UK Politics

Footballer Sol Campbell tackles Labour MP over 'mansion tax'

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Media captionFormer England footballer Sol Campbell clashes with Labour MP Owen Smith over the party's proposed mansion tax

Former England footballer Sol Campbell has clashed with Labour MP Owen Smith over the party's proposed "mansion tax" on properties worth over £2m.

Mr Campbell told BBC Daily Politics the tax was "flawed and not fair at all" and would hurt people who were "a way away from London and oligarchs".

He said Labour were "punishing me for sticking out my neck and going for it".

But Owen Smith said his party was only asking people like Mr Campbell "to pay your fair share".

He said Mr Campbell owned a £25m house in London and a "country pile" in Northumberland.

'Come from nothing'

He also told Daily Politics people who were "struggling" under this government would have "zero sympathy" for people who complained about having to pay the tax.

Mr Owen said there was a "gross inequality between those who've got the most, like Sol", and those at the bottom.

He added that it was "absolute nonsense" to allow "unearned wealth just sitting in the economy" when it could be used to fund the NHS.

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Media captionSol Campbell says Labour's mansion tax policy is a "tax on aspiration'"

But Sol Campbell said he had "come from nothing", and was being punished for having made it to the top.

He also said there was a significant divide in his wealth between his assets and his income: "I'm not earning what I'm earning five years ago."

Mr Campbell is the latest celebrity to have criticised Labour's proposals, including pop singer Myleene Klass, comedian Griff Rhys Jones, and the actor and director Angelina Jolie.

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps said: "Labour's every instinct is to tax everything that moves."

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