The coalition government have, up to now, been fastidiously careful not to rattle the cage of a section of society well-known for its mainly Conservative leanings. It seems likely that any dent in this traditional groundswell of support could have disastrous consequences for the Tory Party's chances of remaining on the political map come 2015 and election time.
Commentators who support the changes will focus on the simplification of the welfare system and improvement in work incentives that this new benefit will herald. Those worried about the impacts will wring their hands about likely difficulties with on-line claims, financial management and a small number of people who stand to receive less than under the current system. Both of these groups have a point.
Iain Duncan Smith was riled to be "ambushed" on a radio programmed (not guilty) and challenged to survive on the £53 a week that a benefit claimant said he had to subsist on. It was not really an ambush as such - Iain's job is being a politician, and so talking to people who might not agree with his every utterance and who might have issues with his policies and the direction the government is taking is, sort of, his job and deliberately going on a radio programme to talk about benefit scroungers does rather leave one open to that sort of thing.
There is no doubt that Michael Philpott is a uniquely revolting piece of work, of the type that shames our species, but the Mail's disgustingly manipulative attempt to use the horrendous deaths of six children as a vindication of the Coalition's ruthless victimisation of the unemployed, is no less repellent.
As his lips curled around the stained mug and the hot mud water reached his throat, he wished for the umpteenth time that he had never said that he could easily live on £53 a week. Iain did not know exactly how many times he'd wished this. He just knew it was more than he'd had non-tea or abuse bricks thrown through the window.
Poverty in Britain is real, and it is getting worse. In a decent society, nobody should be forced to go to a food bank in order to feed their kids or be forced to go without heating when temperatures plummet. But even the government admits that this Welfare Uprating Bill alone will put 200,000 more children into poverty.