We're NOT all in this together: Only 27 per cent of British public think pain of cuts is being shared equally
Andrew Grice has been Political Editor of The Independent since 1998. He was previously Political Editor of The Sunday Times, where he worked for 10 years, and he has been a Westminster-based journalist since 1982. His column, Inside Politics, appears in The Independent each Saturday.
Tuesday 27 November 2012
George Osborne has failed to persuade the public that the pain of the Government’s spending cuts is being shared fairly, according to a ComRes survey for The Independent.
By a margin of more than 2-1, people do not believe the Chancellor’s mantra that “we are all in it together” in the battle to tackle the nation’s deficit. The finding is a setback as Mr Osborne, who is hoping to convince voters that the better off are taking their fair share of the tax rises and spending cuts when he delivers his autumn statement a week tomorrow. He is expected to announce higher taxes on expensive properties to balance more cuts in welfare.
According to ComRes, only 27 per cent of people think the Chancellor has proved “we are all in it together” since 2010, while 61 per cent disagree. Only half (51 per cent) of Conservative supporters have been persuaded, while four in 10 (39 per cent) have not been. Only 22 per cent of Labour voters say the pain has been shared fairly, while 71 per cent do not. Men (31 per cent ) are more likely to agree that “we are all in it together” than women (23 per cent) , a finding which underlines the Government’s unpopularity amongst women.
A majority of the British public think the Government should introduce higher taxes on owning homes worth more than £1m (64 per cent) while 31 per cent oppose the idea. Support is lowest in the South East (56 per cent), perhaps reflecting the higher property prices in the region.
This finding is a boost for the Liberal Democrats, coming as Nick Clegg is trying to persuade Mr Osborne to announce a higher taxes on homes worth more than £1m in next week’s statement. The “quad” which takes the Coalition’s key decisions – Mr Osborne, Mr Clegg, David Cameron and Danny Alexander, the Lib Dem Chief Treasury Secretary – failed to reach agreement on the package when they held a negotiating session on Monday and further talks will be held this week.
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