THE Government’s announcement of the plan to cut the 45p tax rate for top earners brought audible gasps of horror from half the nation as some came to realise what many of us have known for some time – that the Tories care not one iota for those less fortunate than themselves.
However, just ten days later, the plan, which caused the market to crash and the pound to drop to its lowest ever level against the US dollar, has been dropped. Yesterday the government announced the U-turn with Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng having to deliver a hastily revised speech to conference. And now the government is desperately searching for a scapegoat to blame the embarrassing change on, with the Chancellor claiming the tax rate had become a ‘distraction’ from the overall Growth Plan, and suggesting it was a sign of “humility and contrition” that the government was willing to change its mind over this.
Meanwhile, our hapless PM is blaming the chancellor. When she was asked on Sunday if the whole cabinet had been consulted before the decision to cut the tax was taken, Truss said: “No, no we didn’t. It was a decision that the Chancellor made.” Nadine Dorries was, unsurprisingly, critical of Truss, saying she has “thrown her own Chancellor under the bus”. According to Paddy Power, it is now 7/1 that Mr Kwarteng will no longer be chancellor by the end of the year.
Labour’s Rachel Reeves accused the Tories of being “completely out of touch”. We don’t disagree with her overall assessment . “This is an economic crisis made in Downing Street, paid for by working people.” Despite Labour’s current healthy lead in the polls, currently around 45-50% it is not clear that those same working people are overly inspired by Labour. Whilst polls give Labour up to 50% of the vote and on course for a 56-seat majority, this is mainly a feature of Tory voters remaining undecided as we pointed out in our recent analysis. Enough to win, definitely, but not if undecided Tories suddenly decide to return to the fold.
Tory Party chairman, Jake Berry, made clear his party’s disdain for ordinary people when he stated on Sky News that those unhappy about fuel bills can either cut consumption or go out and get a higher paid job. It’s worth noting that Mr Berry earns £3,500 per month on top of his MPs salary. It really is time these second jobs for MPs were stopped.
While the U-turn is a welcome sign it is one tax reversal, the rest of the mini-budget remains intact. The planned benefit cuts have not been taken off the agenda. We mustn’t be fooled into thinking the Tories are done with harming us. History has taught us this is not the case.
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