THE BLOG
20/10/2015 10:16 BST | Updated 20/10/2016 06:12 BST

It Is Time for the Chancellor to Show the Leadership He So Badly Craves and Scrap This Disastrous Tax Credit Policy

The Lib Dems warned about the £12billion of welfare saving and the impact on communities. But in the heat of an election people get tired of claim and counterclaim and people thought: 'I've heard the PM rule it out'. Their tax credits were safe. But yet again, the PR man put some spin on a story. Now working people are set to lose out.

David Cameron stood on a stage at the last debate during the General Election and was asked a simple question about cutting tax credits, I know because I was there in Leeds. He said: "No I don't want to do that."

He then said: "This report out there is something I rejected in my time as Prime Minister and I reject today."

So many people went to the ballot box thinking that their help and support was safe. They heard vague phrases about reforming welfare.

The Lib Dems warned about the £12billion of welfare saving and the impact on communities. But in the heat of an election people get tired of claim and counterclaim and people thought: 'I've heard the PM rule it out'. Their tax credits were safe.

But yet again, the PR man put some spin on a story. Now working people are set to lose out. For many people tax credits are a lifeline.

As someone from a working class background who saw my mum struggle I know how hard it is, I get how hard people work and how little they get back. Tax Credits offer real help.

The independent and well respected Institute for Fiscal Studies has said three million families are likely to lose an average of £1,000 a year, as a result of changes to tax credits.

The government has argued the introduction of the National Living Wage (NLW) will raise incomes for many people when it is introduced in April 2016.

They also, in their briefings, had the gall to say the Lib Dem flagship policy higher personal allowance thresholds meant many people will pay less income tax. This comes from the man who said in 2010, we couldn't afford income tax cuts!

But their claims have been shot to pieces by the think-tank the Resolution Foundation - who have analysed all the changes, taking into account the NLW and new income tax thresholds.

They claim that by 2020, a low-earning single parent, with one child, who works 20 hours a week, and who earns £9.35 an hour, will end up £1,000 a year worse off.

A low-earning couple with two children, also on £9.35 an hour, will be £850 a year worse off.

And yet, the Tories still call themselves the 'Workers' Party'. They are more like the Poll Tax party revisited. My party will work with anyone to try and make the Chancellor see sense.

People on all side of the debate seem to realise what this will do to people just getting by and just above the breadline.

My message to the Chancellor is clear: It is time for the Chancellor to show the leadership he so badly craves and scrap this disastrous policy.

Tim Farron is the leader of the Liberal Democrats, and MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale