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Press Cycle 11: VAT Relief Act
What do you make of Labour's VAT Relief Act?

Deadline is 23:59 BST on the 4th of October.

Remember to bold taglines!
The Labour VAT failure is the latest Labour failure and further indicative that they belong absolutely nowhere near 10 Downing. If it wasn’t for the quick thinking of another party their legislation would have signaled a massive rude gesture to the European Union whose rules we have agreed to abide by. While Labour dawdles with pipe dreams Conservatives are hard at work for the people from our crime bill to keep the public safe to our soon budget which will improve the lives of millions.
Defence, Energy, Trade Secretary 1994-
 Westminster North
The Conservatives are complaining that this bill, now amended to fulfil our obligations to our European partners, should be voted down because it 'binds their hands.' 

We know the truth: the Tories, not Labour, bound their own government's hands when they told the electorate they would not hike VAT on domestic fuel and electricity before proceeding to do so. In the wake of their broken promises lie pensioners and hard working families now being unable to heat their own homes. The Conservative Party's straw clutching will not reverse that, but the Labour Party's bill will.
Permit me to state the facts of this matter: In 1992, the Conservative Party gleefully demagogued the tax issue in order to win the election. They promised not to raise taxes, specifically assuring the British people that they would not extend the Value Added Tax to electricity and fuel. They swiftly broke that promise, and instituted an 8% VAT on electricity and fuel. Furthermore, this rate is soon to rise to 17.5%. This tax exists because of Conservative Party deception. This tax further burdens those least able to pay it. All of the cries of horror about our relationship with the European Community is a lot of tosh, since the clerical error in the bill was repaired. Having said that, I wonder where the Conservative Party of Margaret Thatcher went to. For all of my disagreements with her, she was willing to fight for years to get Britain a better deal from the European Community. Now the Tories, who oppose granting any power to Edinburgh or Cardiff, are more than happy to allow Brussels and Berlin to set our tax rates. This is the bottom line: the Conservative Party has lied its way to imposing an unfair tax on Britain's poor and pensioners, they will more than double that tax, and they are counting on the European Community to force Great Britain to maintain this tax. If it rises to 17.5%, it will be nearly impossible to reduce it below 15%.
Max Power, Labour
MP for Oxford East (1987-present)
Shadow Foreign Secretary (1994-present)
I'm just back from the House of Commons where I voted against this act, although I agree with the principle. Labour can pontificate about the details as much as they want, but the intent is here. This bill sets a precedent: it allows the opposition to potentially seize control over matters of taxation that should be reserved to the Chancellor alone through the budget. It just goes to show - Labour are hungry for power, so much so they'll try and take it away from the government, consequences be damned.
A.W. Dayton Highland
Secretary of State for Education and Future Skills
Member of Parliament for Ayr (1992 - present)
My party's line is to reject this bill. Regrettably, my principles do not allow me to vote with my party.

In the end, I simply do not believe that the government should penalize hard-working people by levying and increasing VAT on utilities. This is especially so as the application of high levels of tax on essential services hits the most vulnerable people in our society the hardest. This includes many of the elderly who fought to defend freedom in this country. They deserve better.

Much has been made of the fact that this bill takes power away from the Chancellor. There is some merit in that argument. However, that concern has to be put to one side when the impact of the expansion of VAT would be to take actual power away from poor people because it becomes too expensive to afford.
Mrs. Margo Leadbetter
Home Secretary and Secretary of State for DEFRA
Conservative MP for Surbiton
Outside the gentlemen's clubs and Parliamentary tearooms the Tories have gotten all too accustomed to living in their own bubble. In places such as my constituency, people don't care about Parliamentary procedures and what powers the executive can and cannot have. Thanks to the Tories' mismanagement of the economy, they - especially the poorest and the pensioners - are battling just for survival. And the Tories are making that worse by taxing them.

Labour's bill attempts to remedy this. It is the right thing to do and I thank principled Conservatives who support it, proving they believe it when they say they're for low taxes for all, not just low taxes for the wealthy. But the government does not have that sense of principle and has completely misplaced priorities. It's more focused on how much power it can keep for itself rather than how it can help struggling working people and pensioners by cutting their taxes. 
Labour - Liverpool Riverside.
Shadow Chancellor
The Tories' opposition to this common-sense tax cut that would benefit working people and pensioners makes one thing clear: If you support lower taxes for working and middle class families, you can't support the Tory party. Their position is simply indefensible, and I applaud the brave few who have stood up to the party "leadership" and their misguided principles. Voters should take note for the next election which party has stood with them and which party has stood against them. In the meantime, the Labour party will continue its fight against this rudderless Government's policies that hurt this Kingdom.
Conservatives are the party of the common man. The party of decency and hard work. Our budget is one of those beautiful gems that you find when you are diving for pearls off the coast of Madagascar. Once you open it up you begin to see its inner beauty and most importantly how it will improve the daily lives of millions. Labour can talk in beautiful circles but who has been governing and improving the lives of millions for the last 15 wonderful years? Conservatives. Huzzah Britain for Queen and Country we serve.
Defence, Energy, Trade Secretary 1994-
 Westminster North
If Mr. Coburg would stay on topic it would be a great relief to not only us, but probably to everyone as well. We know that he loves to tout the last 15 years, but at the end of the day his party lied to the British people and extended VAT when they said they wouldn't. It is a tax on the very common man for whom he says he represents. if that's the case he and the government would be wise to get off their backs. Instead, it is that party who has punished them. Their lines about tax relief aren't huzzah but humbug

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