Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 34%, LAB 42%, LDEM 9%. This is the first voting intention poll conducted wholly after the budget, though much of it was before this morning’s newspapers and the continuing media coverage we’ve had today (for the record, YouGov’s actual fieldwork times are from around about 5.30pm yesterday until around about 4pm this afternoon)

The eight point Labour lead equals the largest this year. It could be a budget knock for the Conservatives, though it is worth remembering that we also had another eight point lead earlier this week before the budget (in so much as it can be “before” a budget that had been so widely leaked), so it could be normal margin of error.

The YouGov poll has various other questions on the budget. The increase in the personal tax allowance is predictably popular, with 90% of people supporting the change. There are also solid majorities in favour of the cut in corporation tax, allowing shops to open on Sundays during the Olympics and the increaase in stamp duty on homes worth more than £2million.

Turning to the more controversial measures, 55% of people opposed the decision to cut the 50p tax rate to 45p, with 32% in support. The opposition to this measure is less strong than most of the pre-budget polling on the question – the difference is largely because polls before the budget tended to show Conservative voters opposed to the abolition of the 50p tax rate. The post-budget poll shows 60% of Tory voters in favour. Part of this might be because people are happier with a 45p compromise than abolishing the band completely, but a lot is probably Conservative supporters being more supportive of a policy when the Conservatives actually do it.

Where they haven’t done that is the least popular part of the budget, which predictably is the “granny tax”. Only 18% of people support increasing taxes paid by pensioners by phasing out the age-related tax allowance, with 64% opposed. This includes 57% of the Conservative party’s own voters and, as one might expect, 79% of people over the age of 60.

Overall just under a third of people (32%) think the budget is fair, compared to 48% who think it is unfair. To put this in context, YouGov asked the same question after last year’s budget and found 44% thought that budget was fair.

The survey also asked people whether they thought different income groups would end up paying more or less in tax as a result of the budget. 46% thought poorer people would pay less in tax, and 56% thought that the richest people in Britain will end up paying less tax. In contrast, 40% think people on average incomes will end up paying more, compared to just 23% who think they will gain and asked about “people like themselves” 21% of people think’ll end up paying less tax, 37% think they’ll end up paying more.

All this suggests the budget has not gone down well. What remains to be seen now is whether there is any real knock to voting intention once we’ve got some more polls to judge by (as ever, one should never put too much weight on one poll) and, if so, whether it lasts once the immediate negative coverage of the budget fades.


286 Responses to “YouGov’s first post-budget poll”

1 2 3 4 5 6
  1. Before out to play a chess match, which I need to win, having had a stupid loss last Thursday in an inter-club game and then a great win in an intra-club match:

    The BBC News Page has report on Vincent Cable being given a rough ride at the small Business People meeting and Mr Balls had a good ride.

    The August duty rise is the trigger for their anger.

  2. @ Henry (3.30)

    “As the instigators of the massive increase in the basic rate threshold, which has taken millions out of paying tax altogether, and having pressed for the closure of stamp duty loophole for the very rich, the LDs may well benefit from the budget, certainly they deserve to.

    Henry,
    suggest that you read my post of 1.50 and the many posts in Lib Dem Voice from ex-LD members. IMO these confirm that the NHS fiasco and the 50p tax reduction far outweigh the effect of the increase in personal tax. If ex-LDs feel this way, what liklihood is there of the casual voter tending to vote LD. I am afraid that your wing of the party have taken over the whole ship whereas various past polls have shown that up to 2010 the majority of LD voters were left of centre. These voters are not coming back to a right of centre party.

  3. I think Sue Marsh has made a good point.

    Presentationally this has been a disaster for the Tories. Actually the numbers are fairly low – talking about small percentages of the whole budget of the Government (although the Government does seem to like to go after the poor).

    The ‘Granny tax’ is not particularly unfair but it was clearly hidden by the chancellor – portraying it as a simplification. This is exactly the same as GB did in the past and the words ‘stealth tax’ appear. I challenge you to say that this was introduced openly and explained that it was an aim to take away benefits that pensioners have over others. As as said, not a big problem for me but perhaps one for the Tory demographic

    The 50p tax is unfair and I do not believe the costings – again the numbers look spun and manipulated

    I have seen some LD saying the ‘Granny tax’ is not a problem because half of all pensioners earn less than the threshold. Fair enough but then the same argument could be used for increasing the threshold for income tax as the 20% lowest paid/unemployed do not pay income tax anyway.

    The income threshold increase is sold as a benefit for the poor which it is to some degree but the biggest recipients are the better paid.

    In summary this budget was in terms of numbers quite conservative but in terms of the presentation it was appalling – the parallels with Brown’s 10 p budget are marked. Any LD or Tories complaining that it is ‘unfair’ should just remember that life isn’t!

  4. Thicky that I am – I forgot the main point I was going to make.

    The biggest problem with the budget though was not on the tax or spending side but rather that the growth figures it is based on are wildly optimistic!

    I suggest that the credibility of the OBR and treasury are on the line if these are downgraded to the same extent as seen previously. The budget should be based on conservative projections not optimistic ones!

  5. @ Tinged Fringe

    “I don’t know the specifics of this recent case, but it has in the past been deemed a state’s rights issue.

    From the commentary of the Charter –
    “In order to take into account the diversity of domestic regulations on marriage, Article 9 of the Charter refers to domestic legislation. As it appears from its formulation, the provision is broader in its scope than the corresponding articles in other international instruments. Since there is no explicit reference to ‘men and women’ as the case is in other human rights instruments, it may be argued that there is no obstacle to recognize same-sex relationships in the context of marriage. There is, however, no explicit requirement that domestic laws should facilitate such marriages. International courts and committees have so far hesitated to extend the application of the right to marry to same-sex couples”.”

    Interesting. I take it there’s no equal protection clause within the Charter either?

    “Also in regards to adoption –
    “The right to adopt a child, who is not the natural child of the person concerned, is not per se included in Article 9 of the Charter. Nevertheless, the right to found a family may be interpreted as to include a state obligation to provide couples who are not able to have children adoption procedures.
    By stressing the margin of appreciation of Member States when it comes to the application of the ECHR, the European Court ruled in Fretté v. France [1]
    that Article 12 of the ECHR does not contain a right to adopt a child as such.””

    What’s humorous to me is how right wing Europe is on this issue compared to the United States. But it may not be a function of left vs. right so much as it is a wholly different understanding of family law. In the U.S., parentage is not determined by biology whereas it is in Europe.

    I’ll give you an example. A married couple in California had a kid in the 1950’s or 1960’s. They split up. The mom subsequently died and the kid was left destitute. The father refused to pay child support to the kid. Why? He claimed he wasn’t the father of the child because the child wasn’t biologically his and instead had been fathered through artificial insemination from a specifimen from another man. That was his defense when the state attempted to force him to pay for child support.

    What happenned? He was locked up and in 1967, the California Supreme Court unanimously affirmed his conviction (with the most conservative Justice writing the opinion). This was in complete contrast to earlier cases in Canada, England, Scotland which held the opposite.

    “The problem, as in the case of Shalk and Kopf vs Austria, is the Article 12 states that the right to marry and found a family is between ‘men and women’ – so those in civil partnerships do not have the right to found a family, so they do not have the fundamental right to adoption due to their biological lack of ability to have children.”

    There is a biological way to have children though. There’s artificial insemination and egg donation. Also, in many cases when opposite sex married couples adopt children, it’s usually because they are unable to naturally procreate. So how do they have any more right to adopt than a same-sex couple?

    “However – the ECHR is, like your constitution, a living document so it could be modified to drop the “men and women” part from Article 12 and gay marriage would become a fundamental right across the ECHR countries.

    Hope that’s helpful.

    [1] Fretté v. France was a case in 2002 of a homosexual man who wished to adopt a child but was essentially told he had no right to adoption as he had no right to found a family.”

    Here’s what’s fascinating. Only three states ever expressly prohibited gays and lesbians from adopting children. In one state, the law was repealed by the legislature 12 years after it was adopted (New Hampshire in 1999) and in another state it was struck down as violating the state constitution (Florida, 2010). Only one state remains with such a law: Utah (go figure). The majority of states have laws expressly permitting adoption by LGBT persons even though many of these same states prohibit marriage between same-sex couples.

  6. @ Tinged Fringe

    “To be fair to the Americans, the right to bear arms is a fundamental constitutional right.”

    Only to some. It wasn’t a fundamental right for 217 years.

    “But politically everybody knew that the NHS was treated with religious reverence, so ignoring any objective merits or downsides of the reforms, why did the government mess up the political aspect so badly?”

    Well here there is an analogy to guns. Gun control advocates don’t always listen to their constituents. Even if it’s not a fundamental right, when people have guns and like guns and want to keep their guns, they can get angry if they feel the government is trying to take them away. The NHS may not be a fundamental right but people have grown up with it but most people love it and cherish it and will get angry if they feel that politicians are trying to take it away.

  7. Amber – I will be pitching to run the NHS Doctors campaign with the same indefatigable bloody minded-ness I challenged the DWP, lol

    If they can get the resources to field 50 candidates, I’ll win them all for them ;)

    As long a I can choose the seats ;)

    Do help to persuade them I’m the gal, eh?

  8. @SUE MARSH
    ” I will be pitching to run the NHS Doctors campaign”

    I have also offered them my services for any backoffice work for gratis.

  9. Political betting article on why the Lib Dems should not be written off, is worth a read.

    http://politicalbetting.com/

    As to how the LD’s will perform at the GE, in my opinion this depends on how much influence people think they have within the coalition over the next 3 years. So far the Tories appear to be getting their way in most policy areas and in the other areas, the Tories agree with LD policy. I cannot see any Tory ministers admitting that they are implementing any policies that mainly coms from the LD’s.

  10. @ The Sheep

    “In conclusion: French adoption law is complex, the court didn’t say that, the expert quoted isn’t.”

    Lol. That’s a great line. Thank you for the link, I’m browsing it now. It’s very informative.

    No appellate court in the U.S. has ever held that same-sex marriage prohibitions don’t discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. Not one. And only a small handful of truly whack job judges have ever actually taken that position, which is not only sophistic but also kinda perverted when you really stop to think about it.

    And you’re right, the Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph are not really reporting accurately. Their analysis seems to be a lot of fluff. Confusing nevertheless.

  11. @ Sue

    Awesome. I think this will be an exciting campaign to be involved in. Have you been in touch with Richard Taylor yet? He’s going to be advisor for the campaign.
    8-)

  12. @R Huckle.
    I tried to reply to you. Moderation kicked in. I haven’t the foggiest idea why.

  13. @KeithP – At this point I reckon most of them won’t stay with UKIP”

    This could be one to watch. Before the last election there were formal approaches from Pearson, via Strathclyde, to Cameron about a pact whereby UKIP would stand down all candidates (as opposed to standing down candidates only where there was an avowed eurosceptic already standing) – in return for a referendum commitment. Cameron felt confident enough to ignore the offer.

    Given that large swathes of the Tory backbenches are already to all intents and purposes indistinguishable from UKIP, and the selection of new Tory MPs is heavily swayed towards eurosceptic candidates, there will be plenty of pressure to make a clean break with soft pedaling on Europe because of the coalition.

    In 2009 we saw the governing party slip to third place in the EU parliament elections:

    Con 27.7%, UKIP 16.5%, Lab 15.7%, LD 13.7%, Green 8.6%, BNP 6.2%.

    2014 could interesting if, as some predict, the coalition decides to dissolve itself that year.

  14. R Huckle

    Thank you for the steer to the fascinating Politicalbetting article on the LDs. I personally cannot see how the LDs can recover their national VI by much as if things start to improve the credit will go to the Tories – and if it doesn’t, well, they will sink with the Tories. However, if one factors in Antifrank’s theories, the national vote share for the LDs could sink to say 10% but in reality it is effectively the same as 16 or 17% using UNS. If one tinkers around at this level on the Provisional Boundaries swingometer with likely Lab/Con levels of support it becomes quite difficult to see how we won’t get another hung parliament yet again despite the LDs only having 10% nationwide support! Very interesting indeed!

  15. SUE MARSH

    Best of luck with trying to reverse the changes in NHS England.

    Whether the likes of Amber (whose NHS is protected just as much, or even more so, by the current Scottish Government as it would be under a Labour Scottish Government) can have any influence in your country may be debatable.

  16. @ Billy Bob

    You mentioning the European Elections has made me think.

    Given that both Conservatives and LibDems hate the closed list system, and could easily have agreed to amend it to Open List, why haven’t they done it?
    Suggestions, anyone?

  17. Good Evening All, after a successful chess match.

    Does anyone have hard information on the 2014 speculation for the Coalition?

  18. TONY DEAN

    Do the “Conservatives and LibDems hate the closed list system”?

    Normally political parties (and I include my own in that) simply want whatever produces the greatest advantage for them.

    Personally, I dislike closed lists whether for the European Parliament elections or the Scottish list seats, but unlike parties, I have this fondness for democracy.

  19. @Oldnat – “I’m happy to take your cash, but am a little unsure as to why it is thought that I need a higher personal allowance than those on the same income, but who suffer from the sin of being younger.”

    Good for you, but there are sound reasons for a differential treatment of the elderly. Most cannot go out and earn more if they find they need it – younger people still have that ability, however tough it is.

    Older people can also have greater needs in terms of living costs. 25% of people rent homes, so these pensioners will not own a house and will still need to pay rent, and heating costs for the elderly are much higher than for younger households. Think on the fact that there are still 40,000 excess winter deaths in the UK every winter, the majority of these elderly people living in cold homes.

    My personal view is that there should be a relief for low income pensioners, tapered off for higher earners – precisely what we had, although the upper level of £29,000 at which the relief was lost is too high. This should have been reduced, rather than the entire relief scrapped.

  20. @Alec

    I’m uncomfortable, as a matter of principle, on pensioners having their pensions taxed twice – however much they earn. And even if they’ve paid into a private pension. It’s just wrong :(

  21. The NHS party, great idea, all those Labour votes migrating, 50 guaranteed Tory wins, bring it on girls. :-)

  22. I read some of the comments btl on PB.

    Ugh!

    I think I need a long shower.

    The article was rubbish – amateurish, unconvincing, unscientific. Still I don’t mind. The Lib Dems can delude themselves all the way to 2015 for all I care.

  23. @ Ken

    For the most part, the Medics (retirees,in sevearal cases) are going to stand in Con/LD marginals.
    8-)

  24. @RAF

    “I’m uncomfortable… on pensioners having their pensions taxed twice”

    They don’t. Pension contributions are set against tax, and so are effectively untaxed.

  25. Having skimmed through the thread and noted one or two opinions, I’ve been pondering the notion that the budget is a turning point.

    As I said earlier, I doubt it is, although it is a big error (in my view). Individually you can argue the case for the 45% rate or the Granny tax. putting them together in this way was the problem. However, even with Telegraph headlines on the price of petrol and Milliband demanding Osborne ‘comes clean’ about his income, I don’t see this as being terminal for the government. [Interestingly, Osborne said he didn’t pay the 50% rate – he didn’t say his earnings weren’t over the £150,000 mark. With a government salary of £136,000 and rental income from a £2m property, it’s a fairly safe bet he earns more than the threshold, but presumably not as personal income].

    What I have found interesting is the reaction to the budget. Clearly, the media are no longer prepared to take the coalition at their word, and I suspect this could be the lasting impact of the budget. It had to happen sometime, but I suspect they may experience some heavy weather from here. In that sense, the budget may well be a sort of turning point.

  26. Peter Bell

    Peter thanks for your post.

    ‘…and the 50p tax reduction far outweigh the effect of the increase in personal tax.’

    Some time ago the LDs had a policy to raise the top rate of tax from 40p to 50p at a time when both the Tories and the Labour Govt refused to consider it. It was a policy I supported 100%; it meant that the LDs were unique in recognising that if those earning over 40k have to shoulder 40% tax then those earning several times more should be willing to pay 10% more.
    As you are aware the Party, rather feebly in my opinion, dropped the Policy. Several of my colleagues resigned, and I considered this, but other policies were such as to retain my loyalty. At the time the leadership responded to my opposition to losing the 50% rate as Policy by informing me future policy would concentrate on taxing wealth (such as I assume the new 7% stamp duty and the closing of loopholes to avoid stamp duty altogether rather than use the income tax rate, which in their opinion could be avoided and possibly raised little revenue, whereas wealth taxes could not.
    I am surprised therefore that there are any LD members, who did not resign over this matter at the time, but who resign now.
    As for labour, the raising of the tax to 40%, after being happy for thirteen years with 40%, was a clever ploy as they knew the Tories would change back to 40%, and this would provide the opportunity to embarrass the Tories. If they had any belief at all in a higher rate, which I and many other LDs had, they would have introduced it years earlier.
    So to conclude Peter why have you left the LDs when they as a Coalition Partner have accepted a 45% higher rate, rather than resigned when the LDs changed their policies and accepted as LD Policy (not a Coalition compromise) to accept 40% as the highest rate?

  27. AMBER………..As I said, 50 Tory wins. :-)

  28. @Robin

    Ah!

  29. Alec

    ‘What I have found interesting is the reaction to the budget. Clearly, the media are no longer prepared to take the coalition at their word, and I suspect this could be the lasting impact of the budget. It had to happen sometime, but I suspect they may experience some heavy weather from here. In that sense, the budget may well be a sort of turning point.’

    You are right and the right wing press, Mail, Telegraph, Times etc, have used this as an opportunity to attack the LDs and Liberal leaning DC. They appear to hate anything Liberal as much as the left.

  30. Robin

    “I’m uncomfortable… on pensioners having their pensions taxed twice”

    ‘They don’t. Pension contributions are set against tax, and so are effectively untaxed’

    Absolutely right Robin.

  31. Alec

    i think you missed the critical point in my post ” a higher personal allowance than those on the same income”.

    What on earth makes you think that I can’t go out and earn more money if I need to? Yes, heating costs are higher for those who are in the house all day – exactly the same for the retired as for those who are unemployed. Your comparison is not accurate.

    I note your view that relief for low income pensioners should exist, and then be tapered off.

    However, the lowest income pensioners don’t pay income tax at all, and why should those pensioners with higher income have a higher personal allowance than those younger people on the same income who are trying to bring up a family on that income?

    Honestly, us oldies aren’t necessarily the basket cases you youngsters seem to imagine that we are.

    Thanks all the same. Your generosity will help fund my trip to China. When you are my age, you might get to do that too.

  32. Ken
    ‘The NHS party, great idea, all those Labour votes migrating, 50 guaranteed Tory wins, bring it on girls.’

    While you are absolutely correct; and the Tories will benefit. However, I am not happy with the NHS professionals playing politics with the NHS.

  33. HENRY

    English politics is fascinating. You prefer amateurs “playing politics with the NHS.”

    How 19th century Olympian!

  34. Amberstar
    ‘Not so much; I think the Times haven’t included the fuel duty increase; & when fuel duty increases, the price of everything else goes up too, because hauliers pass it on.’

    You may be right. However this still means that the Times headlines and article totally contradicts their own analysis. Clearly NC and DC have upset the right wing press who have made an all out attack on the Coalition, using illogical and self contradictory arguments. What is worse than Labour to the right wing press, are soft Liberal politicans like DC and NC, who support the NHS (which the far right do not), care for the poor and the vulnerable (which the far right does not) and introduce social reform like gay marriage, against which the far right is totally opposed.

  35. @Henry

    That there’s isn’t a great deal between you.and DC (according to you) confirms my view that the remaining Lib Dems are likely.to end up as National Liberals.

  36. HENRY

    Clearly, English politics is even more interesting than I thought. You have a “far right” of electoral significance? the English seem so French. :-)

  37. HENRY…………I think people are smarter than the ladies think, single issue parties have a disastrous record……..quite rightly. And you identify the weakness of this daftness, the idea of a load of grumpy old medics on big pensions, preaching about more money for their already overpaid colleagues, will not play well in wealthy marginals.

  38. OldNat

    English politics is fascinating. You prefer amateurs “playing politics with the NHS.”

    I think the NHS professionals could do much to put their own house in order. They are far too confident (almost arrogant) that they are beyond improvement. I am one who has benefitted from the technology in the NHS which was funded by the Labour Govt and for which I am grateful; however, in my view without some of the mistakes and lack of professionalism of some in the NHS, the technology and superb theatre work, which has ultimately failed in my case, would not have been necessary.

  39. RAF
    That there’s isn’t a great deal between you.and DC (according to you) confirms my view that the remaining Lib Dems are likely.to end up as National Liberals.

    I have never indicated that I do not agree with what NC and DC are trying to achieve. They are opposed by Labour (fair enough) but also what I would term the far right including several members of the Tory Party, apparently the MEPs in particular.

  40. @Old Nat

    By long standing tradition, English Politics is an Amateur Sport taken up by Noted School Boys. Professionals simply don’t belong…

  41. OldNat
    Clearly, English politics is even more interesting than I thought. You have a “far right” of electoral significance? the English seem so French.

    I have been told that if an Englishman wants to be accepted in France he must demonstrate an interest in politics, relgion and in food. Whereas in polite English society none of these are ever discussed. Maybe that’s why the English and French have communication problems.

  42. @Oldnat – as I said, good for you. You’re lucky. Let’s build tax policy on the basis that everyone is lucky.

    Realistically, most 78 year old’s would struggle to go out and find work. Sure – there are working age unemployed people, but they do still have more options to try and earn something that the 78 year old.

    Most people also find that they require higher levels of thermal comfort than younger people – it’s a biological thing and nothing to do with being in the house all day, and the reason why it’s primarily older people that die from being cold in the winter.

    I completely agree that not all old people are basket cases – but tens of thousands of them die unnecessarily every year from the cold, so I would say that there are fair few of them in trouble.

    There will always be anomalies of course, but I would always tend towards basing tax and welfare policies on the needs of the vulnerable, as opposed to the needs of those who can afford holidays in China.

  43. HENRY

    i am delighted to learn that there is a “polite English society”. Actually, I interact with such on a regular basis. They are family.

    The medics among them seem universally hostile to the NHS proposals – doubtless some will suggest that they suffer from some genetic deficit in not being able to embrace the value of privatisation. Alternatively, there may be genuine differences between th political cultures of the component parts of the UK.

  44. HENRY………..There are over half a million French residents in London, we are their 5th/6th biggest city, communication is definitely improving. However, they do have to pay when they visit a GP in France………Perhaps we should introduce a charge here, most of our European neighbours do.
    Obviously, in its present state the NHS is unaffordable, going forward the challenges are enormous, ageing population, longevity problems, more sophisticated and expensive treatments, mission creep, a huge growing black hole of costs. We are changing the model, next up, more efficiency by better management, the previous model couldn’t deal with the changing world. :-)

  45. Sue Marsh

    “”Anyone who made a fuss over the Brown 10p tax budget fiasco really can’t claim media bias eh? (John B Dick you know who you are, lol)”

    I was not one of those who made cut’n’paste partisan complaints about the 10p tax cut though I see a parallell with the “Granny Tax” in PR terms.

    Nor have I complained about media bias against the right and am well aware that the bias is in another direction.

    My point above was that the seemingly out of character criticism of the Granny Tax was not about media bias but lazy journalism and light staffing of newspapers.

    The exigencies, timescales, and economics of newspaper production are a factor in political discourse. A couple of weeks ago both the Herald and the Scotsman carried reports under similar headline(presumably originating in an agency ) to the effect that the Scottish Health Secretary had warned that the Health Bill would have an effect on the Scottish NHS.

    Both pieces made clear, in the detail of the story was that the Scottish Health Secretary had said that welfare changes would affect Scotland, but her main point was the opposite of the headline, that devolution would protect the Scottish NHS (which is her remit).

    “Granny Tax” is just too good to miss, especially if you think it wil go viral.

    This comes back to Amber’s point: Do the press lead or follow? I take the view that the press are (like lawyers, and bankers) putting their own short-term interests first. Doing work you can avoid, or leaving the office on a wet day to go looking for a story isn’t appealing. Employing someone else to do ‘phone hacking, and printing celebrity and political press releases without challenging them, is something you can do without even getting out of bed.

  46. OldNat

    ‘The medics among them seem universally hostile to the NHS proposals – doubtless some will suggest that they suffer from some genetic deficit in not being able to embrace the value of privatisation.’

    All the more strange as many (most) of the NHS consultants I have been treated by and there have been quite a few, also practice private medicine. Also many of the nurses are contract staff and alot of the services, such as auditing, are undertaken by private contractors. Most of the new buildings have been financed privately I believe.

    So are the NHS professionals really worried about the private sector, when they are personally so heavily involved or is it they do not welcome reform? Will these non-political (except they are anti-coalition) NHS candidates be vetted to ensure that they are not involved in any way with the distasteful private sector.

  47. Ken

    Perhaps the EU could serve a useful purpose here in comparing the value for money, quality of service provided by each EU country; likewise UN could provide a world wide comparison with say Canada, New Zealand, China, India and Brazil.

  48. @ Henry (11.16)

    “So to conclude Peter why have you left the LDs when they as a Coalition Partner have accepted a 45% higher rate, rather than resigned when the LDs changed their policies and accepted as LD Policy (not a Coalition compromise) to accept 40% as the highest rate?”

    Henry,
    First of all, if you had read my earlier posts you would have seen that my prime reason for resigning was the decision to support the Health and Social Care Bill. I only commented that the reduction in the 50 p rate confirmed that I had made the correct decision.

    Re your comments on 50p vs 45p vs 40p. Although I voted Lib Dem from the launch of the party (previously Lab then SDP) and delivered Focus leaflets for about 8 years, I have only been a member for about four years – probably after the change in policy re highest rate of tax (I certainly don’t remember it). Regardless, a change in policy to increase the top rate of tax is totally different to reducing the top rate when the rest of the population is suffering. IMO this is why many members (some of whom have many years of membership) are now leaving the party.

    Your posts over many months have indicated to me that you are of the Clegg/Laws/Alexander wing of the party. Most new members in recent years were centre/left and as such will either have left, are considering leaving or are staying under sufference. Posts on Lib Dem Voice would support this POV.

  49. John B Dick
    ‘This comes back to Amber’s point: Do the press lead or follow? I take the view that the press are (like lawyers, and bankers) putting their own short-term interests first. Doing work you can avoid, or leaving the office on a wet day to go looking for a story isn’t appealing. Employing someone else to do ‘phone hacking, and printing celebrity and political press releases without challenging them, is something you can do without even getting out of bed.’

    Maybe this is why the Times write headlines and articles that contradict their own analysis. The analysis has been done by a third Party and rather than read it and reflect it, they pick up others press releases without even checking their own analysis.

  50. @ Henry

    Cameron, Clegg, Lansley – all said that they had the backing of medical professionals for the NHS Bill. ‘Economical with the actualité’ is a phrase which could be used to describe that. The Coalition brought the medical professionals into it; then pretended to have paused to listen to their concerns; then showed the listening thing had been a nonsense by carrying on regardless.

    But you seem to expect retired doctors, who wish to consider standing as MPs, to be squeaky clean, utterly principled & without the tiniest hint of hypocrisy….. that’s almost LOL funny.
    8-)

1 2 3 4 5 6