When George Osborne unveiled the Tories’ budget in Parliament, he referred to the Conservatives as the “party of the working people.” This could not be more untrue. The few good points in the budget come directly from Liberal Democrat proposals rejected by the Tories during the coalition government, and the many cuts that will hurt working people and families show just how out-of-touch Cameron and the Tories really are.
The Tories want to prop up the wealthy while hurting social mobility. The new inheritance tax threshold allows wealthy people to pass on a million pounds’ worth of property to their relatives, tax-free. Meanwhile, maintenance grants for low income university students have been slashed. Benefits for under-21s have been cut, even though many people under 21 are living on their own and struggling to make ends meet.
The few positive changes in the budget - more funding for the NHS, an increase in the single person’s income tax-free allowance, and a levy to pay for post-16 apprenticeships in large businesses - are taken from Liberal Democrat proposals from the coalition government.
Despite what Osborne said, the Tories have proved once again that they do not understand working people. The Lib Dems understand the importance of balancing the budget, but not on the backs of society’s most vulnerable. Without the Lib Dems to keep the Tories in check, the government has revealed a budget that will increase inequality and make sure the rich stay rich. This wasn't a 'we're all in it together' budget it was a 'you're on your own' budget.
- Tom Brake, MP for Carshalton and Wallington