Labour twice as likely to cut taxes as Conservatives, say voters

  • In Business
  • 2023-01-21 20:00:00Z
  • By The Telegraph
Rishi Sunak - Jessica Taylor/UK Parliament
Rishi Sunak - Jessica Taylor/UK Parliament  

Voters believe Labour is twice as likely to cut taxes as the Conservatives, polling for The Telegraph reveals.

The survey found that half trust Sir Keir Starmer to put money back in their pockets, with fewer than a quarter saying the same of Rishi Sunak.

Asked what they thought of the current tax burden, 49 per cent said it was too high and only 13 per cent believed it should be raised further.

The findings will add to growing clamour among Tory MPs for the Prime Minister to change course and bring forward plans to slash taxes.

Treasury insiders have warned that Jeremy Hunt, the Chancellor, will resist those calls and will not be unveiling any new tax cuts in his spring Budget.

They insist he wants to reduce the burden as soon as possible but that the "priority is to drive down inflation first - the most insidious of taxes".

Asked which of the political parties they trust more to cut taxes, 49 per cent of people said Labour, while 23 per cent  who opted for the Conservatives.

The poll, carried out by Savanta, also found that only 28 per cent believe the "general level of taxation in the UK is about right" at the moment.

Forty-one per cent wanted to see income tax cut most, followed by 31 per cent for VAT, 13 per cent for National Insurance and five per cent for corporation tax.

But reducing the tax burden ranked as a lower priority for the public than fixing public services and cracking down on illegal immigration.

Four in 10 said clearing the NHS backlog should be Mr Sunak's number one focus, whilst 29 per cent said it should be halving inflation. Stopping small boat Channel crossings was the top issue for 11 per cent of voters, whilst cutting taxes was the main priority for 10 per cent.

It comes as The Telegraph reveals that the Government has predicted 1.5 million people will be dragged into higher tax bands in the next five years.

HMRC projections show an extra 1,130,000 workers will be hit with the 40p rate, which kicks in at £50,271, because income tax thresholds have been frozen. Meanwhile 301,000 top earners face being bumped up to the 45p bracket as pay rises will see their salaries rise above £125,000 a year.

Rachael Griffin, a tax expert at Quilter, said: "Many of those may not feel wealthier as their salaries have simply kept up with inflation. This means that in real terms their buying power remains much the same, yet their salaries are taxed much more."


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