Liz Truss Could Scrap Pensions Triple Lock To Cut Public Spending
Liz Truss could scrap the pensions triple lock as part of efforts to reduce government spending, the Prime Minister's spokesperson has suggested.
Truss vowed to keep the triple lock in place during the contest to succeed Boris Johnson as Conservative party leader and prime minister.
The triple lock guarantees that state pensions are uprated in line with whatever is highest out of inflation, wages and 2.5 per cent. This year it is expected to be inflation, which is currently at around 10 per cent.
Keeping the promise is seen as particularly important to the Tory party's electoral prospects as elderly people are more likely to vote for the Conservatives.
Asked on Tuesday whether Truss would stick to that pledge, however, her spoksperson said she was not making any commitments on "individual policy areas at this point".
"The Prime Minister is aware of the commitments made in this area and indeed to how many vulnerable pensioners there are," they said.
"The decision she has taken is to prioritise economic stability and it is her view and the Chancellor's view that at this point, it is not right to start pre-empting a collective piece of work which needs to be cared about across government on all spending."
Jeremy Hunt, who Truss appointed to replace Kwasi Kwarteng as her Chancellor last week amid economic turmoil, hinted on Monday that the triple lock could be affected by spending cuts.
"I’m very aware of how many vulnerable pensioners there are and the importance of the triple lock," he told MPs yesterday.
"I’m not making any commitments on any individual policy areas, but every decision we take will be taken through the prism of what matters most to the most vulnerable."
The Prime Minister's spokesperson did say, however, that Truss "remains committed" to increase defending spending to three per cent by 2030.
This morning Armed Forces Minister James Heappey threatened to resign if the Prime Minister did not stick to that promise.
Government departments will work in the next two weeks to find ways of cutting public spending, the Prime Minister's spokesperson said this morning.
Hunt has overhauled Truss's "mini-Budget" since over from Kwarteng a few days ago, reversing most of the tax cuts she set out last month in a bid to restore economic stability.
Truss and Kwarteng's announcement last month that they planned to fund sweeping tax cuts through borrowing worth tens of billions of pounds was followed by chaos in the markets, with the pound falling to its lowest ever level against the dollar and soaring interest rates.
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