In his own series of media appearances, Labor leader Keir Starmer said it was “astounding” that the government was waiting until the fall to prepare a budget, and accused the ministers of ” a lack of planning for the reopening of schools.
Johnson, speaking to Times Radio on the first day of its broadcast, also rejected the idea of an imminent investigation into the extent of the deaths of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom, saying that it was too early.
“It turns out that I think now is not the time, really making a difference, coping with the pandemic, when everyone is flat,” he said. .
“I don’t think it is time to spend a lot of official time on this, but we are learning lessons all the time and we will obviously draw the right conclusions for the future. ”
Johnson said it was time for a “Rooseveltian approach to the UK,” referring to the former US president’s public works program to revive the economy in the 1930s as part of his New Deal policy. , including new spending for schools.
“It was a disaster, let’s not mince words, it was a real nightmare for the country,” he said of the coronavirus. “The country has gone through a deep shock. But in these moments, you have the opportunity to change and do better. We really want to rebuild better, do it differently, invest in infrastructure, transportation, broadband – you name it. ”
While refusing to specifically rule out spending cuts, Johnson said his goal would be to invest to help the economy recover. “You have to be careful and the chancellor will present our plans during the spending review in the fall.
“But in the end, what you can’t do right now is to go back to what people called austerity, it wasn’t really austerity but people called it austerity, and I think it would be a mistake. “