If in doubt I have produced this clever 'ready reckoner' that means you can calculate how much 'bedroom tax' you'll pay. Simply find how many people live in your home, how many bedrooms you have follow the lines and where they meet is how much 'bedroom tax' you'll pay.
Here's what's wrong with their claim
I hope to publish a picture guide to government finance for Key stage 1 pupils and Labour activists another time, but in summary;
Tax = Your money that the government take to pay for services and benefits
Benefits = tax payers money that the government has collected being handed out.
The changes to housing benefit may result in some modest savings to government, so a reduction in payments to people. (will primarily make better use of the limited social housing stock) But the government will not be collecting any extra money off people.
Secondly if you say bedroom tax, we all pay it if we have a bedroom. This again is an absolute lie. If any of these apply to you, you don't receive Housing benefit, are in receipt of a state pension, live in private accommodation or don't have a spare room, then you can't lose anthing
So why do Labour do it?
Firstly the addiction to spin. Research says when people hear government are cutting benefit, it divides opinion. Some believe benefits are too high or unfair, others will be horrified. If you say 'new tax' opinion is less divided and more opposed (unless it's from bankers of course).
If Labour came out and said
"The government are no longer prepared to use tax payers money to pay full housing benefit to those of working age who have a bigger home than they need and Labour don't like it very much".
Well it's hardly a game changer (and wouldn't really work as T-shirt campaign.)
Many would be supportive of the Government, most wouldn't be too bothered, of course some would support Labour's
Say 'bedroom tax'........................... and suddenly we're all a bit scared,
people knocking walls down so they can tell the tax inspector "it's not a bedroom, just a really wide hallway" or setting off to B&Q to get a cheap bath for the kids room so you can claim bedroom three is actually an extra bathroom. (all of which would technically be tax avoidance if you did it, if there was a tax, which there isn't, so you can, but there's not a lot of point).
All that fear is what Labour want families to live with . They can't win your vote with big ideas, they haven't got any, so they'll use fear.
I quizzed a Labour councillor about using lies to win elections, she didn't deny it, simply responded "negative campaigning works" . So tonights blog has confirmed two thing we already knew
1. You will not pay bedroom tax
2. Labour will never let facts get in the way of a campaign