Page last updated at 11:42 GMT, Thursday, 23 April 2009 12:42 UK

Press verdict on Darling's Budget

Chancellor Alistair Darling
Chancellor Alistair Darling woke up to some terrible reviews

"Shock" is the word that probably best sums up the reaction in the City to yesterday's Budget. Shock and disbelief. Shock that the Chancellor could have got his sums so spectacularly wrong

Sean O'Grady in the Independent isn't convinced Darling has dealt with the mounting national debt.

In true Mr Bean fashion, yesterday's Budget saved the economies of Switzerland, Luxembourg, Jersey, Hong Kong and other low-tax jurisdictions (polite society no longer describes them as tax havens)

The introduction of a 50% top rate of tax for people earning more than £150,000 a year will drive high earners out of the UK, Anatole Kaletsky claims in the Times.

The chancellor deserves credit for boldly striving to create a fairer tax system, ensuring those with the deepest pockets pay more tax to protect services and help the jobless and pensioners.

The higher tax brought in by 'Robin Good' is welcomed by The Mirror


If, yesterday, we were hoping for some wartime spirit, what we got instead was a declaration of class war.

The new tax will divide the country predicts The Daily Telegraph


The battle lines for next year's election are now clearer. Labour is back to its high-tax, high-spending roots. The Tories insist they can run the country better AND save money. The choice will be yours. Let's hope Britain isn't bankrupt by the time you have to make it.

This Budget will lead to Labour losing the next election the Sun leader article predicts


He has loyally owned the crisis as his own, and his considered calmness is becoming a considerable economic and political asset. Brown and the Labour party are lucky in this chancellor.

Will Hutton in the Guardian seems to be the only columnist willing to fight Alistair Darling's corner.


Only Alistair Darling, most emollient of politicians, could manage to make this Budget boring.

Alistair Darling's delivery of the speech didn't inspire Martin Wolf writing for the Financial Times.


Imagine yourself on the surgeon's slab, just pushed towards oblivion by a soft-palmed anaesthetist. That is what it is like to endure a 40-minute Budget speech by Snoozer Darling. His eyebrows had fallen asleep on his face, or so it seemed. And who could blame them?

Daily Mail sketch writer Quentin Letts agreed with the Financial Times.



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