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New Clause 15 - Repeal of Tax Credits Regulations 2015

Part of Welfare Reform and Work Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:00 am on 20th October 2015.

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Photo of Emily Thornberry Emily Thornberry Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions) 10:00 am, 20th October 2015

My hon. Friend makes a powerful point. There are many arguments against the tax credit cuts, and although it is tempting to rehearse all of them this morning, another debate is going on elsewhere. Essentially, I cut down a long speech to a short one to make the main points.

I was talking about the policy being a failure in moral terms, as my hon. Friend illustrates well. The focus today might be down in the Chamber, but members of this Committee have the real power. They have in our hands the power to do the right thing and to put the interests of working families in their constituencies ahead of the interests of their party. They have in their hands the power to put the interests of children in some of the poorest working families first, remembering that, even as things stand, two thirds of children in poverty have a parent in work. How much worse will it be after they have suffered the cuts to tax credits?

I am sure that Conservative Members who have an interest in this field are, deep down, genuinely and gravely concerned. When we put the new clause to the  vote and when their Whip holds up the piece of paper saying no, will they look aside, think about the thousands of their constituents who will be so greatly affected by the Bill and vote with their conscience, vote the right way, and stop this now?