Today (8th July 2015) George Osborne delivered the first Conservative-only Budget since 1996.
Reacting to the Summer Budget, local Labour MP Tom Blenkinsop said:
“Today we finally saw the Tories unleashed. In the run-up to the announcements it had been billed as a ‘radical budget’, but that was merely code for attacks on the purse strings of thousands of families across the UK.
“Before the election David Cameron and the Tories refused to come clean on their plans of tax credits and now we know why. Cuts to tax credits mean wages need to increase, so with this announcement alongside the falsely named ‘National Living Wage’ research already shows that actual living wage should be well over £12 if tax credits cut. So a family with one earner on average earnings will lose over £2,000 in tax credits from the changes announced today
“Tax credits, introduced by Labour, help tackle poverty and get people back to work – particularly single parents. Undercutting tax credits without real action to tackle low pay and to ensure full employment risks punishing low earners.
“Of course we want to see the welfare bill falling and action to help people get back to work – it is a basic requirement cut the deficit in a sustainable way. But welfare spending is already £28 billion higher than the Chancellor expected because he has failed to tackle the real causes of high welfare costs: low pay, high housing benefit costs and insecure working conditions.
“This Budget needed to ensure working people are given support and incentives to find a job, whilst providing security for the nation’s finances. The reality for George Osborne is that the Tory Government is going to borrow £83bn more since his March budget. This is highly dangerous with the ongoing Greece situation and the Chinese stock market in free fall.
“My job now, as it always has been, is to give a voice to those who will be hurt by these cuts; hold the Chancellor and his decisions to account, and to set out a way to cut the deficit that is fair for my constituents in Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland.”