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Dishonest Brown plans to paint David Cameron as 'Mr 10% Cuts'

Picture 3Undeterred by the disbelieving response from Fleet Street to his attempts to paint David Cameron as a 'cutter' Gordon Brown has ordered Cabinet ministers to present the Conservative leader as 'Mr 10%' and the Labour Party is offering activists a web graphic that reinforces the point.

Mr Brown writes the following in The Sunday Mirror:

"The Tories want to cut public spending by a savage 10 per cent. They have finally revealed what their true priorities are: a cuts plan that is wide, deep and immediate in order to fund a £200,000 tax cut for the 3,000 richest families. David Cameron – Mr 10 Per Cent – would actually make the recession worse, by slowing public spending at exactly the time we need it most. And the impact wouldn’t just be felt in our national economy, but at the level it matters most in your school, your hospital, your neighbourhood. Cuts of 10 per cent would mean 44,000 fewer teachers, 15,000 fewer police, 10,000 fewer soldiers and, each year, 32,000 fewer university places. Those aren't just numbers on the page, but real jobs hanging in the balance."

Blairite John Rentoul in the Independent on Sunday is dismissive of the Prime Minister's tactic but admits that "there remains a quark of truth in Brown's dishonesty." Rentoul writes: "The choice at the next election will be between a Labour Party that is more concerned to preserve spending on public services, and a Tory party that is more worried about the huge gap between revenue and spending that is bridged by unprecedented borrowing."  A PoliticsHome survey of Westminster insiders agreed that the Conservatives were slightly more likely to cut public spending than Labour although there was also agreement that Labour was being dishonest about the cuts it was going to be required to make because of rising borrowing costs.

The Sunday Times reports "senior aides" to George Osborne saying that "a Conservative government would seek to cut public spending faster and more deeply than Labour."

090614 NELSONSCOLUMN The reality is that massive cuts are going to be necessary.  The Economist says a 5.7% improvement in Britain's primary budget balance is going to be necessary.  Fraser Nelson, who has led the way in talking about the need for spending reduction, writes this in today's News of the World:

"Every day, the national debt rises by a scandalous £340 MILLION. A bill we are leaving on our children to pay. Polls show the public are well ahead of the politicians – with a stunning 72 per cent demanding cuts. The truth is that Labour and Tory plans for cuts are, at present, identical. The only difference is who will axe what. Brown could have said “I’ll cut better.” Idiotically, he has instead chosen to lie instead -  claiming that he wouldn’t cut at all. People KNOW that government spending is bankrupting our country. We can see the waste, everywhere. The quangos. The NHS supercomputer that doesn’t work. The expensive welfare state that breeds poverty. “Cuts” is not a four-letter word. Not any more. But we need the right cuts: cutting the fat, not the flesh. Barack Obama came to power promising America the “change we need.” In Britain, it’s the case of the cuts we need. And the opportunity facing Cameron is to say that only he can be trusted to deliver them."

Tim Montgomerie

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