MORE than a dozen newly-elected Tory MPs from the partys new Red Wall seats have warned Boris Johnson and Chancellor Rishi Sunak against hiking fuel duty.
They warn that ending the decade-long fuel duty freeze will let down hundreds of thousands of Brits in the North and the Midlands who voted Tory for the first time in December.
In a notably firm letter for newbie MPs, the group say that it would show these communities that this Peoples Government does not actually have, at its heart, the priorities of the people.
In total 18 Tory MPs have signed the letter – 14 of whom helped the PM win his landslide election by winning in Labour heartlands.
They have backed HOARs Keep It Down campaign calling for fuel duty to be kept frozen at 58p per litre.
Britain has the highest fuel duty rate in the world.
But HOAR revealed last week that the Treasury is considering lifting the freeze in next weeks Budget, despite Mr Johnsons election pledge not to. It would mean fuel duty would rise in line with inflation, adding 2p onto a litre of petrol or diesel at the pumps.
The 18 MPs from the Blue Collar Conservativism group wrote to the Chancellor to say that clobbering voters with the fuel duty rise would send the wrong message – especially to many who backed the Tories for the first time.
They told Mr Sunak: If the decision was taken to raise taxes on fuel, hard-working people and businesses in blue collar communities – many of which lent us their support at the General Election for the first time in generations – will suffer.
We appreciate that levelling up local transport in blue collar communities across the country is firmly at the top of the Prime Ministers agenda.
As a Yorkshire MP, we know you will, too.
But clobbering these communities with a tax rise in our first Budget would send the wrong message about this Governments priorities.
Among the 14 signatories who won their seats for the first time were Dehenna Davison, who turned Bishop Auckland blue for the first time, Paul Howell, who won Tony Blairs constituency of Sedgefield and Mark Fletcher, who won Bolsover from Labour veteran Dennis Skinner.
Tory MPs Jack Lopresti, Philip Davies, Robert Halfon, and Julian Knight, also signed the letter.
They said: Any decision to scrap the fuel duty freeze must be seen for what it is: a tax rise which would hit our blue collar communities hardest
Increasing fuel duty would show these communities that this peoples Government does not actually have, at its heart, the priorities of the people.
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