Colleagues claim Philip Hammond did not tell them his Budget plans would break a Conservative manifesto promise
A furious row over who was to blame for the Budget “shambles” erupted last night after it emerged that the Cabinet was never briefed that the Tory manifesto was being breached.
Philip Hammond’s hour-long briefing to Cabinet colleagues failed to mention that a tax rise on the self-employed clashed with a Tory election promise, it can be revealed.
Cabinet sources have blamed the subsequent damaging headlines on the Treasury’s failure to detect the political danger and warn ministers. However, Treasury figures have pointed the finger at No ۱۰ and its demand for spending to protect Theresa May’s “just about managing” families.
“If No ۱۰ has got all these projects to spend money here, there and everywhere then you have to raise it from somewhere,” a Treasury source said.
The row follows the most damaging fallout from a Budget in half a decade with Mrs May facing her biggest backbench rebellion yet.
Wednesday’s announcement that self-employed workers would face an increase in National Insurance contributions was designed to bring tax rules for the growing number of entrepreneurs closer in line with people employed by companies.
However, a row erupted because the Tory’s 2015 manifesto promised “we will not raise VAT, National Insurance contributions or Income Tax”.