'What Happened To That Jeremy Hunt?': Sophy Ridge Nails Chancellor Over Tax Cut Pledge

Jeremy Hunt's previous words have come back to haunt him.
Jeremy Hunt's previous words have come back to haunt him.

Jeremy Hunt's previous words have come back to haunt him.

Jeremy Hunt was left squirming over his pledge to slash corporoation tax as he prepares to put it up in next week’s Budget.

The chancellor said he wanted to bring the rate companies pay on their profits down to 15p in the pound when he was running to be Tory leader last summer.

But on Wednesday, Hunt will confirm that it will actually rise from 19p to 25p from next month, despite protests from Tory MPs.

Appearing on Sophy Ridge on Sunday on Sky News this morning, Hunt was shown a graphic of his comments last July.

He said at the time: “I’m also someone who doesn’t just think we shouldn’t just stop the corporation tax rises, I think that we should cut them so that they are the lowest in Europe and north America. I think we should cut it to 15%.”

Ridge said: “Are you really going to be the chancellor who puts it up to 25%? What happened to that Jeremy Hunt?”

Hunt replied: “It’s the same Jeremy Hunt that’s with you now, and I still want to have the most competitive business taxes anywhere in the world.

“I am a Conservative who believes in a low tax economy. I’m incredibly proud of the fact that under successive Conservative governments, we’ve reduced taxes so that for the first time in our history you can earn a thousand pounds a month without paying a penny of tax or National Insurance.”

He added: “But I also have to be responsible with public finances. We’re not going to do what the last Labour government did and run out of money.

“Businesses need the stability that comes from being responsible, so we will get there gradually - but get there we will.”

Ridge pointed out that the overall tax burden in the UK was set to be the highest it’s been since the 1960s.

She said: “You were a radical on tax when you ran for the leadership, when you were chair of the health select committee you wanted to transform the NHS.

“Now it feels a bit like you’re running the economy as if you’re Jeremy from accounts.”

Hunt replied: “I think you have to wait and see what I say on Wednesday.

“But Jeremy the chancellor will be responsible with public finances - I make absolutely no apology for that.”