Cost of living crisis: Johnson and Snack face a ministerial rebellion as ministers oppose unexpected tax and demand plans

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Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak face a growing ministerial rebellion over the cost of living, while top Conservatives resent their failure to commit to a coherent economic message.

Three senior ministers launched attacks on the idea of ​​an unexpected tax on oil and gas companies on Friday, even as the prime minister and chancellor continued to assess policy.

Many Conservatives have warned that the party risks losing the confidence of voters if it fails to convince them that the short-term effects of inflation will give way to long-term economic benefits.

Most ministers broadly support the idea of ​​capping the amount of direct support available to families to avoid the risk of an inflationary spiral that could last for years.

But at this week’s cabinet meeting, Culture Minister Nadine Dorries reportedly warned her colleagues that the government must clarify its vision on future economic growth or else it will be blamed on pressure on the cost of living and a possible recession for this year. . “We have to show that there is a strategy at the end of the day,” a source said.

ex-minister says me The Conservatives should echo David Cameron and George Osborne’s “Long Term Economic Plan” and say, “Maybe we should make this our motto at the next general election! It’s always good to remember past successes.”

Another Conservative Party official said: “Under David and George we’ve always had a ‘long-term economic plan’ – it probably didn’t mean much time, but it ultimately signaled to people that we knew what we were doing and that we had a goal.”

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In the coming weeks, the prime minister and chancellor will decide whether the snap tax, which many MPs support, will be imposed and whether energy companies can explain how to invest their excess profits in the North Sea and renewable energies.

But Economy Minister Kwasi Quarting cautioned against the idea, telling Bloomberg: “I’ve always been against the windfall tax, and I think it’s random, and I think it discourages investment.” He added, “I can’t say as energy minister, please invest in our energy security, but by the way I’m going to give you an unexpected tax, it doesn’t make sense.”

Jacob Rees-Mogg, Minister for Brexit Opportunities, told Sky News: “The idea that there is a honey pot of shops that you can loot only if you feel is incorrect. All taxes ultimately fall on individuals.” Profits are not an enemy of conservatives. Profits mean more investment. Gains mean more research. Profits mean more jobs,” Attorney General Suila Braverman told Conservative Home.

Speaking to the Welsh Conservative Party’s annual conference yesterday, Boris Johnson said: “I’m not going to pretend to you that we can get rid of all the expenses that people will incur as a result of the global rise in energy prices, but they have no doubt that it will happen, we will get people through, we will use firepower. that we built to put our arms around people like we did during the pandemic.”

But he added that the crisis exposed the UK’s inability to control its own energy supply, saying: “I am deeply concerned with the crisis now, but what we also need to avoid are future crises and future hikes in energy costs. It’s crazy that this country feeds electricity from the continent, From France. It’s crazy, if we had our own hydrocarbons, we would continue to take them out of Putin’s Russia. “

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