UKIP economic spokesman Patrick O’Flynn today criticised George Osborne for resorting to “smoke and mirror politics” to pretend Britain’s budget deficit was under control.
Mr O’Flynn said: “The one thing we learned today is that the current year’s deficit is going to come in at more than £90bn. That is a disgrace and very far away from what Mr Osborne promised back in 2010.
“It is also frankly foolish for the Chancellor to claim that he has halved the deficit based on an optimistic forecast about what might happen to it in the next financial year 2015-16.
“Mr Osborne should by now have learned the lesson that trust can be easily lost but is much harder to regain.
“The brutal truth is that the Government has comprehensively failed in its central mission to wipe out the deficit.
“In my view the most important cause of its failure is that it has lacked the appetite to restrain spending on politically correct expenditure programmes which are designed to detoxify the public image of the Conservative Party.
“So huge and unaffordable expenditures are continuing in the areas of foreign aid, alternative energy, an excessive per capita spending settlement for Scotland and of course our massive net EU contribution.
“Mr Osborne should spend less time fretting about whether he and his party are perceived as nasty as most sensible people know it is both very easy and morally reprehensible to be generous with other people’s money.
“Instead when it comes to getting rid of the deficit by making radical savings he should, to coin a phrase, Just Do It.”
Mr O’Flynn welcomed the end of “slab” taxation on stamp duty for house purchases and plans to finally get to grips with aggressive tax avoidance by giant multinational corporations.
“I will be interested to see the detail of Mr Osborne’s proposed tax on diverted profits as there is always a danger of targeted corporations managing to devise new arrangements to avoid it. But fair play to him for taking the issue seriously, even if this has come very late in the day.
“The worst aspect of Mr Osborne’s addiction to spin rather than action when it comes to cutting the deficit is it will overshadow those areas of economic performance which are going better, such as job creation and the uptick in overall economic growth.”