Midlothian MSP slams Tory tax break for banks while National Insurance is set to rise

Local SNP MSP Colin Beattie has slammed the Tory UK government for its decision to hike National Insurance for 58,528 working age people in Midlothian.

Monday, 25th October 2021, 6:00 am
Midlothian North and Musselburgh MSP Colin Beattie. Photo: Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the decision to cut the tax surcharge for banks by more than 60 per cent, less than a month after he announced that thousands of hardworking families would face increases in their National Insurance.

Commenting, Mr Beattie said: “It should be a surprise to no one that the Tories are giving tax breaks to their rich pals in the banks whilst hiking taxes for hardworking families in Midlothian and across Scotland.

“This is inexplicable given that families are facing a cost of living crisis with increasing food bills, energy prices skyrocketing and cuts to Universal Credit.

“The Tories are making it clear that our recovery from the pandemic will be built on the backs of those that can least afford it.

“Under Westminster control, Scotland cannot recover fairly. The only way to protect Scotland from Tory cuts is by becoming an independent country, with the full powers to build a fairer society.”

Scottish Conservative Lothian List MSP Jeremy Balfour responded: “Colin Beattie is peddling the typical nationalist grievance machine, rather than working constructively for the people of Midlothian.

“He would have been better served by questioning his SNP colleagues in Westminster why they voted against £1.1billion worth of extra funding for Scotland’s NHS.

“Our NHS is in crisis and more and more patients in Midlothian are paying the price. SNP MPs voted against money that could be used to tackle A&E waiting times, treatment backlogs and ensure more people can see their GP in person.

“Thankfully that funding is still on the way despite the best efforts of Colin Beattie’s colleagues.

“The SNP MSP’s full focus should be on our recovery from the pandemic and protecting vital jobs and livelihoods across Midlothian. Instead, he wants to divide our communities all over again with another deeply damaging independence referendum.”