George Osborne and David Cameron would have you believe the economy was fixed but they have failed every test and broken every promise they’ve made on the economy. That’s why it’s left to the next Labour government to build the strong economic foundation we need by getting the deficit down and balancing the books in a fairer way.
Labour will take a tough but balanced approach to getting the deficit down. Our economic plan will deliver the rising living standards, more good jobs and stronger and more balanced growth which are a vital part of any fair and balanced plan to get the deficit down.
We will make different and fairer choices from the Tories, including reversing this government’s £3 billion a year tax cut for people earning over £150,000 and taking action to close tax loopholes and introducing a mansion tax on properties worth over £2 million in order to help save and transform our National Health Service.
The Tories have failed on fairness. George Osborne said: “We are all in this together. I am not going to balance the budget on the backs of the poor.”
He cut the 50p rate to 45p, handing a £3 billion tax cut to the richest one percent in the country, which means someone earning £1 million received a tax cut of over £42,000 a year
The Tories oppose a Mansion Tax to improve the NHS, but they want to hit the poorest and most vulnerable in our society with the cruel Bedroom Tax
Since 2010, there have been 24 Tory tax rises, with ordinary families paying £450 a year more in VAT
Labour analysis of figures from the IFS has found that households on average will be £1,127 a year worse off by the time of the next General Election because of tax and benefit changes under the Tory-led government
The next Labour Government will balance the books, but we will make different, and fairer, choices. We won't go down the Tory road of taking Britain back to 1930s public spending levels which existed before the NHS.
We will balance the books: getting the current budget into surplus and national debt falling as soon as possible within the next Parliament.
We will fund our promises: every spending and tax commitment in our manifesto will be fully funded.
We will change our economy: tackling the cost-of-living crisis with stronger and more balanced growth, including with an £8 minimum wage.
We will share the burden fairly: protecting everyday working people by ensuring those with the broadest shoulders bear the greatest burden, by clamping down on tax avoidance, reversing the Tories' tax cut for millionaires, and introducing a Mansion Tax on houses worth over £2 million to help save and transform our NHS.
We will cap social security: addressing the root causes of welfare spending by getting 200,000 homes built a year and making tough decisions like scrapping Winter Fuel Allowance for the richest 5% of pensioners and capping Child Benefit rises at 1% for two years.
Labour’s spending plans for the next Parliament are fully funded
As the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies has said, Labour has been the most cautious of the three main parties and has not made unfunded commitments.
“Of the main parties, Labour has perhaps been the most cautious of the three in that, at least on the basis of its own costings, it appears to have managed not to announce an overall net giveaway. Just looking at tax and social security spending policies, Labour has announced a small net takeaway of 0.1% of national income.”
Institute for Fiscal Studies, ‘Fiscal Aims and Austerity: The Parties’ Plans Compared’,
December 2014, p.21
Ed Miliband has stated clearly that Labour will only make commitments in our manifesto that are fully funded.
"We will only make commitments in our manifesto that are properly funded.
"Not commitments that depend on extra borrowing.
"That’s why we’ve explained how we will pay for every policy that we’ve put forward: costed, credible and funded."
Ed Miliband speech, 11 December 2014
Labour has called for the Office for Budget Responsibility to be allowed to independently audit every spending and tax commitment in the manifestos of the main political parties.
“The British people rightly want to know that the sums add up.
“So we will go one step further and ask the independent Office for Budget Responsibility – the watchdog set up by this government – to independently audit the costings of every individual spending and tax measure in Labour's manifesto at the next election.”
Ed Balls, speech to Labour Party Conference, 23 September 2013
The Tories have refused to agree to independent audits by the OBR despite past support from the Tory Chair of the Treasury Select Committee, who said it could “enhance the quality of public debate”.
"OBR involvement has merit if it can enhance the quality of public debate on tax and spend.”
Andrew Tyrie MP, Daily Mail, 14 October 2013
"Sources close to George Osborne said he will oppose a draft amendment to the law to allow the Office for Budget Responsibility to audit commitments in the manifestos of the main political parties."
Daily Mail, 14 October 2013
Despite refusing to let the OBR assess Labour’s plans, the Tories have been happy to ask Treasury officials to do this – based on Tory assumptions about what our plans are. Ed Balls has written to Sir Nicholas Macpherson, Permanent Secretary at HM Treasury, suggesting that – in the absence of the OBR being allowed to audit manifesto spending and tax commitments – Treasury officials should cost every spending and tax manifesto proposal of the main parties and that this process should involve the parties themselves clarifying their policies so that Treasury officials are not put in an impossible position of having to use blatantly false assumptions provided by Conservative advisers.