Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Tories 'best' to tackle poverty

from the BBC

The debate on how to solve child poverty in the UK seems to be a highly charged debate. Here is the latest salvo. - Kale

George Osborne is set to claim that the Tories are best placed to tackle poverty and create a fair society.

The shadow chancellor is also expected to say Gordon Brown has burdened future generations by reckless borrowing.

Ahead of his speech he said "simply chucking money at people" was not enough without tackling worklessness and improving educational chances.

Treasury minister Angela Eagle said the Tories were trying to avoid scrutiny about "unfunded and unfair policies".

There are 900,000 more people in severe poverty than in 1997, the shadow chancellor will say in a speech to think tank Demos.

Autumn relaunch

He is also expected to accuse the prime minister of treating future generations unfairly by leaving them with large debts to pay off.

In an article in the Guardian, he said he thought that issue would become "the new battle in British politics as the government mortgages our long-term future for the sake of its short-term survival".

He also wrote that the modern Conservative Party was "now winning the argument that the best way to achieve progressive goals is through Conservative means".

His speech later comes ahead of the prime minister's expected autumn relaunch, which is likely to stress Labour's commitment to "fairness".

Earlier Mr Osborne told the BBC: "Simply redistributing money, simply chucking money at people, simply relying on tax credits has failed.

"Child poverty is rising in this country, despite the amount of money that is being spent on the tax credit system. "

He said the party would strengthen tax credits by tackling the "couples penalty" which he says disadvantages couples who live together - and improving administration of the system.

"There is absolutely no Conservative plan to in any way get rid of tax credits, indeed if anything we want to strengthen tax credits."

Link to full article. May expire in future.

No comments: