GMB: George Osborne reflects on his time as Chancellor
George Osborne issued a passionate defence of his time as Chancellor this morning, under scrutiny from Susanna Reid.
Mr Osborne admitted that he and David Cameron probably didn’t get “everything right”, but argued their “clear plan” helped them navigate the most severe economic crash of their lives.
He said: “Those countries that had a clear plan, like Britain at the time under the David Cameron Government, did do better.
“We recovered, the economy grew, people were in work. More jobs were created under the Cameron Government than any British Government in history.”
Mr Osborne, now the chairman of the British Museum, criticised Labour and his other opponents, saying “you can’t say ‘I’m going to cut spending, I’m going to make sure the state doesn’t borrow too much’, and then say ‘I’m not going to touch benefits, I’m not going to touch public services’, you can’t do it!”
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Ms Reid pressed Mr Osborne about whether he worried the gap between the rich and the poor had become bigger during his time in office.
The former Chancellor argued that during his time some of the most controversial decisions he took were precisely those that most directly impacted the wealthiest.
He cited making child benefit means tested, taking it away from the top 50 percent of the country.
He also said increasing university tuition fees to £9000, similarly, created “a big riot” even though those who go to university get much better jobs.
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George Osborne cited the Liz Truss anniversary, where a budget didn’t add up and abandoned political reality.
He said their plan was an “economic disaster” and proved the hard reality of economics.
Mr Osborne is set to host a new political podcast with his former arch rival Ed Balls, who now presents Good Morning Britain alongside Susanna Reid.
‘Political Currency’, produced by the same company behind The News Agents, will see the frenemies discuss how major economic decisions are made and how they affect people’s lives.
Mr Osborne said: “We were the insiders, and now we have the perspective of the outsiders.
“We’re going to take people behind the closed doors, into the rooms where the decisions are made. We’ll explain how the politics follows the economics, and expose how the powerful become powerless when faced with economic forces they can’t control.”
This morning Ed Balls said the only things that last in society are those things which become consensus, such as Bank of England independence and the national minimum wage.
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