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Labour would keep 19% basic rate but reinstate 45% top rate of income tax, says Keir Starmer – UK politics live

Starmer confirms Labour could keep basic rate income tax cut to 19%, but reinstate 45% top rate

Q: In government would you reinstate the 45% rate of tax?

Yes, says Starmer. He says he would reverse the decision the government took on Friday. He is “absolutely clear” on that.

Q: And would you reverse the basic rate tax cut to 19%?

Starmer says he would not reverse that. He goes on:

I’ve long made the argument that we should reduce the tax burden on working people. That’s why we opposed the national insurance increase earlier this year, which of course the government is now reversing.

Keir Starmer Photograph: Keir Starmer/Keir Starmer on Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg

Key events

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Dodds says next Labour government will match record of last one in advancing equality

Anneliese Dodds is chair of the Labour party but also shadow secretary of state for women and equalities, and in her speech to the conference this morning she focused largely on the latter role. She told delegates:

The last Labour government did more to advance equality than any other in British history. The next will match that record – and we will start with the economy.

We will act to eradicate gender, ethnicity and disability pay gaps.

We will bring in strong family-friendly rights.

We will measure what we do and be accountable for it – equality impact assessing every budget.

And we’ll always – always – treat the British people with dignity and respect …

Respect means equalising the law so that all forms of hate crime are treated as aggravated offences.

Respect means modernising the Gender Recognition Act and upholding the Equality Act, including its provision for single-sex exemptions.

Respect means banning all forms of conversion therapy outright while making sure that doesn’t cover psychological support and treatment. Because unlike the Tories, we will never hide behind strawman arguments to avoid doing what’s right.

Respect means working with disabled people, not against them – ending cruel disability assessments and supporting disabled people to live the lives they want and deserve.

And respect means tackling the epidemic of violence against women and girls – with specialist rape units in every police force area, minimum sentences for rape and stalking, and making misogyny a hate crime.

Anneliese Dodds addressing the Labour conference.
Anneliese Dodds addressing the Labour conference. Photograph: Phil Noble/Reuters

Ken Clarke slams Kwarteng’s mini-budget as like something ‘usually tried in Latin American countries without success’

Ken Clarke, the former chancellor and a Conservative peer, has condemned the mini-budget as the sort of plan “usually tried in Latin American countries without success”. In an interview on Radio 4’s The World This Weekend, he also said he was expecting a serious recession this winter.

He said:

I don’t accept – I never have, the Conservative party never has – the overall premise of the budget, which is that you make tax cuts for the wealthiest 5%, and it makes them work so much harder, and [there’s a] rush to invest. I’m afraid that’s the kind of thing that’s usually tried in Latin American countries without success.

I do not think you stimulate growth by cutting taxes on the better-off, or taxes on business. If it was so simple, we would have got rid of taxes all together some time ago.

What the increased spending power … is going to do is run the risk of further stimulating inflation. And we’re going into a serious inflationary recession this winter.

He also said there was nothing Thatcherite about what Liz Truss was doing.

We’re going into over 100% debt [of GDP]. We’re heading in the Italian direction. That is going to be a problem, a very great problem, in the short term if it leads to a collapse in the pound and the loss of confidence in our economy. We’re going to drive investment away, not attract it.

I don’t think anybody I was ever in government with would have contemplated a budget like this.

Ken Clarke.
Ken Clarke. Photograph: Sophia Evans/The Observer

Peter Mandelson, the former Blairite cabinet minister, told Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday this morning that the mini-budget had created an opportunity for Labour. He explained:

Liz Truss, in effect, and the Conservatives, in effect, are taking their own policy direction off the centre ground, the middle ground of British politics. Now that creates an opportunity for Labour to occupy that centre ground. That’s where the swathe of voters exist in the country who are going to determine the outcome of the next election and they are focused both on economic competence and fairness and social justice. Those are the two sides of the coin – the policy coin, the political coin – that the broad mass of voters right across the centre ground of British politics are focused on. That’s what they want to vote for and that’s what Labour needs to offer.

Lord Mandelson also said he speaks to Keir Starmer and his team “from time to time”, but he said he did not advise Starmer in the way he used to advise Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, and Neil Kinnock earlier.

Angela Rayner speaking at the conference earlier.
Angela Rayner speaking at the conference earlier. Photograph: Adam Vaughan/EPA

On Wednesday the Labour confererence is due to hear a fraternal address from an international speaker. Tom Harwood from GB News may have the name. He posted this on Twitter earlier, before the conference proceedings got under way.

Labour Party conference hall currently testing a video message from Australian Labor leader and Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.

— Tom Harwood (@tomhfh) September 25, 2022

These are from ITV’s Robert Peston on the Sunday Times’s story about Mark Fullbrook, the PM’s chief of staff, being paid via his lobbying company. (See 10.04am and 10.18am.)

The disclosure in the Sunday Times that the PM’s new chief of staff Mark Fullbrook is being paid through his lobbying company shows quite how much Whitehall standards have changed. In 2005 I wrote in @Telegraph that the then cabinet secretary Turnbull… pic.twitter.com/aU3ekyz8XD

— Robert Peston (@Peston) September 25, 2022

instructed Tim Allan he had to sever ALL links with his lobbying firm Portland, including his ownership, if he wanted to take an offered job in Downing St. Allan in the end decided to stick with Portland rather than return to working for Blair. In those days there was…

— Robert Peston (@Peston) September 25, 2022

a much simpler understanding in the Cabinet Office of potential conflicts of interest that had to be avoided.

— Robert Peston (@Peston) September 25, 2022

A Labour government would force perpetrators of domestic violence to be included on a register, like sex offenders, PA Media reports.

PA says:

Shadow justice secretary Steve Reed said the plan would help tackle an “epidemic of violence” against women and girls.

The domestic abuse register would mean those convicted of serial offences and stalking would have to give personal information to the police and notify of any change in circumstances.

The register would allow for better police and law enforcement monitoring of perpetrators and help to identify offending patterns more quickly.

Reed said: “Under the Conservatives, criminals are repeatedly let off while victims are being let down. Labour will get a grip of the Tories’ failure to tackle the epidemic of violence against women and girls – with improved monitoring of domestic abuse perpetrators, longer jail terms for rapists, and more rights for victims.”

Unison general secretary says it does not matter whether Labour figures join picket lines

Christina McAnea, general secretary of Unison, the UK’s biggest union, has defended Keir Starmer in the ongoing row about whether he was right tell Labour frontbenchers not to join RMT picket lines as the union started strike action earlier this year.

Speaking on Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday, McAnea said it did not matter where Labour figures were on picket lines. What mattered was having a Labour government in office, she said: She told Ridge:

I don’t think it makes a difference whether Labour is on picket lines or not.

Labour is there to, I think, hopefully work with us and I think if there’s a Labour government in place, I would hope that we wouldn’t be just about to ballot 400,000 NHS workers by the end of this year.

I would hope that they would talk to us. I wrote to Liz Truss the day she got elected and congratulated her and said we’d be happy to work with her but they obviously see unions as part of the problem.

In his interview this morning with Laura Kuenssberg, asked if Labour should be backing unions in strike disputes, Starmer replied:

My job as leader of the Labour party is not the same job as the leader of a trade union. My job is to make sure that we get the Labour party from opposition, where we can just say things but not do things, into power, where we can do things.

Anti-Brexit campaigners outside the Labour conference.
Anti-Brexit campaigners outside the Labour conference. Photograph: Adam Vaughan/EPA

David Evans, Labour’s general secretary, told the conference in his speech that when he was appointed in 2020 “some confided that they doubted we would ever win again”. But now the party has “a real chance to do something never done before and turn a defeat of that scale [the 2019 result – 163 seats behind the Tories] into a victory in a single term”, he said.

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