The cut in the top rate of income tax from 50p in the pound to 45p, announced in 2012 and taking effect last year, was one of the big mistakes David Cameron and George Osborne made.
Ed Balls, the Shadow Chancellor, has been on BBC Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine Show defending the 50p tax rate. I support it, but have to say that the way Balls makes the argument is almost enough to put me off. As I eainxpled (such a good typo I’m leaving it) yesterday, the £10bn extra raised [...]
Ed Balls was on the Andrew Marr show this morning, doing a reasonable job of defending what has long been his policy, of returning the top rate of income tax to 50p in the pound as long as there is an abnormal deficit.
Balls said he did not want a permanent 50p rate, gently re-opening the [...]
I was on Iain Dale’s LBC radio programme on Sunday, talking about Labour’s tax policy. I said I was in favour of a mansion tax in principle. Jonathan Portes, of the National Institute for Economic and Social Research, was also on and explained why a land tax (of which a mansion tax would be a progressive form) was economically efficient, so I agreed with him.
I read Ed Miliband’s speech this morning before I realised that there was a fuss over his plan to reintroduce a 10p income tax band, paid for by a mansion tax on homes worth more than £2m.
The Treasury has finally supplied an answer to my question about the basis on which the Prime Minister and the Chancellor claimed in their party conference speeches that the rich are paying a greater share of tax than under the previous government. I have written about it in The Independent on Sunday today.
George Osborne, in [...]
Perhaps it is just because I am a grumpy curmudgeon, but I didn’t like George Osborne’s speech either.
A lot of second-rate sloganising, a couple of feeble jokes, no attempt whatever to engage with the difficult macro-economic debates about policy, and mindless partisanship, such as that Blair “didn’t achieve anything” in his 10 years.
The only bit [...]
David Cameron is an instinctive politician. He didn’t mean to call Ed Balls a “muttering idiot” at Prime Minister’s Questions – David Wooding reports that he said to George Osborne immediately, “I can’t help it”, and Norman Lamont, his former boss, told BBC Radio 4 World At One: “He can be quite volatile. It makes him [...]
In my column for The Independent on Sunday today I wonder at the genius of David Cameron in allowing the Blairites to rally behind Ed Miliband. There is a chunk of voters that is crucial to the Conservatives’ chances at the next election that I call the AB liberals. They identified with New Labour but [...]
A bit of clever politics from Ed Miliband in his interview with The Guardian today. On the cut in the 50p tax rate, he says:
I think Cameron now knows it was a mistake. As I was giving my Budget reply I could almost see Cameron thinking to himself, “This is not what I claimed the [...]
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