OSBORNE ACCUSED OF ‘MISLEADING’ OVER PLANNED CUTS

OSBORNE ACCUSED OF ‘MISLEADING’ OVER PLANNED CUTS

 

TORIES MUST RESPECT SNP ANTI-AUSTERITY MANDATE

George Osborne’s economic credibility has been called even further into question today – after searing criticism from the IFS accused the Chancellor of “misleading” people on the extent of cuts planned.

New IFS evidence today suggested that the Tory government will need to slash spending by 15 per cent on non-protected departments over the next three years – and described the UK Government’s previous claims about the scale of the cuts planned “give a misleading impression”.

The IFS criticism comes as the Tory Chancellor faces widespread condemnation for his announcement of further extreme budget cuts announced today – including £4.5bn in the current financial year leading to an additional cut of around £170m to the agreed Scottish budget.

Commenting, SNP MSP Kenneth Gibson said:

“The cuts agenda of George Osborne and the Tory government was already widely discredited and economically illiterate – and today the IFS have delivered a further blow to the Chancellor’s credibility, in addition to yesterday’s report from the OECD saying deep spending cuts are hampering economic growth.  Not content with delivering these cuts to public services, it now emerges that the Tories have been misleading people about the extreme scale of the cuts needed to meet their targets.

“Five years of Tory austerity has done too much damage already; working families and vulnerable people cannot afford even more cuts from the UK Government. At Holyrood and at Westminster, the SNP will continue to make the strong case for an alternative to austerity to ensure the most vulnerable people in our society do not continue to face the brunt of unfair Tory cuts.

“Whether George Osborne likes it or not, people in Scotland spoke loudly and decisively at the General Election – and gave the SNP an unprecedented mandate to pursue an end to Westminster’s ideological obsession with austerity cuts.

“The UK Government must now respect that mandate – and put a stop to the deep cuts to the Scottish budget which are hurting people in communities across the country.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

The IFS comments are reported here: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/jun/04/obsorne-misleading-cuts-needed-balance-books-ifs-spending-squeeze