Mark Littlewood discusses immigration and tax policy

Mark Littlewood appeared on BBC R5’s Pienaar’s Politics where discussion focussed on immigration in the UK, Labour’s proposed “mansion tax” and the reintroduction of the “10p tax rate”.

Regarding the opening up of Bulgarian and Romanian immigration restrictions to the UK, Mark Littlewood argued that tough talk from political parties was not just a case of “postering for the ballot box”.

“I don’t think there’s actually going to be a problem that suddenly five million Romanians and Bulgarians are going to turn up at Dover beach demanding their housing benefit but I think that Ian Duncan Smith is quite right to say that we’ve got to keep welfare spending under some sort of control,” stated Mr Littlewood.

Mr Littlewood went on to argue that the UK has lost sight of the contributory principle and that a set of rules could be introduced to address this. These would include factors such as what people have paid in before they start taking out and how long people have been in the UK before they start taking out.

Discussing the idea of using a “mansion tax” on homes worth over two million pounds to fund a reintroduction of the “10p tax”, Mark Littlewood stated that the policy sounds great politically but is economically “dim”. Mr Littlewood argued that this sort of tax effects such a tiny sliver of income that to help the poor it would actually be fairer and more effective to raise the tax threshold.

“It seems to me that he wants to edge up the threshold rather than introduce a lower band,” stated Mr Littlewood referring to comments from Grant Shapps MP made earlier in the programme.

Listen to the full programme here. Segment starts at 9.55.