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Labour aims to change political dynamic around benefits uprating

6 December 2012

It now looks almost certain that Labour will vote against the 1 per cent uprating for most working age benefits. Labour is pointing out that because this also includes tax credits, most of the people hit by this will actually be in work. The party hopes that this changes the political dynamic around this subject.

But, as a Liberal Democrat minister pointed out to me last night, the coalition can portray any attempt to uprate by more than 1 per cent as special treatment for those on benefits. The minister stressed that public sector pay was only going up by 1 per cent and the threshold for the 40p rate was, again, only being increased by 1 per cent.

The other thing the coalition will hit Labour with is how they would pay for uprating by more than 1 per cent. They’ll constantly demand to know what tax Labour would raise to fund it or whether they would simply borrow more. It’ll be another example of how Osborne intends to use his baseline advantage in the run-up to the next election.

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  • Sarge

    The dynamic I would like to see is the two Eds receiving a reality check,preferably via their rear ends before promising to spend other people’s money buying votes.

  • anyfool

    It does not matter what Labour do on this matter, they vote against every cut, this loses its effect so it just goes over peoples head and confirms that they are playing at politics and not serious about the countries problems.

  • HooksLaw

    Plus Balls was also demanding no petrol tax, so that is one area of where people with money could not pay for their spending.
    But lets face it labour do not believe in actually paying for what they spend. The magic money tree will provide. Balls probably thinks ‘Harry Potter’ is an auto biography

    • dalai guevara

      You go on as if Balls was your only hope (alternative). Let it go.

      • HooksLaw

        The article is about Balls. The first words are ‘Ed Balls and … ‘

        • dalai guevara

          Listen, Hook – with all this economic truth hitting you, you wanted me to be funny (at least). I have got something really funny for you: it’s a Bank of England training video explaining how QE works. It’s hilarious, especially the ‘inflation control’ bit. The video is only as long as an Elvis song, so you will hardly fall asleep…

  • toco10

    Of course Labour will vote against any welfare capping because it pays Labour to keep people on benefits and out of work as they invariably vote for Red Ed and the brothers.Any increase in living standards works against Labour and the BBC which uses its 24 hour news broadcasts and its tax avoiding news presenters(many have private companies to avoid National Insurance,claim expenses and pay members of their family) to bombard us with leftist policies by constantly highlighting bad news and covering good news only with suspiscion and cynicism.

    • dalai guevara

      Logical error, if that was the case then surely Osborne could grap a few voters by not knocking them.

      His outlook is simply different: he believes in a top down revitalisation of the economy, whereas others can see that in fact the inversion is a valid alternative.

      • HooksLaw

        He knows the nation cannot afford the money.

    • kevinlaw1222

      This argument that gets trotted out by some on the unthinking right – that people on benefits always vote Labour out of self interest always rather amuses me.

      The suggesting being that those on benefits are so selfish that they would put the good of their pocket ahead of the good of the country.

      So are we to take it then that all those people who vote Tory only ever do so for the good of Queen and Country? That there is not a scinitlla of self interest in voting for Tory. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!

      And you are saying that with a straight face are you?

      Well from the over taxed middle class to the big boys making mega money – just as many people vote Tory out of self interest as do those on benefit vote Labour.

      The idea that those voting Tory are doing so only for altruistic means is beyond risible.

      Plus, if you bothered to look at the reality of the situation, you will find very few on benefits – especially long term benefits – actually bother to vote at all. Usually, they feel so disenfranchised from society that they couldnt give a fig.

      You have a walk round some of the sink estates in Glasgow and Liverpool and ask people if they vote at elections. you will be laughed at. The idea that those on benefits sit, scheming away to vote Labour to keep them in a life of luxury without work is the kind of knuckle headed right wing fantasy that I expect out of a Daily Mail reader, not the more intelligent types who take the Spectator.

      I would wager that proportionately more people vote Tory out of self interest than ever those on benefits vote Labour.

      • toco10

        You miss my point entirely which is the middle income earners pay the taxes which support many of the welfare slackers and scroungers.Red Ed and Labour prefer not to recognise that those who work hard and create wealth pay for the total cost of welfare.Grow up!

  • dalai guevara

    We have been ‘borrowing’ £2,800 per head this year by means of QE (publicly backed funds to bail out private equity). If the projections are correct, there will be a further shortfall of £108bn this year, so another £1,700 per head will need to be borrowed. Every new tranche of QE does admittedly not reach the ‘real’ economy, so what does it do? And more importantly, why does the bottom end have to suffer most by implementing real term cuts?

    It is hard to see how this is a ‘ baseline advantage’ for anyone right now.

    • HooksLaw

      If only you knew what you were talking about you could at least make it amusing.

      • dalai guevara

        Wot? QE not secured by gilts? Gilts don’t mature? No way!

        • HooksLaw

          Stop pretending to be an economist. If you and labour are so worried about borrowing then why did it increase from 312 billion to 525 billion between 2002 and 2008?

          Brown should have been paying off debt in that time so in fact debt is about 320 billion higher than it should have been. Your concerns about debt are laughable

          • dalai guevara

            I don’t NEED to pretend to be an economist, everyone is their own economist. I am no Labour supporter and I certainly do not support Ball’s grandstanding.

            There is another way, you know – when will you see it?

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