Labour has accused the government of cutting support for parents by “deceit and subterfuge” following the announcement that tax credits will be axed for many families earning £30,000.
Payments of around £545 a year will be abolished for households with one child and a total income of £30,000, according to Treasury documents published alongside the Budget.
But George Osborne, the Chancellor, claimed during his Budget speech to Parliament that the Government would “reduce payments to families earning over £40,000”.
The discrepancy sparked angry clashes during Prime Minister’s Questions, when acting Labour leader Harriet Harman told David Cameron: “You weren’t straight with families”.
Birmingham Labour MP Steve McCabe (Selly Oak) said: “For all David Cameron’s talk about transparency and new politics, this Budget is actually an exercise in deceit and subterfuge.
“There are plenty of couples in Birmingham who might earn £30,000 between them and with a family and a mortgage, they are not well off.
“Those tax credits are factored into their ability to pay the mortgage and make ends meet, and now the money is being taken off them through deceit.”
During the Commons exchange, Mr Cameron pointed out that Labour had failed to say what they would do to cut the deficit.
He said: “Who left us in this mess? “Who left a budget deficit of £155 billion with absolutely no proposals to deal with it?”
The Prime Minister added: “The whole country can see what’s happening here.
“One party put us into this mess. Two parties are working together to get us out of it.”
Mr Cameron and Ms Harman also clashed over the coalition government’s plans for pensions.
The Government has said that pensions will now increase each year either in line with earnings, inflation or by 2.5 per cent, whichever is higher.