So many people seem to be saying get rid of tax credits, just raise the earnings threshold. It's a mantra that's repeated often but is nowhere near as effective a weapon as many people think.
If you raise the tax threshold by £1000 that's effectively deducting £200 from the tax bill of everyone who earns more than that threshold. That's everyone, from workers on the minimum wage right through to CEO's on million pound salaries.
Obviously, making such a tax cut carries an associated cost, a finger in the air guess is at around £6 billion. And here's the rub, that £6 billion is being spent making a considerable number of not so needy people £200 better off. Surely a better plan would be to concentrate that money where it's most needed.
Hence tax credits, clumsy and bureaucratic no doubt. But far more effective at putting money where it's most needed than the "raiding the tax threshold" panacea.