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Minister defends 'Lamborghini for your pension' statement

By Western Daily Press  |  Posted: March 25, 2014

Pensions minister Steve Webb explains his Lamborghini remark

Comments (3)

Pensions minister Steve Webb has told the Western Daily Press exactly why he is so relaxed about the idea of people using their pension pot to buy a Lamborghini.

On the day London Mayor Boris Johnson admitted he was so excited by Mr Webb's comments that he stood on his chair to cheer the Liberal Democrat MP for Thornbury & Yate, Mr Webb has explained why he believes people should have the choice.

Mr Webb made his Lamborghini comment after Chancellor George Osborne came under fire for major changes in the Budget which allow people to cash in their pensions rather than buy annuities.

The move appears to have turned around Tory fortunes with opinion polls showing it has delivered the Conservatives a massive electoral boost. Yesterday Mr Johnson rushed to defend Mr Webb from critics who said people would squander their savings and be left with no money for their old age.

"He is making a moral point, that when people reach a pensionable age they should be allowed to run their own lives, and not be treated like children," said Mr Johnson.

"There may indeed be some foolish old people who end up living in a rusting and motionless Lamborghini eating dog food," said Mr Johnson in a column praising the West MP, "but it is up to them".

He added: "As I am sure Steve Webb meant to imply, the Lamborghini option is not going to be for everyone – not when the average pension pot is £25,000.

"But the point is that it is their look-out; it is their savings; it is up to them to decide what to do with it."

Pensions are now predicted to be a possible election winner with hundreds of thousands of over 50s expected to use their pension pots to help their children climb on the property ladder.

Mr Webb said the changes are "a big step forward" and would allow people to spend more money earlier in their retirement, when they could enjoy it, or pay off their mortgage and debts early.

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  • RobtheFox  |  March 27 2014, 8:38AM

    "....but the point is that it is their look-out, it is their savings it is up to them to decide what to do with ıt" Was it their lookout, Mr. Webb, that they should have appreciated you were in fact a turn coat when it came to the frozen pension policy? Was it not you who described the policy of successive governments not to index pensions for UK citizens livıing in some overseas countries, but not those in EEA or Macedonia or Israel or even the USA, as beıng illogical, irrartional, discriminatory and down right unjust? And is it not you who can offer no plauable justification for this policy? These pensioners contributed under the same terms to the NI Scheme as everyone else when working but you deny them the right to claim their pensions under the same terms as everyone else. The removal of the existing regulation 3 and the withdrawal of Clause 20 of the Pension Reform Bill for whıch there ıs no legal, moral, fınancıal or administrative justıfcatıon would bring some credibility to your tainted Ministerial career. Otherwise I suspect that just as your quote that "sympathy butters no parsnips" comes back to haunt you so, too, will the purile Lamborghini reference and simply strengthen the view that rather than "fairness" being one of your four basıc principles being hypocritical is a more apt description.

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  • Morgeo  |  March 26 2014, 9:59PM

    "He is making a moral point, that when people reach a pensionable age they should be allowed to run their own lives, and not be treated like children," said Mr Johnson." Where is the morality in denying 560,000 qualified pensioners who live in the countries where the government employ their discriminative policy of freezing them out and deny any increases, while the majority 96 % of pensioners get the indexing ? Mt Johnson , you seem to be badly informed if you did not know this , otherwise you are as bad as he is in supporting it. The Commonwealth Charter spelt out the aims of the countries governments and the UK government see fit to ignore it thereby embarrassing the Queen who signed it on their behalf. Diabolical, Illogical and undemocratic !

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  • reubedube  |  March 25 2014, 12:41PM

    So Boris was "so excited" by Steve Webb's comments. Really ? So it evidently does not take much to excite Boris ? We have a toy rattle we let our granddaughter play with , perhaps he'd like to borrow it for a while . It's really good and exciting ! The rich boys , Boris , Cameron , Osborne , and many others of their ilk , really are still boys , the Peter Pans of our modern world . They've never really grown up to know what the real world is all about . They probably know to the last half-penny how much money they have , and rather naively believe all people have sheds-full of the stuff . When Boris declares "the Lamborghini option is not going to be for everyone - not when the average pension pot is £25,000" , he really does show how very much he is out of touch with reality ! £25,000 the average ! Just where does he get his figures from ? I think I may know: I think he is including ALL pensioners , millionaires ; all ex-bankers C.E.O.s ; all top-line politicians , and even people like me with my state pension and wee ex-employers pension which I paid into for years. As long as these rich boys (not too many 'rich girls in a Tory government) , continue to believe they were 'born to rule' , we will continue to be showered with condescending and patronising sound-bites , particularly as we approach elections. There is an old saying though , which I personally believe in . "You can fool some of the people some of the time , but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time " . The rich boys' time is almost up !

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