join donate discuss

Green Party reacts to the budget


Co-leader Carla Denyer was on the ground in Westminster on Thursday to react to chancellor Jeremy Hunt’s Autumn statement. Our full reaction to the statement can be found here (with a link through to our 10-point alternative). Carla also made this short film for our social media channels (Twitter).   The Independent picked up on Carla’s reaction in an article reporting on criticism of the chancellor ‘tinkering at the edges’ of the transition to net zero: “The Government has chosen headline-grabbing pre-election tax cut bribes over doing their job properly – providing good public services and protecting citizens from harm caused by the cost-of-living crisis and the climate crisis. The country cannot afford pre-election tax cut bribes from this failed Tory Government. They mean postponing, yet again, the action we need to tackle the climate crisis – action that would create new, secure, well-paid green jobs.”

Carla spoke to BBC News (Twitter). She told viewers that the Green Party would rebalance the tax system. “We would equalise capital gains tax and income tax… Capital gains tax is taxed at a lower rate than income tax from work. That’s fundamentally unfair because it means wealthy people are being taxed less than working people, so we would rebalance that… We’d use the money raised to invest in the NHS; making sure that people are paid a decent inflation matching pay rise; making sure you can get to see a dentist… we would lift the two-child benefit cap [which] holds hundreds of thousands of children down in poverty unnecessarily.” 

Radio 4 news chose a clip of Carla reacting to plans to change the welfare system which could force many sick and disabled people to work or lose their benefits. She said: “Our universal credit system is already pretty cruel and callous. It involves quite dehumanising assessments for disabled people especially and yet from the announcement that we’ve seen in this Autumn statement it looks like that could get even worth. 

Speaking to Times Radio Carla questioned whether, due to thresholds for income tax and national insurance remaining frozen, it is actually going to be a tax cut at all for most working people. “I think… freezing those thresholds is a defacto tax rise, and in fact the minimum wage increase, although very welcome will push more people above those thresholds…. It is actually only the wealthiest 20% of people that will see an effective tax cut at all. And the rest of society will be paying for that.”