Income

Burnham says the Labor government should roll back the 1p income tax cut and bring the rate back to 45p

Andy Burnham has said a future Labor government should reverse the 1p income tax cut and bring the rate back to 45p, in a challenge to party leader Sir Keir Starmer.

The Labor mayor said the plans, unveiled by the chancellor on Friday, are not focused enough.

“I don’t think now is the time to cut taxes, now is the time to support people through this crisis,” he said.

His comments go further than members of the Shadow Cabinet, who criticized the decision to cut the maximum rate for those earning over £150,000.

Party sources also said it would not be appropriate to outline the party’s tax plans potentially two years after a general election.

The Mayor of Greater Manchester called the Tories’ mini-budget a “blatant act of vandalism to the social cohesion of this country”.

Speaking to Sky News’ Sophy Ridge On Sunday, he said: ‘You have a budget that spends billions on the richest people in the country and actually does nothing of any significance to help people get through fall and winter.

“So, honestly, I can hardly believe it. Having been through a period of national unity, how I would characterize it Friday’s budget was a flagrant act of vandalism to the social cohesion of this country.

“The government drew battle lines with the workers – they told us which side they were on.”

But shadow cabinet minister Ed Miliband rejected calls to reverse the 1p tax cut. “I don’t think we should reverse this tax cut,” he said, pointing to analysis which showed those earning up to £155,000 would be worse off.

Prime Minister Liz Truss vowed to ‘launch a decade of momentum’ as she defended tax cuts amid criticism that they disproportionately help the wealthy.

The Labor Party has accused the Prime Minister and Kwasi Kwarteng of a “trickle down” which they say will make things worse for the next generation.

Ms Truss insisted she was ‘unapologetic’ in her ‘relentless focus on economic growth’, even as the £45billion tax cut package sent the pound plummeting further lowest for 37 years.

Andy Burnham also urged his party to back electoral reform as he said it was now “likely” the UK would have a Labor government within the next two years.

The party’s annual conference is being held this week in Liverpool.