Majority think May is dishonest about ‘Brexit dividend’ NHS boost
Polling by Sky News has found that the public distrust Theresa May’s promise of a ‘Brexit Dividend’ funding the NHS by almost two to one.
The figures, which were released yesterday, found that just over half of all respondents thought that the promise was either ‘fairly dishonest’ (26 per cent) or ‘fairly dishonest’ (28 per cent.)
Even worse for the Tories, a majority of those holding an opinion also didn’t believe there would be any Brexit dividend whatsoever, with 58 per cent disagreeing, and 42 per cent believe there would be.
In a speech today, May admitted that tax rises would ‘also’ be needed, and is betting on public sympathy for the NHS to rescue her reputation. On this, she may be right, as 54 per cent of people said they’d back tax rises for ‘people like themselves’ to save the health service.
However, May refused to give details on which taxes would be going up. The Institute for Fiscal Studies has predicted that tax rises of at least 3 per cent across the board would be needed to raise sufficient money for May’s ‘birthday present’. Labour criticised the funding as insufficient and said that ordinary people shouldn’t have to bear the brunt of Tory austerity. Shadow Health Secretary John Ashworth said:
“The money announced today by the Prime Minister is not enough to save our NHS after eight years of Conservative austerity.
“Although she confirmed the current situation is not sustainable, today’s figures represent little more than a standstill in funding, according to experts.
“People are waiting longer and in pain because of Tory cuts to the NHS. The Prime Minister couldn’t say today when this will improve and waiting lists will come down.
“She also confirmed that social care, capital spending and public health will not see any increase as a result of today’s announcement.
“If the Conservatives do manage to publish the detail of their insufficient 3.4% increase, then Labour’s fully costed plans to raise taxes for the top 5% and big business will top up NHS spending growth to around the 5% which is needed.”