Sajid Javid wanted to slash income tax and stamp duty in his first budget
Sajid Javid would have slashed income tax in the upcoming spring budget had he not resigned as Chancellor, he revealed last night.
Mr Javid, who left government after a disagreement over the sacking of his advisers, has said he wanted to reduce the basic rate of income tax by 2% as part of a radical programme of tax cuts.
The former Chancellor told the Times he wanted the basic rate cut to 15% by 2025, and had also intended to reduce stamp duty.
Mr Javid quit the Government earlier this month after the Prime Minister ordered him to sack his advisers and create a joint team between Number 10 and the Treasury.
In his first interview since resigning, Mr Javid said he would pay for tax cuts by cutting government waste, and urged his successor Rishi Sunak to keep his fiscal rules, which promise to balance the Government’s day-to-day spending by 2030.
He said last night: “I passionately believe that where you can afford it tax cuts are a good thing and now that we have a majority, we should be much more aggressive on the tax cuts for the long term […] and go much further than our manifesto.”
He continued: “The one I worked up was a cut in the basic rate of income tax, the biggest cut in basic rate of income tax in decades. I planned it to go to 18p – 2p off – with an ambition to get to 15p on the pound by the end of the parliament.”
Pushing the Government to keep to his spending rules, he said: “It’s critical to keep to our fiscal rules because some people including at the centre of Government think fiscal rules are the enemy, they are something to be scorned at, to be frightened of.
“Sensible fiscal rules for a good government are your best friend, it gives you an anchor, a base line by which to judge all spending and it forces you to make choices because not everything can be a priority.”
Rishi Sunak is expected to use his March 11 budget to cut pensions tax relief for higher earners, and has refused to rule out an increase in fuel duty.
TRUTH TO POWER
Mr Javid also railed against advisers in Number 10 who wanted to “control the Treasury”, and said Cabinet ministers sent him texts of support after his speech in the Commons earlier this week.
He said: “There are clearly some people at the centre that think it’s better for Number 10 to control the Treasury. I don’t agree with that and that’s why I’m sitting here as a backbencher.”
He continued: “You want a Cabinet minister to be able to feel that they can be candidate with the prime minister on a regular basis about what works and what doesn’t.”
On Wednesday, the former Chancellor gave his first speech in the Commons since resigning, and said that “a Chancellor, like all Cabinet ministers, has to be able to give candid advice to a prime minister so he is speaking truth to power.”
Mr Javid said that Cabinet ministers sent him supportive messages after the speech: “I had text messages from a number of cabinet ministers and ministers saying ‘well done’. One said, ‘Thank you for speaking on behalf of all of us.’"