Leeds reacts to Kwasi Kwarteng's U-turn on abolition of 45p tax rate for higher earners

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The Government has faced online criticism over the U-turn on the abolition of the 45p tax rate for high earners.

As part of his mini-budget, chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng announced the 45p rate for people earning more than £150,000 per year would be scrapped.

However, just 10 days on from the announcement, he has labelled the proposals a “distraction” and announced the abolition will not be going ahead.

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He told the BBC the proposals were "drowning out a strong package” which included cuts to the basic rate of income and corporation tax.

The scrapping of the 45p tax rate will no longer go ahead. Image: Leon Neal/Getty ImagesThe scrapping of the 45p tax rate will no longer go ahead. Image: Leon Neal/Getty Images
The scrapping of the 45p tax rate will no longer go ahead. Image: Leon Neal/Getty Images

As per the BBC, Mr Kwarteng: "We've listened to people. And yeah, there is humility and contrition in that. And I'm happy to own it."

He also said he had “the humility to say look, we got it wrong and we are not going to proceed with the abolition of the rate”.

Yorkshire Evening Post readers have made their feelings on the U-turn clear on social media and below are a selection of comments made.

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Ian Locker said: “While the rest of us suffer, it was the wrong time to give a tax cut to a few then announce borrowing to go up. It’s the lower tax band that should be lifted, I still pay tax on my meagre pension.”

Paul Tee said: “Not fit for purpose.”

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Kwasi Kwarteng U-turns on abolition of 45p tax rate mini-budget announcement cal...

Aileen Larsen: "Seriously, to anyone planning to vote Conservative at the next election? Why? Just why?”

John Eveleigh said: ”What a shambles!”

Hugh Mitchell said: “Too late, at least we all know where you stand.”

Although there was criticism, Tom O’Brien defended the decision to make the U-turn and said the chancellor “can’t win”.

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He said: “Country kicks off and complains, he reverses the decision. Country says he is unfit for office, [the] lad [Mr Kwarteng] can’t win.”

Linda Kenna said: “[I] wish more MPs had the ability to say ‘sorry we got it wrong!’”

Mr Kwarteng’s chancellorship began last month after Liz Truss won the race to become Boris Johnson’s successor as the leader of the Conservative Party and prime minister.

He has been fiercely criticised by several MPs from various parties and Liberal Democrats leader Sir Ed Davey has called on him to resign.

However, Mr Kwarteng has insisted he has not considered doing so and has defended the decision to perform the U-turn.