LIBERAL DEMOCRATS – LOCAL INCOME TAX – 10 February 2004

Dr Julian Lewis: There is a certain déjà vu to this debate – I am thinking back to the Community Charge, which was introduced before the hon. Gentleman [Lib-Dem spokesman Edward Davey] and I were in this House. If we had a Local Income Tax, what would happen where a household had three or four wage-earners who all paid that tax, whereas previously just one householder had paid the Council Tax? How would the hon. Gentleman avoid the same sort of demonstrations and upsets that attended the Community Charge? Is not this the Liberals' version of the Poll Tax?

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Dr Lewis: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I appreciate that we are having what is called an Opposition Day debate, but does that mean that the Liberal Democrats should spend the entire debate talking about the Conservative Opposition? Is it conceivable that they should talk about the policies of the Government?