Oct 27th, 2015
Tax Credits Breakthrough
By Becca McCarthy
It was a close run thing. But tonight, despite all George Osborne’s bullying tactics, the House of Lords voted to force delays to the government’s tax credit cuts. And in response a “slightly shaky-looking” Osborne accepted he had to go back to the drawing board.
This doesn’t mean we’ve won – yet. There’s a lot more to do. But it does mean we are starting to win. George Osborne’s attacks on low-paid, working families are now on the rocks. These delays give us more time to build the pressure and get the cuts to tax credits dropped altogether.
38 Degrees members have done so much to get to this stage:
- 250,000 of us signed the petition asking the Lords to do the right thing. Annee, a 38 Degrees member affected by the cuts, and her granddaughter Charlotte, carried the petition into Parliament on behalf of all of us.
- Donations from 38 Degrees members paid for the opinion poll, splashed across front pages of newspapers today, showing that six in 10 British citizens want tax credit cuts stopped – a key argument used in tonight’s debate in Parliament.
- We’ve built powerful local petitions to every single MP in the UK – backed up by personal messages, tweets, and phone calls telling them to do all they can to reverse these unfair plans.
- Donations from 38 Degrees members have paid for thousands and thousands of leaflets against the tax credit cuts, delivered to voters in the constituencies of wavering Conservative MPs.
- Powerful testimonies from 38 Degrees members who will be hit personally by the cuts have made headlines in local newspapers across the country. (See also here and here)
We’re stopping George Osborne getting his own way. Tonight’s breakthrough shows that when hundreds of thousands of us come together, we can be a match for even the most powerful and determined of politicians.
Here’s how our campaign’s been seen by other influential people:
“Most of the questions George Osborne was facing this evening were from new MPs worried about a big 38 Degrees campaign on tax credits.”
“The petition with 270,000 signatures was very important in the debate. Peers are of course unelected. You enabled us to say we are representing the British people who are shocked and fearful about the cuts ahead. Thank you so much”
And here’s how some 38 Degrees members reacted last night:
“I’m just so relieved, as a single parent family this means so much. Thank you to everyone for not just giving up.” Jayne
“A huge THANK YOU to everyone who helped make this first step a success by delaying the proposed Tax Credits cuts!! Let’s keep the pressure on so they continue to do the right thing! Well done everyone!” Maureen
“Phenomenal news. A thousand congratulations to everyone who has fought for this..it proves that we can achieve things with our rage!” David
There’s so much more to do together, to truly secure a more equal Britain where everyone gets a fair chance. Last night’s breakthrough can give us all the hope and confidence to believe that when we get involved, we can make a difference.