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UK News: Keir Starmer says he will reverse tax cut for top earners if he wins next election

Truss vows ‘decade of dynamism’ in hint at more tax cuts

  Truss vows ‘decade of dynamism’ in hint at more tax cuts The Prime Minister and Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng defended their controversial raft of tax cuts amid accusations they mainly benefit the rich.Using more than £70 billion of increased borrowing, Mr Kwarteng announced the biggest programme of tax cuts for 50 years, including abolishing the top rate of income tax for the highest earners.

Labour will reverse the cut in the higher rate of income tax if it wins power at the next election, Sir Keir Starmer has said.

Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner after her speech © Reuters Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner after her speech

Around 660,000 of the highest earners on more than £150,000 will benefit from the scrapping of the 45p rate, getting back on average £10,000 a year.

  Keir Starmer says he will reverse tax cut for top earners if he wins next election © Other

Asked if Labour would reintroduce the 45% rate, Sir Keir told the BBC's Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg programme: "Yes".

Politics hub: 'Battle lines' drawn with mini-budget - live updates

He said: "I do not think that the choice to have tax cuts for those that are earning hundreds of thousands of pounds is the right choice when our economy is struggling the way it is, working people are struggling in the way they are... that is the wrong choice.

Starmer says he supports right to strike as cost of living mounts

  Starmer says he supports right to strike as cost of living mounts The Labour leader said he can ‘quite understand’ how people are driven to take industrial action as they struggle to pay their bills. He told the BBC’s Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg programme the “single most important thing” he can do for those striking is to “usher in a Labour government”.He has banned frontbenchers from joining picket lines, with Sam Tarry sacked as shadow transport minister in July for giving unauthorised media interviews from an RMT demonstration.Sir Keir said it is “reasonable” to expect that wages are set that take account of the mounting cost of living.

"I would reverse the decision that they made on Friday."

However, he said he supports the government cutting the basic rate to 19p.

"I've long made the argument that we should reduce the tax burden on working people," he said.

"That's why we opposed the national insurance increase earlier this year, which of course the government is now reversing."

The measures were announced in Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng's mini-budget on Friday.

Labour had faced pressure to say if it would reverse the cuts after tearing into the policy announcement, with shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves calling Mr Kwarteng's growth plan "an admission of 12 years of economic failure under successive Conservative governments".

Labour has 'patriotism problem' as Brexiteer says Starmer right to sing national anthem

  Labour has 'patriotism problem' as Brexiteer says Starmer right to sing national anthem A minute's silence in memory of Queen Elizabeth II was observed at the start of Labour's conference on Sunday before a rendition of God Save The King was sung.A Brexiteer has defended Sir Keir Starmer's decision for Labour members to sing the national anthem at their conference, saying the wider party has a problem with patriotism. Many people were seen singing the national anthem with applause heard once the rendition concluded at the conference hall in Liverpool. The Labour leader earlier paid tribute to the late Queen, telling members it still felt impossible to imagine a Britain without her.

Speaking to Sophy Ridge on Sky News earlier this morning, Ed Miliband, the shadow secretary for climate change, all but confirmed the reversal when he said Labour would be "consistent in our election manifesto with our opposition to the 45p tax cut".

He said: "Keir Starmer and Rachel Reeves set out tax policy and Keir will be saying more about this quite shortly.

"We think it's the wrong thing to do for the country."

However Andy Burnham, the Labour mayor of Greater Manchester, went a step further and said Labour should reverse the basic rate income tax cut as well as the cut for top earners.

He told Sophy Ridge that now is "not the time" for tax cuts and the billions being spent on them should be used to offer targeted support for the most vulnerable.

He called the Conservative's mini-budget a "flagrant act of vandalism on the social cohesion of this country".

Read more:

The key mini-budget announcements

Labour surge to biggest poll lead in 21 years ahead of key Starmer speech

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"You have a budget that splurges billions on the wealthiest people in the country and actually doesn't do anything meaningful to get people through the autumn and the winter... I can barely believe it," he said.

"The government has drawn battle lines with working people - they've told us which side they're on."

Mr Burnham said he believed Labour has a realistic chance of making it to Downing Street in the next two years, as he called for his party to unite and set out an alternative plan that people can support.

That optimism was echoed by Sir Keir in his BBC interview. Sir Keir said he had picked Labour "up off the canvas" after the 2019 general election hammering which saw the Tories under Boris Johnson win an 80-seat majority.

He said the hope of a Labour government has now turned into a belief and that switch "is worth its weight in gold".

The interview came as Labour members gather in Liverpool for the annual party conference.

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'The cavalry is coming': Shadow minister says Labour 'ready to govern'

  'The cavalry is coming': Shadow minister says Labour 'ready to govern' Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting said "the cavalry is coming with Labour" as he sought to portray the party as a government in waiting. © Sky News Screen Grab Mr Streeting was speaking with Sky News' Kay Burley ahead of Sir Keir Starmer's keynote speech at the Labour conference in Liverpool. © Reuters He said Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng's mini-budget last Friday had left the Opposition with their "jaws hitting the floor" - accusing him of "frightening the markets" after the pound plummeted and some mortgage lenders began withdrawing their offers from sale.

People 'desperate for change'

Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner gave the first big speech of the day, pledging that an incoming Labour government would "oversee the biggest wave of insourcing for a generation".

She said: "The Tories have become too dependent on handing away our public services on the cheap, and now we are paying the price.

"Today I can announce that before any service is contracted out, public bodies must show that the work could not be better done in-house".

She said the country is "at a crossroads" and people are "desperate for change".

"At this moment, what do the Conservatives offer? Lining the pockets of oil and gas executives. Enriching bankers while families are starving," she said.

In the first announcements of the conference, Sir Keir will today set out plans to make the UK a world-leading clean energy superpower by 2030 as an urgent priority of a future Labour government and to bolster neighbourhood policing.

Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting will also promise to bring back the family doctor so more patients see the same GP each appointment.

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