The former Bank of England economist told an audience in Bury that Labour – not the Tories – was now the party of business. She said her party had a “pro-business” plan set out for the UK. As part of this, she insisted: “Now is the wrong time to raise taxes on ordinary working people.”
But commentators have pointed out that just hours before, Ms Reeves announced a new tax that could hit older voters in particular.
Talking at Bury, Ms Reeves said Labour would “keep bills down” by cutting VAT on energy and expanding the Warm Homes Discount.
She claimed this could take “at least £200” off the typical bill, adding that up to £400 of support could be made available in this way for low and middle earners, as well as pensioners.
Earlier the same day, on Thursday, the Shadow Chancellor said the NHS and social care dividend would be maintained by increasing National Insurance.
She added that Labour would increase taxes on buy-to-let properties, as well as on those who earn money from investment.
Some have pointed out that this could hurt the very elderly Britons Ms Reeves later talked about defending.
Tony Diver, Political Correspondent at the Telegraph, highlighted that the move could particularly damage older voters – those who Labour is perhaps most in need of attracting at the next election, whenever that may come.
He wrote that increasing taxes on those who earn from investment could “potentially hit elderly voters who have put their savings into property or the stock market”.
She said: “It’s no wonder the Tories have failed to deal with the cost of living crisis, because the Tories are the cost of living crisis.
“We need a serious plan to deliver higher growth, built on the knowledge that wealth doesn’t just trickle from the top down, but comes from the bottom up and the middle out.”
The Shadow Chancellor was introduced to the Bury audience by Christian Wakeford.
Mr Wakeford, a former Tory MP, defected to Labour this week, citing Boris Johnson’s “disgraceful” conduct over what has been dubbed ‘Partygate’.
His presence is likely to have been intended to further push the image that Labour was taking over as the party of business in Parliament.