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Part of Finance (No. 3) Bill – in the House of Commons at 5:15 pm on 19th November 2018.

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Photo of Peter Dowd Peter Dowd Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury 5:15 pm, 19th November 2018

My hon. Friend is right. I am afraid that the Government are in denial over the question of child poverty; I will come back to that point shortly.

Quite simply, the Prime Minister and those around her have lost the plot; and there have been plenty of plots recently. This Government would not know progress if it stared them in the face, which is why we need new clauses 1, 2 and 3. It is little wonder that the Government have presided over eight years of economic ineptitude that have seen our tax system and society becoming increasingly unequal.

As I said on Second Reading, Labour will not stand in the way of any change that would put additional income into the pockets of low and middle earners. Maybe that answers the question of Leo Docherty, so he might not have to look at Hansard. Low and middle earners have borne the brunt of the economic failure of this Government and we will not take that cash out of their pockets. However, we believe that the richest in our society and those with the broadest shoulders should pay more tax to help support our public services and finally end austerity. This is not a controversial view, at least among the morally orthodox.