or four, than as the United Kingdom together. This unity between our nations and peoples gives us the strength to change things for the better, for everyone, with a scale of ambition we simply could not possess alone. "
"The United Kingdom Government has in the past tended to ‘devolve and forget’. This Conservative government will put that right. We want the UK Government to be a force for good across the whole country. "
"Although comprehensive reform is not a priority we will ensure that the House of Lords continues to fulfil its constitutional role as a revising and scrutinising chamber which respects the primacy of the House of Commons. We have already undertaken reform to allow the retirement of peers and the expulsion of members for poor conduct and will continue to ensure the work of the House of Lords remains relevant and effective by addressing issues such as its size."
"We will therefore develop the shale industry in Britain. We will only be able to do so if we maintain public confidence in the process, if we uphold our rigorous environmental protections, and if we ensure the proceeds of the wealth generated by shale energy are shared with the communities affected."
The UK should maintain the 'special relationship' with the USA in international affairs
The Special Relationship is the unofficial term for the exceptionally close political, diplomatic, cultural, economic, military and historical relations between the United Kingdom and the United States.
"It is our objective to reduce immigration to sustainable levels, by which we mean annual net migration in the tens of thousands, rather than the hundreds of thousands we have seen over the last two decades. "
We’re committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. We fully respect an individual’s right to privacy and actively seek to preserve the privacy rights of those who share information with us. Any personal information which is volunteered to us will be treated with the highest standards of security and confidentiality.
This policy explains what information we collect about candidates who use our website and how we use it. Any questions should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
WhichCandidate is an independent website that aims to provide information to voters on the policy views of election candidates and political parties in Ireland during specific election campaigns. The policy positions of candidates are provided by the candidates themselves or by their political party.
WhichCandidate is run by academics at the Department of Politics and Public Administration at the University of Limerick as an educational tool, provided free of charge to voters.
Legal Basis for Processing
WhichCandidate relies on the following legal bases for the processing of personal data:
Consent of candidates through their voluntary submission of their personal data so that we may fulfil our purpose outlined above.
The performance of a task carried out in the public interest.
What types of information do we collect on candidates?
WhichCandidate aims to provide a profile page for all officially registered candidates in a given election. The default information provided on these profile pages are
A photograph of the candidate (from the candidate’s official twitter account or campaign website, both of which are publicly available)
Links to candidate’s official and publicly available social media or web sites
For party-affiliated candidates, the positions of the candidate’s party on a range of policy issues. These positions are supplied to us by the parties who respond to our policy survey.
All officially registered candidates can voluntarily register on our site using their personal email account and edit their profile page. Candidates are responsible for keeping their user passwords confidential. By registering on the site, candidates can provide voters with information about their campaign. Candidates can also complete the policy questions, or they can alternatively continue to have their party policy positions displayed on their profile page. Candidates can also choose to provide their contact information on their profile page, such as email address.
If you have a profile page on the site, you can edit your information at any time by logging in, or you can withdraw your consent to processing and request to have your profile removed by contacting Rory Costello at email@example.com.
How is information on candidates used?
This information will be publicly available on the website for the purposes of informing the general public. An anonymised version of the completed questionnaire will be stored in a secure location by the University of Limerick and may be used for research purposes, for example research on political representation.
Candidates’ email addresses, used to log-in to the site, will be stored in a secure location at the University of Limerick and will not be shared with third parties. Candidates’ email addresses will only be used for the purpose described above and will stored only as long as the candidate has a profile page on the website.
Candidates are responsible for keeping their user passwords confidential. The operator reserves the right to delete a candidate’s account or to block content in the event of incorrect information or misuse of any kind. The operate assumes no liability for errors in information entered by candidates on their profile page.
What type of information is collected from visitors to the site?
WhichCandidate does not collect any identifying information about web visitors on this website. If you answer the policy survey on the website, or if you complete the optional questionnaire at the end of the survey, we will retain this information for research purposes (described below). None of these questions ask for information that could identify the user.
WhichCandidate uses New Relic to collect anonymous performance data to help us analyse technical performance and troubleshoot errors. We have configured New Relic to not collect cookies or personal data. See New Relic cookies used by Browser
How is information on website visitors used?
The anonymous information collected on web visitors is used for the following purposes:
Answers provided to the policy questions are used to provide information to users on their match with election candidates.
Answers provided to the policy questions and to the optional questionnaire are used for academic research on public opinion and political representation.
Answers provided to the policy questions and to the optional questionnaire are shared with election candidates on an non-partisan basis, at no charge, to help improve the policial system.
Information collected by New Relic is used to monitor technical performance of the website.
For technical reasons, we use session cookies on our website, which are stored on your hard disk for the duration of the link. We also use session cookies to retrace usage behaviour in anonymised form. The anonymised usage data is recorded, processed and used only in order to gear our website to users' needs. These session cookies are not used to collect any personal information about you. Session cookies are automatically deleted as soon as you leave our website or the dialog is ended. When using our website, you can decide whether you wish to accept or decline these cookies by modifying the settings in your browser. However, if session cookies are disabled on your browser, you may not be able to use certain features or sections of our website. To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, visit http://www.allaboutcookies.org/.
You have the right to withdraw your consent to processing and request to have your candidate profile erased/deleted by contacting Rory Costello at firstname.lastname@example.org
You have the right to request a rectification to your personal data or to restrict our processing of your personal data.
You have the right to object to our processing of your personal data.
You have a right of access to your personal data which we process on your behalf. You may request access by contacting Rory Costello at email@example.com
You have a right to lodge a complaint about our processing of your personal data to the Data Protection Commission by contacting them on firstname.lastname@example.org
Frequenty Asked Questions
What is WhichCandidate?
WhichCandidate is a ‘voting advice application’ that allows voters to compare their own policy views with those of the candidates standing for election.
It aims to inform voters about the policy positions of candidates and to help voters to make a more informed voting decision.
How does it work?
A set of relevant policy issues are selected by the research team in advance of the election. Election candidates are contacted to complete a questionnaire on these issues. Each participating candidate is given a public profile on the website, incorporating their answers to the questionnaire.
Voters who visit the website are asked the same set of questions, and their answers are compared with the answers of the candidates. A customised results page is then presented to each user, containing a ranking of candidates ordered by how closely their answers match.
How is the ranking calculated?
First, we calculate the proximity of a user to a candidate on each question. To give an example, a question might have three answer options: Agree, Neither agree nor disagree, Disagree. Proximity can in this case be either:
1 (if the user and candidate select the same answer)
0.5 (if one selects the middle option and the other selects Agree or Disagree)
0 (if one selects Agree and the other selects Disagree)
We then take the average proximity between the user and candidate across all the questions that the user has answered. If for example a user has a proximity score of 0.5 to a candidate across all questions, the overall match with this candidate is expressed as 50%.
Some issues are more important to me than others. Can this be taken into account?
You first select the issues that are important to you, and you are then presented with questions related to those issues. You will only be matched with candidates on those issues. In addition, if there are any specific questions that you are not interested in, you can simply select 'no opinion' and they will be excluded from calculation.
Some candidates appear to be missing
We endeavoured to contact all declared candidates. Some candidates have declined to share their policy views with us and are not featured on the website. If you would like to see more candidates from your area on the website, please urge them to contact us and complete the survey.
If you are a candidate and were not contacted by us, please let us know.
Is it independent?
WhichCandidate is not associated with any political party or election candidate. It is run by researchers at the Department of Politics and Public Administration at the University of Limerick. It is supported by funding from the Irish Research Council.
Who do I contact?
Any queries or feedback on WhichCandidate can be sent to Rory Costello at the Department of Politics and Public Administration, University of Limerick