Here is a graph that I hope gets some wide attention, it tracks the price of petrol at the pump over the last few years. I saw it on Political Betting, who in turn took it from WhatGas.Com
Petrol prices are way too high because it is relentlessly taxed. The pips are squeaking because we are being pressed too hard. I understand that not everybody agrees with me on points of the environment, but nobody buys petrol who doesn’t need it, allowing the price to fall by an easing of fuel duty is not going to encourage people to go out and buy additional petrol, it is just going to make life a little easier for people who are struggling.
This graph is a little out of date, but makes the point quite nicely.
The Tories have traditionally done well when people are feeling the squeeze because they are viewed as the low tax party and have traditionally been on the side of families when it comes to tax and welfare. I suspect this will change in the next few years as the Conservatives seem to have accepted the notion of moving towards so called “green taxes” which will probably mean that fuel duties will not come down under them.
This is one of the areas I think the Conservatives could explain better. I am looking for a low tax party and despite the recession I think there are many in the Conservative Party that will push for tax cuts to bolster demand and consumer spending in a year or so once their feet are under their desks and the majority of cuts have been initiated. But, if the Tories are going green and we cannot expect relief on tax duties or tax relief on such things as flights, where will the Conservatives make things easier for their core voters? I don’t know and I want to know and it is not something that would require a concrete pledge; a nudge would suffice.