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Rishi Sunak attacks Truss tax cut plan after big interest rate rise

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theguardian.com

Rishi Sunak has seized on the Bank of England’s historic half-point rate rise to claim that Liz Truss’s plan for unfunded tax cuts would “make everyone poorer”.The Bank’s gloomy forecasts, published alongside the rate decision, underline the scale of the challenge facing the next prime minister, with the economy projected to plunge into a prolonged recession by the end of the year.Despite the dire economic outlook, the Guardian has learned the chancellor, Nadhim Zahawi, is away from Westminster, as the caretaker government takes a back seat while the leadership contest rages.Zahawi was said to be working remotely from a family holiday.In a statement, the chancellor said: “There is no such thing as a holiday and not working.

I never had that in the private sector, nor in government. Ask any entrepreneur and they can tell you that.”He added: “Millions of us dream about getting away with our families, but the privilege and responsibility of public service means that you never get to switch off, that’s why I have had calls and briefings every day and continue to do so.” The prime minister is currently on holiday.Zahawi put out a written statement on the Bank’s announcement and is holding meetings with its governor, Andrew Bailey, later on Thursday and the Treasury’s chief economist.Sunak, the underdog in the leadership race, has repeatedly said throughout the contest that he would wait until inflation was under control, before embarking on a tax-cutting spree.By contrast, Truss has promised £30bn worth of tax cuts, which Sunak has claimed would push up borrowing and boost inflation.“The Bank has acted today and it is imperative that any future government grips inflation, not exacerbates it,” he said.“Increasing borrowing

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