David Cameron has been warned two weeks ago against abandoning Britain’s middle class after his chancellor recommended a rise in the minimum wage to help low-paid workers.
Senior backbenchers and government advisors criticised the decision to call for a significant rise in the minimum wage as a way to compensate low-income workers for the economic crisis.
George Osborne called for the rise in wages as part of a Conservative plan to appeal to voters in marginal constituencies who will decide the outcome of the next general election. Prices have been rising faster than wages, which in fact means that the real value of the minimum wage has been falling since 2008.
Dominic Raab, the MP for Esher & Walton, said: ‘It’s vital to support the lowest paid but it’s debatable whether raising the minimum wage will do that effectively unless it’s hiked so much that it threatens unemployment. At the same time, we should be looking to ease the squeeze on the middle classes, who have seen their tax burden steadily rising.’ He added: ‘Rather than borrowing Labour lipstick to raise the minimum wage, we should have the courage of our convictions and find savings for tax cuts that help the hard-up while strengthening the recovery.’
In Britain, the middle classes are the lifeblood of the nation. The burden of taxation is killing their initiative and leaving them worse off than they have ever been. This government has done nothing to ease their constant struggle to make both ends meet in their daily life. They pay the same rate of taxation as the mega-rich, who are becoming richer every year. For them, it’s bonanza time – hence their reason for flocking to live in London – for in my view the middle classes are now subsidising the mega-rich’s cushy and luxurious lifestyle.
The Tories are unlikely to win the next general election unless they buck up their ideas and give a break to those who contribute most to keep the economy vibrant. Without the immense effort of the middle classes this country will suffer a drought of ideas and the entrepreneurial spirit that keeps us in the forefront of nations with a financial clout to reckon with. The Tories have a golden opportunity to reform and to pursue policies that are fair and productive, if they dream of ever forming a government without the constraints of another coalition administration.
The ball is truly in their court. If they fail they will find themselves in the political wilderness for generations to come.