Nigel Farage left ‘rattled’ in ‘automobile crash’ GMB interview – ’embarrassing’

Nigel Farage was left ‘rattled’ during a ‘car crash’ interview on Good Morning Britain – and viewers were wincing.

The Reform UK leader faced a heated grilling from presenters Susanna Reid and Ed Balls as he desperately tried to clarify his party’s tax plans. After Farage unveiled Reform’s “contract” to voters yesterday, leading economists were quick to debunk the figures, warning the right-wing party’s plans would be a disaster for public services – which have already faced brutal cuts under the Tories.

Farage was called out on his party’s personal tax proposal, which he claimed would help people who claim benefits. Former shadow chancellor Balls slapped down the politicians proposal by arguing it’s the rich who would really cash in.

The ITV presenter said: “People on benefits wouldn’t benefit at all from the personal tax allowance because they wouldn’t be paying any tax.” He added: “Facts are important here. The person who would benefit most from your personal tax proposal is someone who earns £95,000.”

Farage danced around the question, as he responded “the poorest in society would benefit the most” without offering further details on how. Pressing even further, Balls said said: “They would gain far more than somebody on average earnings, who would gain much more than somebody on the minimum wage. Did you not know that?”

A flapping Farage insisted his proposals were correct “on percentage terms”. However, this was again rebuffed by Mr Balls, who said: “That’s not right. Somebody on the minimum wage would gain less, absolutely and proportionally, than somebody on average earnings or on £95,000. Your tax proposals help people who are richer rather than poorer.”

The tense exchange seemed to leave Farage flustered, as he moaned: “This is so typical.” GMB viewers took to social media to criticise the Reform UK leader after the grilling. One person wrote: “Slippery, defensive Farage, weary of inconvenient truths, reverts to name-calling and stereotyping when he’s caught out lying again.”

Another said: “Well done Susanna Reid and Ed Balls. Farage falling apart faster than a failed Soufflé. It’s never him but he has leadership aspirations.” Meanwhile, a third wrote: “God that was embarrassing. Suspect Farage will spend the rest of the day licking his wounds after that train-crash interview”.

Later on in the show, Mr Balls reflected on the heated interview alongside journalist Andrew Pierce and The Mirror’s Associate Editor Kevin Maguire, where he said: “I don’t think Nigel Farage is very used to answering questions about his policies”.

The presenter’s comment was met with laughter from Kevin, who said: “Nigel Farage would get a much bigger tax cut under his plans than his chauffeur.” “And he doesn’t want that exposed.. What he uses and loves is that he can go on a panel like Question Time, you can have your shout and nobody gets interrogated.

“Most of them try and hide their irritation when they can’t answer questions. Because if you do, you expose a fundamental truth are attempting to conceal every time they say: let’s be clear. He didn’t like the fact that he was being questioned.”

Reform UK’s tax plans have been met with horror by economists who are baffled by the party’s calculations. Mr Farage plans to raise the income tax threshold from £12,571 to £20,000, while raising the higher rate threshold from £50,000 to £70,000.

Stamp duty would be scrapped on properties worth less than £750,000 and inheritance tax would be axed on estates worth less than £2million. Reform claims these huge commitments can be funded by “slashing public sector back office bureaucracy” worth £50billion a year.

In reality, economists say Reform’s sums don’t add up. The IFS thinktank said slashing taxes by £90 billion a year would still see tax revenues higher as a share of the economy than in 2019–20 – and likely cost tens of billions of pounds a year more than predicted.

It also said the efficiency savings “would almost certainly require substantial cuts to the quantity or quality of public services”.