Boris Johnson defends National Insurance levy in Parliament
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Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed plans for a new “health and social care levy” as he desperately looks to address a social care crisis that has been ignored by successive governments. Millions of Britons and employers will now have to pay an additional 1.25 percent in National Insurance each year. For example, someone earning £24,100 a year will be forced to pay an extra £180 to cover the NI hike, while someone taking home £67,100 will pay an extra £715.
The extra money will also contribute towards tackling an ever growing NHS waiting list caused by the Covid pandemic.
In the weeks leading up to the crunch general election in 2019, the Tory manifesto document promised: “We will not raise the rate of income tax, VAT or national insurance.”
Mr Johnson was also facing a rebellion from some of his own Conservative ministers, but he will be equally concerned about the huge backlash he has already received from Tory voters following his announcement.
Several have threatened to turn their back on Mr Johnson and the Tories at the next general election, which is set to take place in 2024.
Boris Johnson has received a furious backlash over his broken manifesto pledge (Image: GETTY)
Reacting to the initial story from Express.co.uk, one person raged: “As a lifelong Conservative voter, I would just like to say that Boris is a bare-faced liar and will not be getting my vote next time around!”
A second reader fumed: “We need a new leader.
“Had he sorted the BBC tax and the House of Lords first, I might have gone along with him.”
Another person said: “This will come back to bite them at the next election.”
The Prime Minister confirmed the tax plans to ministers in the House of Commons (Image: HOUSE OF COMMONS / PA)
While a fourth reader added: “Now the £100billion+ completely wasted on the HS2 vanity project comes into sharp focus.
“There WAS enough money, but you SQUANDERED it on a new train set we didn’t need.”
Speaking in the House of Commons on Tuesday, Mr Johnson conceded he was going back on his election manifesto pledge, insisting it is “not something I do lightly”.
He said: “No Conservative Government ever wants to raise taxes and I will be honest with the House, yes, I accept that this breaks a manifesto commitment, which is not something I do lightly.
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Boris Johnson defended the decision to increase National Insurance payments (Image: HOUSE OF COMMONS / PA)
Si Keir Starmer launched a furious attack against the Tories (Image: HOUSE OF COMMONS / PA)
“But a global pandemic was in no-one’s manifesto and I think the people of this country understand that in their bones and they can see the enormous steps this Government and the Treasury have taken.
“After all the extraordinary actions that have been taken to protect lives and livelihoods over the last 18 months, this is the right, the reasonable and the fair approach.”
In addition, a new cap of £86,000 on lifetime care costs will come into effect from October 2023 that will protect people from the “catastrophic fear of losing everything”.
The Tory Government has promised to all of the cost of care for those with assets under £20,000, and pay towards the cost of care for those with assets between £20,000 and £100,000.
The UK’s national debt hit a staggering £2.2trillion in May (Image: EXPRESS)
Sir Keir Starmer also launched a blistering attack against the Tory plans, and told ministers in the Commons: “This is a tax that breaks the promise the Prime Minister made at the last election, a promise that they all made at the last election, every single one of them.
“A tax rise on young people, supermarket workers and nurses, a tax rise that means a landlord renting out dozens of properties won’t pay a penny more but the tenants working in full-time jobs would, a tax rise that places another burden on business just as they are trying to get back on their feet.
“Read my lips: the Tories can never again claim to be the party of low tax.”