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Missed opportunity knocks on door of a decade of debt

Conservative leader David Cameron says the Budget was “a missed opportunity” and called the Government’s economic model “fundamentally bust” huge level of borrowing.

Speaking after the Budget in the House of Commons on Wednesday afternoon, Cameron said that in the next two years this Government would be borrowing more than all the Governments since the Bank of England was created over 300 years ago.

He said: “This Prime Minister has certainly got himself in the history books. He has written a whole chapter in red ink – Labour’s decade of debt.”

He also questioned why Chancellor Alistair Darling had not announced any specific measures to overhaul the banking regulatory system.

He said: “Where was the plan to regulate the banks and regulate credit properly? Isn’t it time to end the tripartite system and restore the Bank of England to its proper place of regulating debt and the economy.”

Cameron asked where was the great fiscal stimulus that the Prime Minister promised before the G20 and said the Government could not afford a proper stimulus because they have run out of money.

The Tory leader said that no other country in the world is in as bad a position as the UK and said that everyone – not just the rich – would have to pay the price for Labour’s failures through the rise in taxes on consumer goods such as alcohol and petrol announced in the Budget. He said: “These are not taxes for the few, they are taxes for the many introduced by this Labour Prime Minister.”

He added: “This Budget was a missed opportunity. We need to move from an economy of borrow and spend to an economy of save and invest.”

Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg also weighed in, calling the Budget a “pick and mix” of recycled announcements from a Government that is “incompetent at actually delivering help”.

Clegg said: “This Budget is a political supermarket sweep of random promises, without even a hint of a plan or any likelihood the promises will be put into practice.”

He also criticised the Chancellor for failing to sort out the UK’s “unfair” tax system.

He said: “Britain’s taxes are too heavy on those who can least afford it. And too easy to avoid for those who know how. The 50p rate will further encourage the very wealthy to avoid tax unless we tackle the unfair loopholes they exploit.”

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