After George Osborne’s politically disastrous ‘omnishambles’ of a budget last year, did he manage to redeem himself this week? It was never going to be a particularly radical budget because, one, he has no money to spend, and two, he told Tory MPs recently "Look, I tried radicalism in last year’s Budget, and I had blowback for it. So I’d take quite some persuading to do something radical this time." Analysis of the budget so far has not found anything particularly controversial. In fact, probably the most contentious aspect was that the Evening Standard broke the embargo on many announcements by tweeting its front page before the Osborne even stood up. The Labour frontbench all had photocopies of the paper while the Chancellor was speaking much to his annoyance.
The relationship between the media and government is particularly tense at the moment, given the measures to regulate the press following the Leveson Inquiry, brokered by the three main parties.
While not all the coverage was positive – particularly in The Sun – my guess is Osborne is probably glad not to be the story this time round.
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