Jeremy Corbyn has accused Conservatives of risking a “war between generations” with a manifesto that pitches young against old.
Addressing a crowd in Wirral the Labour leader said: “What I really resent is the way in which she’s [Theresa May] tried to set the older generation against the younger generation”.
Mr Corbyn had spoken earlier at a rally in Birmingham where he called on Theresa May to ditch an “anti-pensioner package” which inflicted a “triple whammy of misery” on older voters.
He criticised Tory plans to replace the ‘triple lock’ pension scheme with a double lock, introduce a means-testing winter fuel allowance and the value of the family home to count towards the means test for social care.
The Conservative manifesto states that the money saved from stopping the winter fuel allowance for wealthier pensioners will go directly to fund health and social care, which is in crisis.
The Prime Minister says that the ‘triple lock’ had been introduced at a time when there had been a “significant disparity” in pensioner incomes which had now been addressed.
Under the new Tory proposal for a double lock pension, state increases in pensions would be based on inflation or average earnings.
But he insisted that a better deal for pensioners must not come at the expense of the “left-behind generation” of younger people, but should be funded through higher taxes on top earners and big business.
Setting out Labour plans to abolish university tuition fees and build homes for young people, Mr Corbyn said his vision was “not a war between generations, it’s a unity between generations to create a better society for all”.
He said: “Labour’s proposals will ask the top 5% of earners and the big corporations to pay a bit more, to help address these problems.
A Conservative spokesman said: “The biggest threat to every generation in this country is getting Brexit wrong.
“Get Brexit wrong and we get everything wrong – from looking after our elderly to paying for our children’s education.
“Our nation’s economic security and our standing in the world depends on getting the Brexit negotiations right.
“If anyone is thinking about lodging a protest vote because of Jeremy Corbyn’s scare campaign, here’s the thing that’s genuinely terrifying: if Theresa May loses just six seats then we will have a hung Parliament with Jeremy Corbyn as our prime minister, in charge of Brexit and propped up by the Lib Dems and SNP.”