Keir Starmer called for a two to three-week “circuit-breaker” lockdown in England in an effort to bring coronavirus cases down but the Labour leader was immediately questioned on the cost of his plans. BBC deputy political editors Vicki Young asked: “For weeks, local leaders including lots of Labour mayors have called to be more involved in the decisions taken for their area. You’re now talking about a return to a blanket national approach. Isn’t this going to a be a huge cost to the economy and Isn’t it better to have a tailored approach?”
Speaking at the press briefing, Sir Keir replied: “I do think local authority leaders and mayors have managed to be much more involved in the process.
“We’ve been calling for track and trace to be with them for a very long time.
“But what this is about is a break to the circuit to make sure we get the R rate down so in all of those areas we can get the virus under control.
“In relation to damage to the economy, it would be caused by weeks and months of the approach the government has set out.”
He added: “This will give us the chance to get back in control of the situation.”
In a message to the Prime Minister, Sir Keir Starmer said: “You know that the science backs this approach. You know that the restrictions you’re introducing won’t be enough.
“You know that a circuit break is needed now to get this virus under control.
“You can’t keep delaying this and come back to the House of Commons every few weeks with another plan that won’t work.
More to follow…