Last night, after a debate on the government's Welfare Reform and Work Bill, I voted against the Government's pernicious and regressive bill.
This Bill will punish millions of working people through cuts to tax credits, it will catch out families with more than 2 children and impose on them a financial penalty for having a larger family, it will mean 330,000 young people suffering as a result of the reduction in the benefit cap and to cover it all up the government will redefine what it means to be poor; if you don't have enough money to get by that will no longer be called 'poverty'. It is shocking.
The Government did not spell out these welfare cuts before the election because they could not justify punishing those who work long hours for little pay. They could not justify it because it is impossible to justify.
But more than that, it is economic illiteracy.
Working people - already in poverty because their employer does not pay them enough count every single penny just to get through the week. I know countless people like that in my constituency. Where does the government suppose the £1,000 they will lose out on through the cuts to tax credits will go? They will have to resort to loading ever increasing debt onto credit cards - that's why household debt now stands at a record high, higher even than in 2007 just before the crash.
We cannot push people further into poverty, it is morally unjustifiable and economic madness. That's why I voted against the government last night.