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Page last updated at 07:44 GMT, Wednesday, 7 October 2009 08:44 UK

Osborne promises 'progressive reform'

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The shadow chancellor, George Osborne has defended his proposals to reduce the national debt.

Speaking on the programme he said that "the country has run out of money" and that there was a £90bn gap in the public finances. He added that his proposals would save £7bn a year, or £23bn over the lifetime of a parliament.

In addition, Mr Osborne said that "tens of billions" could be saved through other measures, including the restructuring of government departments.

He said that protecting public service jobs was "absolutely a priority", adding that the public now had a clear choice between "progressive reform" from the Conservatives or Labour's "frontline cuts"

Rejecting the assertion that the measures he has announced are a gamble, Mr Osborne said that "whoever wins the election is going to have to take these choices". If any party denied that, they would be lying, he added.

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