‘Scrap income tax!’ suggests Norfolk MP in jibe at Brexit deal
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018
A conservative Norfolk MP called on the government to scrap income tax after claiming it was originally a temporary measure while mocking Theresa May's Brexit deal.
Richard Bacon, who represents the South Norfolk constituency, compared the tax to the so-called Northern Irish 'backstop' in the European Union withdrawal deal struck by the prime minister with the EU whereby Northern Ireland could be under different rules to the rest of the UK if a trade deal is not struck.
Making the claim during Treasury questions in the House of Commons, Mr Bacon said: 'Income tax was supposed to be a temporary measure.
'Can the chancellor update on his plans finally to get rid of this tax or will it, like the backstop, be with us for the next 200 years?'
Income tax was introduced in 1799 by the then prime minister William Pitt the Younger as way to cover the cost of the Napoleonic War and it was the first tax to be levied directly on people's earnings.
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Philip Hammond, the chancellor of the exchequer said he had no plans to abolish income tax and likened it to the Kingdom of Belgium.
He said he was told the Kingdom was originally intended to be 'a temporary construct - and that seems still to be with us'.
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Mr Hammond added: 'The world has moved on since the Napoleonic Wars, as he may or may not celebrate, and I have to tell him the Government has no plans to abolish income tax.'
Earlier in the same debate, Elizabeth Truss, the conservative MP for South West Norfolk, was challenged on reports millenials, those born after 1985 and before 1995, earn less than their parents at the same age.
Anneliese Dodds, MP for Oxford East, claimed the difference was 'unprecedented' and due to an increase in low paid, less secure jobs and less job mobility.
She added: 'Why is her government listening only to the ERG and not to the voice of business when it says we need to have a permanent customs union?'
Mrs Truss pointed to government figures real pay grew by 0.8pc and said 'we are seeing more and more young people getting into work.'