Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman Vince Cable today signalled his desire
for the party to scrap its commitment to a 50p top rate of income tax.
Risking the wrath of grassroots activists and some senior colleagues, he
suggested that the policy was costing the Lib Dems votes.
The party has set up a Tax Commission to examine its whole approach to the
issue. But Cable told the Lib Dem Conference: ‘I believe our central message
should be fairer taxes not higher taxes.
‘There will be no credibility whatsoever for the party in promising to spend
more than Labour. The only strategy that will make sense is to build on our
pre-election approach of emphasising the need for tough choices.
‘The central point remains that grown-up politics must be rooted in
economics. To be frank many voters still – however mistakenly – associate us
with high taxes and big spending. Our economic credibility hinges on changing
Foreign affairs spokesman and Fife North East MP Sir Menzies Campbell, a
highly paid barrister, has made clear his view that the 50p top tax rate should
stay, saying that he would be more than happy to pay it.