There'll be no cuts to frontline services under a Tory government, says Cameron
Highlights of David Cameron's Marr interview; not verbatim.
David Cameron told Andrew Marr that he did not accept the suggestion that he'd only detailed about 17% to 20% of the spending cuts that will be necessary. Under constant questioning about the scale of the cuts that are likely to be made by the next government, Mr Cameron declined to enlarge on what he had already said. The Tory leader conceded that what he had announced so far was "not enough" but he would not accept cuts to the NHS, international development or frontline services. He also guaranteed to protect the most vulnerable in society. He repeated Tory promises on raising the retirement age, sanctions for welfare abusers and scrapping ID cards.
He refused to rule out a VAT rise but said that it was absolutely not what he wanted to do, or planned to do.
Mr Cameron told Andrew Marr that a new war cabinet - fully constituted - would be his top priority if elected Prime Minister so that Britain's troops in Afghanistan got the best equipment and strategic direction. He repeated his promise to regularly include the principal opposition leaders in this war cabinet so that cross-party support for the troops' mission could be maintained.
The Tory also promised to reform parliament's "absurd" working hours. Parliament should be back in September getting on with progressing the people's business. It shouldn't, he said, have fundamentally different hours from the rest of the population. There'll be no "three month holiday" for MPs.
He refused to be drawn on what he'd do in the event of a hung parliament. I want a Tory majority, he said, a hung parliament is not what Britain needs but I'll be constructive if that is the result.