Ed Balls on the budget from hell

For millions of families, this is the budget from hell. The combination of a sharp and unfair rise in VAT, the callous freezing of child benefit and the deepest cuts our public services have ever seen will be a hammer-blow to lower and middle income families.

Not only is this an unemployment budget which will see the jobless total rise by 100,000 a year, but George Osborne has also raised the only tax – VAT – that all the unemployed pay – and pensioners too.

Nick Clegg said vote Liberal Democrat to stop a Tory VAT bombshell. But the Liberal Democrats have now delivered the unfair VAT bombshell they campaigned against.

And this budget is not only unfair, it is also totally unnecessary. Because it is simply not true that George Osborne had no choice. By cutting the deficit further and faster, this budget flies in the face of all economic logic and will lead to slower growth and higher unemployment.

Despite all the warnings from leading economists and President Obama, George Osborne is repeating the catastrophic mistakes of the 1980s – when Margaret Thatcher also delivered frozen child benefit, rises in VAT, slashed support for manufacturing and deep cuts to public services.

The fact is that we’ve been here before – and George Osborne is talking us back to the 1980s all over again.

The battle against this budget starts here. The fight for fairness starts now. Our campaign to stop the VAT bombshell goes on.

This article also appears on Ed Balls Labour leadership website

Tags: , , , ,

One Response to “Ed Balls on the budget from hell”

  1. Richard Nabavi says:

    One things puzzles me.

    Why is a 2.5% increase in VAT in January 2011 a ‘bombshell’ which is ‘sharp and unfair’ – and which, you say is the only tax which all the unemployed and pensioners pay – a bad thing which you have to battle against, when Labour increased VAT by exactly the same 2.5% in January 2010?

    The government you were part of, Mr Balls, chose to increase VAT at the start of this year. If it such an awful thing to raise VAT by 2.5%, why did you do it? I don’t remember you attacking Darling for his VAT increase.

    Your article sounds awfully like hypocritical grand-standing.

    Good luck with your leadership campaign, by the way.

Leave a Reply