Rishi Sunak is set to enrage Boris Johnson’s allies as he prepares to rip up a core part of his old boss’s legacy. The Prime Minister is thought to be preparing to delay the cap on social care costs in order to help avoid making further cuts elsewhere.
Mr Sunak and Chancellor Jeremy Hunt need to find £60billion of savings in next week’s Autumn Statement in order to balance the books.
Officials believe delaying the social care cap will help save £1billion in its first year and as much as £3billion a year if scrapped completely.
The Prime Minister last week suggested the social care cap be delayed “indefinitely”, according to The Times.
However, he agreed to instead announce a two-year postponement in order to limit the political fallout.
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Mr Sunak’s decision to delay the implementation of the cost cap risks leaving Tory backbenchers and allies of Mr Johnson furious.
Last month former culture secretary Nadine Dorries lashed out at Liz Truss when she was thinking to be considering a delay to the social care plan.
She said a delay was “designed to kick the can down the road indefinitely” and was part of a “full-turn reversal to Treasury orthodoxy”.
Meanwhile, Caroline Abrahams of Age UK said: “It’s really sad that Boris Johnson’s grandiose pledge to ‘fix social care’ eventually fizzled out into merely an intention to bring in a cap on catastrophic care costs in future years, falling way short of the expectations. he raised.
“If the Chancellor does announce next week that he is kicking it into the long grass, probably to disappear altogether, it will mean we have endured a lost decade or more where social care is concerned.
“Millions of older and disabled people have had to put up with inadequate services over that period.”
The proposed delay comes after the health and social care levy, introduced to help pay for the plans, was also axed last month.
Ms Truss ditched the extra tax introduced earlier this year as part of her growth agenda.