Gordon Brown is considering raising the tax-free allowance to £10,000 as part of measures to help families struggling with the credit crunch, a close ally has claimed.
John McFall, chairman of the influential Commons Treasury committee, said he knows the move - which would effectively exempt millions of low-paid workers from income tax - is "in the Prime Minister's mind".
We at UKIP of course support such a move. For it's something which we've been arguing for some time, that the first and most basic thing we have to do with our income tax system is to stop taxing the working poor. Of course, we go further and argue that we need to simplify the system by having a flat tax as well. But at least we can see that the basic idea, that it is near insane to both tax and provide tax credits to the same people, is getting through.
It's also an interesting example of how things work in politics. When we first announced this policy, that the working poor should be taken out of the tax net altogether, it was considered to be near lunacy. Now, only a couple of short years later, it's become a mainstream idea. Even Polly Toynbee has been known to support it (yes, I know, that's not quite something we would use normally as a recommendation of an idea, Polly's support, but...) and now we've got one of the Prime Minister's close colleagues floating it as a trial balloon.
It may and does take time, but sensible ideas do tend to get picked up if only someone is brave enough to propose them in the first place.