‘That’s Very Disrespectful’: Victoria Derbyshire Roasts Tory Minister Over ‘Misleading’ Tax Claims

A Tory minister was roasted by Victoria Derbyshire over her claims that Labour will hike taxes by £2,000 if they win the election.

The Newsnight presenter condemned the “misleading” way the Conservatives came up with the total.

Rishi Sunak repeatedly claimed during last night’s TV debate with Keir Starmer that “independent Treasury civil servants” had made the calculation based on Labour’s spending plans.

But the Treasury themselves have insisted that “any interpretations and assumptions are made and set by ministers and special advisers, ensuring the role of officials is limited to providing factual information”.

Appearing alongside Labour’s Liz Kendall after the debate, energy and net zero secretary Claire Coutinho was asked by Derbyshire where the £2,000 figure had come from.

She eplied: “This is a figure which has come up by Treasury officials, so those are independent, impartial civil servants and what they’ve done is very simple.

“They’ve added up the costs of the policies that the Labour Party have said that they want to put in place in the next parliament, and the figure that that comes out with is an extra £2,000 worth of taxes for working families.”

Liz Kendall then said: “Victoria, you put rubbish in, you get rubbish out, and that’s what this is.”

Coutinho replied: “That’s independent civil servants in the Treasury.”

But Derbyshire then said: “I’m going to pull you up on that – they’re not independent, they’re not impartial.

“The assumptions on which the calculations are based have been made by Tory special advisers. They’re political appointees and that is misleading to voters and therefore very disrespectful.”

During last night’s debate, Starmer dismissed the Tory claims as “absolute garbage”.

However, the figure was shared widely on the Conservatives’ social media channels and has received widespread coverage in this morning’s newspapers.

Labour’s Jon Ashworth told Sky News: “This issue that Rishi Sunak raised about tax, it is a lie, an absolute lie.

“Keir Starmer said it is absolute garbage, it is. Rishi Sunak had to, out of desperation, collapse into lying in that debate.”

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