Clause 1. — ;(Charge of Income Tax for 1955–56 and Surtax Rates for 1954–55.)

Part of Orders of the Day — Finance Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27th April 1955.

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Photo of Mr Samuel Silverman Mr Samuel Silverman , Nelson and Colne 12:00 am, 27th April 1955

The hon. Member is quite right to be ironic. I understand the irony of his interjection. He does not think that it is dreadful and we do; and that is the whole point of the debate.

It is conceded that the devastating analysis of the Budget proposals, which was made on the first day of the Budget debate by my right hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, South (Mr. Gaitskell), was in no way wrong in its figures, or description of what the effect was. That is not the issue. It is admitted that he was right. I think that it was admitted by every speaker in the debate. The right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor admitted it.

The difference is whether we regard that as a good thing or a bad thing to do. There is no doubt about what the effect is. One has only to look at the Financial Statement and the tables on Income Tax to see that my right hon. Friend was really guilty of considerable understatement in his criticism of the effect. That is not the dispute. The dispute is whether it is good social and economic policy to do it and we say that it would be good social and economic policy to do it another way.