Osborne gets a good press this morning but Britain is in serious economic trouble
By Tim Montgomerie
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There may be a Leveson effect but the Chancellor will nonetheless be pleased with today's newspaper frontpages and the warm noises made by the country's three biggest centre right newspapers:
- "Mr Osborne has played a difficult hand with some considerable skill. And after Ed Balls’s truly atrocious performance yesterday, the Chancellor has proved himself an infinitely safer guardian of our nation’s future than the alternative." - Daily Mail leader
- The Sun Says: "After the disasters of Mr Osborne’s earlier “pasty tax” Budget, this was a genuine attempt to be more in tune with ordinary voters. Curbing benefits while lifting more of the low-paid out of tax is a welcome step towards righting the imbalance between work and welfare."
- The Autumn Statement strikes a difficult balance between what needs to be done and what the public will accept - The Telegraph
"The compromises of coalition government prevent the kind of radical, supply-side, tax-cutting agenda that might stand some chance of breaking the mould. What we seem to have is a kind of “New Labour-lite” approach to government in which the Treasury constantly shrinks away from what really needs to be done."
Ed Balls deservedly gets a terrible press this morning. Max Hastings goes for his jugular, noting that his and Labour's economic recipe adds up to poison. The Coalition has not been able to stop Britain becoming a debt-ridden economy and the only serious political alternative would make it worse. It is not a happy situation.