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Thursday, 19 November 2009

Facts, David Cameron, and poverty

What have all these things got in common?
Nothing.
"The verdict

Cameron's claim on poverty just doesn't wash - the number of people in general, and particularly children and pensioners, in poverty have reduced since Labour came to power, although progress seems to have stalled in recent years.

There's also a different definition of "severe" poverty favoured by the Tories, which suggests things have got worse under Labour - but there are so many uncertainties about these figures they merit a separate FactCheck entirely (which we've done, here: FactCheck - more in severe poverty?).

Inequality has got slightly worse under Labour, particularly in recent years, much of it made up of increased riches for the very richest, and a poorer deal for the very poorest.

This increase in inequality is nothing like that which happened under Margaret Thatcher, though it's debatable how much this ice this cuts in the 21st century.

It's worth noting too that Labour's tax and benefit reforms have been redistributive (Robin Hood-like). Had they kept the same system they inherited, there would be far more people in poverty today. "


Factcheck is such a great resource, there really needs to be much more use made of it.

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