Grant Shapps takes swipe at Keir Starmer over pension plans: 'He will tax it!'

Grant Shapps takes swipe at Keir Starmer over pension plans: 'He will tax it!'
Ben Chapman

By Ben Chapman

Published: 12/06/2024

- 10:33

DEFENCE Secretary Grant Shapps has insisted that the Conservatives’ tax plans can be funded by welfare cuts, while praising the "bold ideas" of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.

He told GB News: “There are £17 billion essentially in tax cuts…but also assistance for people with things like help to buy, so you'll be able to buy a house with a 5% deposit.

“We’ll permanently scrap stamp duty and for pensioners, we’ll have the triple lock plus. That means your pension under the Conservatives, your state pension will never be taxed, unlike under Starmer who will tax your pension…

“First of all, we've said that we will deal with the ballooning of the welfare budget…

“If we do nothing, we think it's about £90 billion pounds more and all we're looking to do is get £12 billion from that budget.”

On Rishi Sunak’s leadership, he said: “I actually think it takes quite a big person to be prepared to say, ‘you know what? I'm not perfect, and I make mistakes’ and he has done that and I think that's the right thing to do.

“Secondly, he's actually somebody who's also prepared to sometimes do the really difficult things. It's not always easy, being a Prime Minister or in a position of power or authority,

“He is someone who doesn't just sort of snipe from the sidelines. He has positive, solid ideas.

“And you've seen in our manifesto, he has some big bold ideas, which I think is much to his credit.”

Asked about his own prospects at the election, he said: “As far as my seat’s concerned. I'd rather leave it to the electorate than all these opinion polls.

“Just last month, there was an election here in my seat and based on that I most likely would have won that constituency. I'm not saying I will, I’m saying just let's wait until people have voted.

“As far as I'm aware, not a single person has yet voted in the General Election in this country and I know that a lot of commentators have been telling us it's all over. There have been surprises before, let's wait and see.”

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