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Hard Times for David Cameron

2 minute read

British Prime Minister David Cameron made his tax returns public on April 11, under pressure from revelations in the Panama Papers about his father’s offshore investment vehicle. Although he has not been accused of any wrongdoing, the feud over his finances adds to the controversies the embattled PM is facing:


The referendum on Britain’s membership in the E.U. planned for June 23 has exposed a deep rift in Cameron’s ruling Conservative Party, with six members of his Cabinet breaking with the Prime Minister to lobby for a “Brexit.” Former party leader Iain Duncan Smith resigned from the front bench in March in a move widely seen as a challenge to Cameron’s leadership.


Cameron unveiled new rules to tackle tax evasion after the Panama Papers, but the revelation that his family benefited from an offshore fund is embarrassing, as he has long been a critic of similar tax dodges. The affair has drawn comparisons to scandals that helped bring down John Major’s Conservative government in the 1990s.


The sterling took a hit April 12 after a national poll found that more Brits wanted to leave the E.U. than remain. While the Brussels attacks have stoked nativist sentiment, Cameron’s tax issues have also hurt his credibility as the nation’s cheerleader for the “remain” camp. If Britain does vote to leave the E.U. in June, Cameron’s time in office is almost certainly up.


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