(Bloomberg) -- Rachel Reeves said a Labour government would prioritize economic stability, workers’ rights and business interests, as she sought to forge a dividing line with the Conservative Party’s “reckless” tax cuts and accused Rishi Sunak of repeating the mistakes of Liz Truss.

Reeves, who will become the UK’s first female Chancellor of the Exchequer if the polls are correct and Labour wins the general election, used her campaign speech to pitch herself as a fiscally responsible would-be finance minister who will not make spending commitments she cannot keep.

The choice facing British voters on July 4 is “five more years of chaos with the Conservatives” or “stability with a changed Labour Party,” Reeves said in a speech at a Rolls-Royce factory in Derby in the East Midlands on Tuesday. “The Conservatives do deserve to be judged on their record.”

Sunak’s Tories are trying to box Reeves in with costly policy ideas, including a plan to lift defense spending and reintroduce national service for younger Britons, and then challenging Labour to match them knowing the opposition party’s priorities lie elsewhere. Sunak’s latest gambit is a promise to unfreeze the personal tax allowance for pensioners — effectively reversing Conservative policy — to ensure rising state pension payments are not subject to income tax.

But Reeves said the policy, which is also seen as an attempt to shore up Tory support among older voters and those attracted by the right-wing Reform UK party, is “dangerous and reckless” and fits a pattern of what she described as “unfunded” tax cuts that Sunak hopes will boost his standing in the polls. 

She also drew parallels with Truss, the former Conservative premier who roiled financial markets in 2022 with a series of unfunded tax giveaways.

Reeves, a former Bank of England economist, said rather than Tory “gimmicks,” Labour would take care of the public finances and promised not to hold a fiscal event without an analysis by the Office for Budget Responsibility — another reference to Truss. That suggests she will not rush out a budget in the summer.

She said Labour would portray itself as the “natural party of British business,” arguing that an administration led by Starmer would value input from the private sector, which she insisted the opposition did not see as a “dirty word.”

Labour’s manifesto would reflect the results of years of engagement with business that Reeves has led, she said, in language that appeared designed to reassure firms which have expressed concerns about the party’s pledge to bolster workers’ rights, a policy that was rebranded at the weekend from a “New Deal for working people” to a “plan to make work pay.”

Reeves also appeared to rule out any new tax rises beyond those already announced by Labour, including charging VAT on private school fees and extending the windfall tax on energy firms.

“No additional tax rises are needed beyond the ones I’ve set out,” she said.

Those lines set up what will likely be a major battle in the election campaign. The Tories have said they would fund the pensioner tax cut and a new mandatory National Service program with a clampdown on tax avoidance it claimed would raise £6 billion. Labour will argue that the sums don’t add up, and will also raise questions about why the party which has governed Britain for 14 years has only now identified those potential savings in the tax system.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies think tank also pointed out that adjusted for inflation, the tax allowance for pensioners is now 10% lower than it was when the Conservatives came to power in 2010.

Meanwhile, Sunak used a campaign event in Stoke-on-Trent to argue that Labour leader Keir Starmer planned to lift the tax burden on Britons — an attack line that ignores the fact it’s forecast to reach post-World War II levels under Conservative policies. “The only certainty that you’re gonna get with the Labour party is that they’re going to run out of money and put up your taxes, as clear as night and day,” Sunak said.

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