HC Deb 08 February 1983 vol 36 c868
9. Mr. James Lamond

asked the Secretary of State for Employment how many men were registered as unemployed in the Oldham travel-to-work area (a) in May 1979 and (b) at the latest available date.

Mr. Alison

At May 1979 the number of males registered as unemployed—the old basis of the unemployment count—in the Oldham travel-to-work area was 2,638. At Janaury 1983 the number of unemployed male claimants—the new basis of the count—in the area was, 9,736.

Mr. Lamond

Has the Minister noticed that the number of unemployed people in Oldham now exceeds the number of those whom the Tory candidate managed to scrape together to vote for him in Oldham, East at the last election? Is he aware that the people who voted for him did so on the fraudulent claim by the Tory party that, by reducing tax and putting more money into people's pockets, busines would expand and unemployment would fall?

Is he further aware that the Tory party has failed on both those promises?

Mr. Alison

The hon. Gentleman seems to be trying to draw a correlation between the level of unemployment and voting intentions. It is clear that, despite the present level of unemployment, more people propose to vote Tory this time than at the last election.