Lib Dem fiscal policy in a nutshell

Ahead of this evening’s debate between Alistair Darling, George Osborne and Vince Cable, you might find this little summary of the party’s fiscal policies helpful:

  • The party’s proposed tax cuts (such as raising the basic rate income tax threshold to £10,000) will be paid for by tax rises elsewhere in the system (such as ending the higher rate tax relief on pension contributions)
  • The party’s spending savings (such as scrapping ID cards) will be spent two-thirds on cutting the deficit and one-third on other policies (such as the pupil premium)

As to exactly how much savings will be identified, that in part awaits the manifesto. But the party has also made clear that the search for savings would continue beyond that – not unreasonable given that until you’re in charge and see the full details of the books, there is only so far you can go in identifying savings.

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9 Comments

  • I wonder whether the Tories in their quest for change will indicate that they’d change the rules so that the books were open for all parties to see?

  • I seem to recall that cutting the £97 Billion Trident project is also one of the savings identified

  • Malcolm Todd 29th Mar '10 - 10:00pm

    Don’t get too excited about that £97 billion – it’s over something like 30 years, so won’t make a huge difference to the deficit. (It won’t be nothing, mind – so long as the MoD doesn’t demand that the difference is all spend on ‘conventional’ defence; but it’s important to keep reminding ourselves of the difference between debt and deficit, and the corresponding difference between one-off and annual savings.)

  • Stephen Dedalus 29th Mar '10 - 10:45pm

    True, it is over 30 years but the cost of running and maintaing the system alone will be about £2.3 Billion a year which seems a huge waste. Then there’s the upfront payments such as £14bn on new Subs and £3bn on warheads. It all adds up and could be spent on something more useful.

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