How would you use an extra £600? Preview tonight’s Lib Dem Party Political Broadcast

The latest Lib Dem Party Political Broadcast is airing tonight, with a variety of people telling how they’d use an extra £600 per year, thanks to Liberal Democrats cutting income tax:


Video also available on YouTube.

Catch the broadcast tonight at 17:55 on BBC2, 18:25 on ITV1 or 18:55 on BBC1.

For Wales, there’s a different version with added Kirsty.

Support the Liberal Democrats Fairer Tax campaign here.

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30 Comments

  • Alex Harvey 6th Feb '13 - 5:59pm

    To plug the gap in my finances caused by reductions in state support and suddenly having to pay council tax?

  • I want to pay more tax so I can have better council services, more investment in big infrastructure projects and better pay for under paid civil servants.

    Who do I vote for?

    Under the Coalition my tax burden has gone down, despite being an above average earner and the money I make from renting out my property has gone up, thanks to housing pressure.

    I really don’t like this. Goes against my beliefs.

  • Cynthia Martin 6th Feb '13 - 7:04pm

    Nick Clegg asks what I would do with £600. Answer – a temporary fix for winter gas, electricity and fuel billls, after which I will struggle like everyone else. I think about the lowest paid who Nick says will be out of the tax band, but they still have to pay ever higher bills, and they will also have to pay some Council Tax. So, the gesture is appreciated, but is like putting plaster on a wound.

  • Stuart Mitchell 6th Feb '13 - 7:46pm

    It just about covers the child tax credit I lost, plus I can use the change to make a tiny contribution to the extra VAT I pay each year. So, er, thanks.

    But it’s sad to see the Lib Dems reduced to the basest of political messages: “Vote for us, we give you money.” The fact that the message isn’t even true just makes it all the worse.

  • Lots of comments on Twitter saying just that!!

  • Could we have the millionaire’s version? “What could you do with an extra 40,000 pounds a year?

  • Richard Dean 6th Feb '13 - 8:12pm

    Fill up a tank of petrol?

  • Was this made by the same agency who produced the shout at your MP ad for the AV campaign?…. faced wih the announcement of well over inflation rises in the Thames Water area announced today I woud suggest the party needs to be more subtle in its messages than this.

  • David Thompson 6th Feb '13 - 8:44pm

    What to do with an ‘extra’ 600 quid a year? So many choices!

    Possibly pay for the extra transport or utilities costs being loaded on to us poor folks?

    Possibly to pay for the bedroom tax?

    Possibly to pay for the council tax bill that has been gifted to hundreds of thousands (millions? Don’t have figures) thanks to cuts in council tax relief for the poorest?

    Childcare now that many council services have either been cut or now charged for?

    The disabled or ill might use that 600 quid to help bridge the gap following their re-classification of their illness or disability under ATOS and accompanying reduction in income, maybe to pay for their (withdrawn) mobility scooter?

    Choices, choices….so many to choose from.

  • Bedroom tax equals £15 x52 weeks,£780.00p.Less the £600 you got me.I am still £180.00p a year worse of,thanks a bunch.
    Plus my utilities and everything else has gone up.Wow you are doing a great job,not.

  • You only get an ‘extra ‘ 600 pounds if you’re in work. Those not in work through illness, disability or recession get nothing but cuts.

  • Eddie Sammon 6th Feb '13 - 9:33pm

    This advertisement is disgusting. It is miss selling our policies to make it sound like if you vote for Liberal Democrats we will be giving you a further £600 in income tax relief, not £600 since Labour (which it happens to mention just once). This is the sort of activity that is rampant in the private sector and if we continue to lack the courage to be completely honest then I am afraid we belong in the same bracket as the bankers and the GPs who refuse treatment. I might try to take this further.

  • Matthew Huntbach 6th Feb '13 - 10:04pm

    We are constantly being lectured about what an appalling economic situation we are in, how huge cuts in public spending are necessary to cut the deficit, and so on. If that’s the situation we’re in, I don’t think tax cuts should be a priority. I’d rather not have the tax cut and not have such nasty expenditure cuts – the two go together as tax has to be on an “I’ll do it if you do it” basis, should any “libertarians” be suggesting I’m at liberty to write the government a cheque for £600 if I like, no point in me doing it if no-one else does.

    This does seem to be appealing to a sort of Tory “I’m all right Jack mentality”, I think there will be a lot of former Liberal Democrat voters who see it the way I do.I wonder how people who aren’t paying income tax in the first place will see it? Tax cuts for those still on a comfortable income at the cost of benefit cuts for the poor? Not nice.

  • Eddie Sammon 6th Feb '13 - 10:48pm

    One of my friends who would benefit and doesn’t follow politics closely asked me, with bemusement, “why are you cutting taxes?”, so this one policy might not be as popular as people think. I understand it is easy to carp from the sidelines but I believe a principled based approach to marketing is better than a detailed one.

  • Richard Harris 6th Feb '13 - 11:05pm

    I will save it up and put it towards my eldest child’s University fees.

    Oh, wait, I’ve lost more than that from my Working Family Tax Credit reduction.

    Lib Dem political broadcasts used to be quite intelligent. Now they are just insulting the populations’ intelligence.

  • I’d like to know exactly how this £600 is calculated. So far as I can tell there will be an extra £1300 non-taxable income at 20%. Taking into account other taxes on your wage, I can only get to about £400 of savings for those earning under £32k. The next band decreased from £34k so those between £32&34k stand to lose approx £800. My maths doesn’t equate to anyone getting an extra £600 based on this anyway (and I’m a maths grad!) Someone please correct me if I’ve missed something

  • Eddie Sammon 6th Feb '13 - 11:45pm

    I am a financial adviser – the figure is actually £593 because from next April the income tax threshold is increasing to £9,440 and under Labour the highest it got was £6,475.

    £9,440 – £6,475 * .2 = £593. So they can’t even get this right. I noticed this a few months ago but let it slip as a matter of rounding.

  • Eddie Sammon 7th Feb '13 - 12:51am

    If we include employees national insurance we get the following:
    Employees NI 2010-11 = 11% over £110 per week
    Employees NI in 2013-14 = 12% over £149 per week

    If we take someone on the minimum wage and include the above changes then figure increases to £780.9 and if we include the increases in the minimum wage the figure increases to £1,101.78. However this is getting into murky territory because last year the minimum wage increased by 1.8% which is higher than earnings but lower than inflation. Curiosity dealt with :).

  • Matthew Huntbach 7th Feb '13 - 10:42am

    As others have noted, this is just the sort of glib salesman’s stuff that enrages people about politics. People don’t want to be talked down to with gimmicky presentation like this. I don’t think people will be thinking “Oh, wow, £600 extra in my pocket”, they will be thinking “How are these con-merchants trying to con me this time?”. People know from having been ripped off by the banks in particular that when some glib salesmen comes along with what looks like something too good to be true involving money, there’s a catch in it. People at the moment are not in an optimistic and trusting mood, which if this tactic is to work they need to be. The responses we have seen here, along the lines of it paying for all the other increased costs which people blame on this government, show what the more considered thought after the one I’ve given above will be. It will make the party look patronising and out of touch, as if it does not realise how much people are suffering financially right now, so that it thinks £600 will be seen as gift to spend on fripperies, and does not realise for most people it will just be absorbed.

    A more serious presentation would have acknowledged this as part of the greater thing, not a gimmicky “what would you spend £600 on?”, but a serious acceptance that it is some sort of balance for other things, the increase in VAT for example. We need a serious and non-patronising explanation of the dilemma any government would be in now, which means even the most Keynesian-minded of us if we were in government would not be entirely avoiding difficult decisions about cuts to services that people would experience as unpleasant. We don’t need this sort of ad-man’s gimmicks. I shall continue to pay just the minimum membership fee to the party, as I don’t want my money wasted on this sort of thing.

  • Eddie Sammon 7th Feb '13 - 12:34pm

    Agreed Matthew.

  • David Allen 7th Feb '13 - 12:54pm

    Absolutely right Matthew. We could have offered a viable justification for our overall tax policies, but we didn’t.

    Now if Labour had “found” a free £600 to “give away”, what would we have said? Ed Balls, irresponsible, can’t be trusted with the British economy, acts as if money grows on trees, etc etc.

    At least the Tories have the sense to stick to the “austerity” message. It’s not a good message, it’s not a sound policy, but at least the Tories understand that they would have nothing to gain by preaching it one day and then subverting it the next day. Unlike the Lib Dems, who seem to take delight in being permanently all over the place.

    Here’s a new slogan, “Liberal Democrats – Winning All Over The Place!”

  • I’ll use it to cover the incease in contributions which will see me working longer for less pension pay out.

  • Richard Shaw 7th Feb '13 - 2:13pm

    Wealth inequality is vastly more unequal in the UK than income. According to Lib Dems ALTER the top 5% by income posses 60% of the nation’s asset wealth, more than the next top 40% income earners combined. I very much think that our main tax priority at the next election should be that old Liberal ideal: Tax Wealth, Not Work.

    Raising the income tax threshold moves us closer to that ideal and though it doesn’t help those already earning below the threshold, it does mean that whenever they do earn over that amount, they get to keep more of their hard-earned cash and be better able to build up some savings and spend more money in our economy.

    Raising the threshold further to level with the minimum wage would make the minimum wage equivalent to the post-tax amount of the so-called living wage while not increasing staff overheads for employers. It is also more efficient than taxing people to give them the more or less of the same money back in the form of tax credits. Better to not tax them in the first place and still give them extra if they need it.

    I work full-time for a modest graduate-level wage and my wife works part-time. We don’t receive any benefits or tax credits and the increase tax allowance will help us save up a buffer after shelling out all our spare cash on £4k worth of immigration and citizenship fees over the last 5 years and put money towards driving lessons for us both.

    This threshold increase is very much appreciated.

  • I will loose the £600 per year getting to work as my employers are moving my place of work and it will cost me more in fuel to get to the new place.

  • Matthew Huntbach 9th Feb '13 - 1:49am

    Richard Shaw

    Wealth inequality is vastly more unequal in the UK than income. According to Lib Dems ALTER the top 5% by income posses 60% of the nation’s asset wealth, more than the next top 40% income earners combined. I very much think that our main tax priority at the next election should be that old Liberal ideal: Tax Wealth, Not Work.

    Raising the income tax threshold moves us closer to that idea

    Yes, I’ve no problem with THAT, in fact it’s a line I’ve used myself many times. My problem here is the way this is being portrayed, I think I have already explained why I think it will put people off rather than attract support.

    I’d be very happy to see cuts in income tax balanced by greater tax on land and wealth, which is what I said – put forward this tax cut as part of a balancing act, nit as £600 in your pocket to spend in fripperies. The case for taxes on land and wealth is difficult to put – we have already seen any suggestions on those lines being condemned by Tories as “the politics of envy”, a “tax on ambition” etc. The little old lady in the big house will be trundled out again to make us weep. The top 5% in wealth will be called “Middle England”. We shall be told (though not in so many words) we must continue to reward the initiative of King Charles’s mistresses, William of Normandy’s robber barons etc, by keeping their descendants in the luxury they deserve from having chosen such illustrious ancestors.

  • Eddie Sammon 9th Feb '13 - 10:12pm

    Good shout on bringing up the ancestors – why is income tax higher than inheritance tax? I think it is barmy to have income tax at 45% and inheritance tax at 40%. That would be a true Liberal, and dare I say popular, policy. At least then people would see what we really stand for: reward for hard work + equality of opportunity.

  • I would use £600.00 if i was entitled to it, to offset the £3,500 i am going to lose this year because of KCC cuts to Care providers budgets, so they are taking it off the carers, who care for people with a learning Disability.

  • Have just seen your PPB for the first time. I DID vote for LibDems last time but now? Never. People really think a hol;iday is a human right? Not from my money it isn’t – get a life!

  • Tax allowances for 2011-2012 was £7,475.00, 2012-2013 was £8,015.00, now £9,440.00 – 9440.00 – 8015.00 = 1425.00 extra tax free allowance this year = £285.00 better off. Tas allowances have increased year on year, what is the big dela here ? – £600.00 is written off by the 2.5% increase in VAT that I have been paying for the past 2.5 years. It won’t make a dent in the £27,000.00 punds worth of debt my daughter is about to sign up to at University. This £600.00 con does not wash with me, do you think the British people are really that stupid to be conned by this gimmick?

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