PMQs: Johnson hits back at Starmer's NI levy criticism
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Boris Johnson erupted at Labour Leader Sir Keir Starmer in a lively Prime Minister’s Questions row on social care. Sir Keir attacked the Tory Government with the same arguments from Tuesday and claimed that increases to the National Insurance tax to pay for social care were not fair. The Labour leader remarked that his plan was to see that those with the most wealth and “broadest shoulders” carried the biggest cost load to resolve the social care problems.
Mr Johnson was able to fire back against these claims by revealing that in 2018 the Labour Party had its own plans to introduce a tax hike to National Insurance in order to pay for social care.
Mr Johnson said: “I have been scouring the records for evidence of the Labour plan and I found it.
“In 2018, the current Shadow Secretary of state for social care, Liz Kendall, joined forces with Nick Boles and Norman Lamb to promote a new dedicated health and social care tax.
“This was based on National Insurance, where is she? I can’t see her in her place, Mr Speaker.”
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The Tory bench then erupted in cheers and laughter.
Mr Johnson continued: “She said this was to be this country’s beverage moment.
“Is the Labour Party really going to vote against the new beverage moment tonight?”
Sir Keir replied by quoting the Prime Minister from a speech he made in 2002, when he was the MP for Henley.
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Sir Keir said: “Let me tell you what an ambitious MP for Henley said in 2002 in this House.
“What he said was that National Insurance increases are regressive.
“I wonder what happened to him
“If the Prime Minister is going ahead with this unfair tax can he at least tell us this, will his plan clear the NHS waiting list backlog by the end of this Parliament?”
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The Prime Minister responded by arguing that at least the Tory Government has a plan on this issue, much to the delight of his backbenchers.
MPs will vote on the National Insurance tax increase in the Commons today.
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