Why Life Won't Be Much Easier under Tories, by Cameron; David Cameron: Warning

Daily Mail (London), March 17, 2008 | Go to article overview

Why Life Won't Be Much Easier under Tories, by Cameron; David Cameron: Warning


Byline: BENEDICT BROGAN

FAMILIES may not find life any easier under the Conservatives, DavidCameron admitted yesterday.

The Tory leader dampened expectations of tax cuts if he comes to power, warningthat more than a decade of Labour had left 'the cupboard bare'.

'I cannot sit here and promise we're going to cut the cost of living and makeeverything easier for families,' he said. 'But what we can do is say we willstop making it worse'.

His bleak language set the tone for what some MPs fear is an attempt by theleadership to head off growing calls for a more robust line on tax.

It came as a YouGov poll for the Sunday Times found that 67per cent of peoplethink the level of tax is too high, while 86 per cent believe their bills arerising faster than the government says.

Tory Right-wingers have been urging Mr Cameron to promise that he will cut theburden of the state. But there was confusion last night over what voters canactually expect after a senior frontbencher was rebuked for making 'pie in thesky' predictions about tax cuts.

Philip Hammond, Tory treasury spokesman, was slapped down for telling a Sundaynewspaper that cuts would have to wait several years, until the Parliamentafter next.

His remarks appeared to rule out the prospect of Mr Cameron handing back cashto households in his first term.

Mr Hammond set out what looked like a two-term strategy that would see theTories devote the next parliament to putting public finances in order.

Shadow Chancellor George Osborne has been at pains to hold out the prospect oftax cuts as part of his policy of 'sharing the proceeds of growth'. But he hasrefused to say when they might happen. …

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