Should there be higher rates for people in the South?
I’ve just had this email from HenryG – our regular Labour commenter from the North East.
He writes: ” CLP activists are up in arms at this idea of Ed Miliband’s to pay people South more in tax credits that those in the North. It was flagged up in my local paper today and one of our MPs has jumped on it.
This is a dubious idea at the best of times, but to float this during a leadership contest shows a serious error of judgement. The votes of Labour members, MPs and trade unionists in the North could be decisive in a close race and Ed doesn’t want to be mucking about with stuff like this that risks alienating supporters. He will probably still get my vote but I am wavering a little.
I don’t think Andy Burnham, Ed Balls or David Miliband would have made such an unforced error. It just smacks of inexperience and this will nag away at me until I get my ballot paper through. The fact is that Ed Miliband is in a great position but simply can’t afford too many more of these over the next month.”
Henry has been one of the strongest backers of EdM in this campaign.
UPDATE – RESPONSE FROM ED MILIBAND
Ed has put out this Twitter –
On hol, but saw @MikeSmithsonPB blog. To avoid doubt, NorthernEcho misunderstood me on tax credits. Not in favour of regional rates at all.
This was followed by this one:
…but I’d like to see higher rates nationally to help those who didn’t benefit from minimum wage, particularly in south where fewer have.