Tag Archives: Centre for Policy Studies

A brief (recent) history of the Lib Dems’ flagship tax-cut for the low-paid

Tax Threshold infographicGeorge Osborne’s fourth budget saw him finalise the commitment to implement in full the Lib Dems’ number one manifesto commitment: taking out of income tax all those who earn less than £10k a year.

It prompted this post by my Co-Editor Caron Lindsay yesterday – Why it’s worth being a member of the Liberal Democrats – recalling the recent history of this focus on raising the tax-free allowance. Which in turn triggered this comment by Alex Wilcock, recalling the slightly less recent history:

The fact is, raising thresholds was party policy in the 1990s, then put back on the agenda when Chris Huhne made it the central plank of his Leadership campaign in February 2006.

Curious, I thought I’d do a quick fact-check. Here’s what I found:

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , , and | 6 Comments

Rejoice! Labour has a policy. Even better it’s a Lib Dem policy.

Yesterday at PMQs Ed Miliband channelled Ronald Reagan. Today he’s channelling Vince Cable:

Here’s what Ed has just announced:

Let me tell you about one crucial choice we would make, which is different from this government. We would tax houses worth over £2 million. And we would use the money to cut taxes for working people. We would put right a mistake made by

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , , and | 31 Comments

The Independent View: National security is paramount but ‘secret courts’ are an illiberal attack on British justice

Supreme Court - Some rights reserved by cphoffman42In September 2012, the Liberal Democrat Conference voted overwhelmingly against the most contentious aspect of the government’s Justice and Security Bill – the extension of ‘secret courts’, otherwise known as Closed Material Procedures (CMPs), into civil courts.

This would allow ministers to submit a CMP application to a judge that material relating to national security be withheld from the defendant/claimant and their legal team despite being used as evidence. As Andrew Tyrie MP and Anthony Peto QC explain in “Neither Just nor Secure”, published today by the Centre for Policy Studies, this is worrying because “in an adversarial system such as the English one, the right to know and challenge the opposing case is not merely a feature of the system, it is the system”.

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

Stephen Williams MP writes: Backbench committees and the louder Lib Dem voice

There has been much talk in recent weeks about how Liberal Democrats show our distinctiveness and make the party’s voice heard more loudly in government.

A key part of this is the role of the Lib Dem parliamentary committees, one of which I co-chair.

These committees are not simply talking shops. They perform two important functions: making our influence felt within government and preparing the ground for party policy in the future.

Increasingly, the fruits of these committees are being seen.

The Coalition Agreement is the contract that underwrites this government. It sets out the policy agenda agreed between ourselves and our Coalition …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , and | 5 Comments

What the think tanks are saying: Is this the end of National Insurance?

The Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) is a Conservative think tank, founded by Margaret Thatcher and Keith Joseph in 1974. In November last year, it published an article by David Martin entitled Abolish NICs – towards a more honest, fairer and simpler system .

In the forward, Jill Kirby (at the time Director of the CPS), said: “National Insurance (NI) has become income tax by another name. Yet… it is riddled with inconsistencies”

Do the arguments presented in David Martin’s paper indicate the beginning of the end for National Insurance Contributions? Certainly, the arguments are pretty compelling.

The paper summarises …

Posted in What do the academics say? | Also tagged and | 13 Comments



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  • User AvatarMartin Pierce 21st Aug - 10:57am
    I haven't got a strong view about Scottish independence, other than that as a liberal I believe in self-determination and so if the will of...
  • User AvatarStephen Campbell 21st Aug - 10:25am
    Wow. That last paragraph truly is nothing more than an effort to bully/intimidate people into silence. Truly, in so many ways, the people at the...
  • User AvatarJo Shaw 21st Aug - 10:20am
    Of course the defence to an action for libel is that the statements are true. I look forward to any libel action therefore as the...
  • User AvatarSeth 21st Aug - 10:17am
    Bullying and intimidation of the very worst kind. So much for the part of the party constitution's preamble which pledges "We will at all times...
  • User AvatarEduardo Reyes 21st Aug - 10:12am
    The puzzling thing for me in all this is that the party's leadership, and people advising Lord Rennard, think that elaborate legal process is the...
  • User AvatarDenis 21st Aug - 10:09am
    Having spent a large chunk of my life helping to address the appalling situation created by the battling nationalisms within Ireland (now hopefully at last...