Budgets compared

Written by Total Politics has a free weekly Friday email bulletin. Follow this link to register. on 23 March 2011 in Diary
Word clouds comparing George Osborne's Budget today with his Emergency Budget and Alistair Darling's last effort

George Osborne's Budget March 2011

George Osborne's Emergency Budget June 2010

Labour's final Budget presented by Alistair Darling March 2010


As expected, the Chancellor in his Budget today attempted to move the discussion away from one of ‘cuts’ to talk of ‘growth’. The former word appeared only three times, including one reference to cutting regulation and the other to protecting the science budget. We also saw fewer references today to the public sector than we did in the first Coalition government Budget as the narrative shifted from government fiscal constraints to wealth creation.

Growth was the buzzword of the speech, appearing two dozen times, with the ancillary ‘jobs’ receiving ten mentions. There was a similar mention of ‘businesses’ and ‘rates’ as we find in the 2010 Emergency Budget as the Coalition continued to talk about reducing regulation and supporting enterprise.

One marked distinction between the two, however, was the heavily used ‘billion’ in June’s Emergency Budget which appeared more than twice than it did today as the Chancellor then talked about the savings that were going to be made.

The word ‘cuts’ was as unpopular today as it was back in Alistair Darling’s final Budget as Chancellor, when it appeared a mere four times. But as we saw today, the focus in March 2010 was also on the help the government could provide in terms of creating jobs and growth, supporting families and businesses, and ensuring a sustainable recovery.

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