James Forsyth

Will the Budget surprise be meeting the child poverty target?

Will the Budget surprise be meeting the child poverty target?
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All New Labour Budgets contain an apparently good news story which has not been briefed out in advance. The idea is that this then becomes a key part of the Budget day story.

One rumour doing the rounds in Westminster tonight is that tomorrow’s surprise will be that the cash will be provided to put back on track Labour’s manifesto pledge to halve child poverty by 2010 and end it by 2020. To do this would cost just over £4 billion and I can just imagine Brown loving the idea of paying for this by raising some taxes on the rich. This is exactly the kind of dividing line that Brown likes. He also might think that this move would emphasise ‘his moral compass’, an instrument that the McBride affair has revealed to be seriously defective.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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