David Cameron has today launched one of his most hard-hitting attacks yet on the Government, comparing Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling and their handling of the economy to joy-riders "smashing up the neighbourhood".
Speaking to activists at CCHQ, he asserted that Labour have now "lost all right to govern" in the wake of the Pre-Budget Report, accusing them of "irresponsibility, basic deceit and a complete lack of moral principle".
"I think the Labour Party should be haunted for a decade by what we saw yesterday in terms of irresponsibility, basic deceit and complete lack of moral principle. If anyone needed one more reason to say we need to get rid of this bunch of Labour politicians running our country, yesterday gave every reason that was needed. This country is crying out for change now. We have got to bring that change about."
"Brown and Darling are like a couple of joy-riders in a car smashing up the neighbourhood, not caring what is going to happen and not caring about anyone who might have to take over the mess they have created… They showed no care for the risks they are running with interest rates, the risks they are running for future taxes, the risks they are running in terms of racking up debts for our children."
He said that "the most deceitful act of all" was "to say in your budget statement that you are increasing benefits for some of the most vulnerable people in our country like the disabled, without saying that you have a plan to cut those benefits the year after the election". IN that respect, he compared the Chancellor "some dodgy timeshare salesman who, if they behaved like that, would end up in court."
"At heart, I think there is a sacred trust that every politician should have, which is that if you are at the tiller and the crunch comes, you do the right thing for your country. You put aside personal considerations and political considerations and you do the right thing. Yesterday they did the wrong thing. Confronted with this budget deficit, confronted with the problems, they put their own political fortunes ahead of the fortunes of our country. We have got a few months to get rid of a bunch of politicians who I think have lost the right to govern."
> Earlier in the day the party launched a new poster highlighting the debt Labour has heaped upon everyone in the country, whilst Greg Hands has pointed out that Britain's economic position is now being mocked by the Germans.
> News also comes tonight of a new poll from Angus Reid Strategies for Political Betting which puts the Conservatives on 40%, 17 points ahead of Labour on 23% – the fieldwork for which began on Tuesday and continued until earlier today.