Tax Credit: The Lords Showed the Needy That Someone Cares

Christopher Lee - photo (1)

27 October 2015


The House of Lords did a splendid job last night.  The peers defeated the government on a piece of legislation that would cause financial agony and worse to the poorest and needy and in doing so demonstrated the government’s unthinking and uncaring.

That the Lords acted fairly and rightly is in no doubt.  Furthermore any one who says, as some of the Chancellor’s supporters did here at Westminster last night that George Osborne had not realised that so many would be penalised by his plan on Tax Credits is either a fool or a stooge.

The Treasury nomenclatura and Osborne’s bunny load of advisors had gone through the proposals and consequences in detail.  That is their role.

So they knew that a single mum would be desperate to pay the rent and feed three children when this new system hit.

They knew that this one act – which David Cameron promised would not happen – would and maybe will still cause such horrendous difficulties in already strapped households. For anyone in such a position the consequences would be too awful to imagine. That is a crude way of putting it. It is the reality.

Now there is speculation that Cameron will simply fill the Lords with a hundred peers and so contrive a Conservative majority.  Really? Would the Prime Minister do such a thing to push through such unfairness on the poorest?

Last night’s protest by the Lords brings to people who are not touched by the Tax Credit system an opportunity to witness the terrible imbalance of the have and have not in our society. For those caught in that frightening poverty trap where the children are the innocents there is a slightest hope that someone cares.

Chancellor Osborne so clearly remote from the dreadful plight of so many in need would do well to bin his plan.  It must not be part of the way in which people are quietly governed.

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