Tory unpopularity soars after fifth U-turn
The Tories have been forced into another U-turn after the government’s “bewildering” budget hit another snag over capping charity tax for the rich.
Plans to remove tax breaks for the wealthy when they give money to charities were scrapped this week, in just one of five embarrassing U-turns for George Osborne which has seen ratings slide dramatically across the country.
Unpopularity for the party was already in a downward spiral earlier in the week as the government indecision over the pasty tax was finally brought to an end after its cancellation on Monday. This was followed by a scaling down of plans for secret courts over cases of national security as well as a premature end to increased VAT on static caravans. A decision to capture and remove buzzards so that pheasant shoots for the rich were not affected has also been reversed.
Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls said: “Another day, another budget tax U-turn – three successive U-turns in four days – all when parliament is not sitting and just a few weeks after ministers were defending these measures, show just what an embarrassing shambles George Osborne’s budget has become.”
Ministers said the tax relief cap would still be set at £50,000 or 25% of income, depending on which was greater. However, it would no longer apply to charities after they reacted in anger against the blow the move would have to their finances.
Tax lawyer Heather Self, said: “This was a poorly thought-through proposal which would have harmed charities without being well targeted on abuse. We are glad that today’s developments mean that those individuals who legitimately want to support charities will not be penalised for doing so.”
Critics have suggested the government’s meanderings are an attempt to distract the public over the Leveson Inquiry’s strong criticism of ministers in their co-operation with press tycoons like the shamed Rupert Murdoch.
The editorial unit