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As the row rumbles on about the government's benefit changes, Big Issue founder John Bird argues the "bloated welfare state has caught the poor in a trap".
Writing in the Times (£), he said that the welfare state has done an "effective job in keeping the poor poor and the jobless jobless".
He also insists that the welfare state has outgrown the economy due to the advocacy of "self declared defenders of the poor - the bosses of the poverty industry, the whole web of charities and campaigning groups who depend upon the welfare state for their existence".
Keiran Pedley, politics and media pollster for Comres, said the company believe George Osborne's personal standing "is the lowest it has ever been" as the Chancellor defended his benefit reforms today.
The pollster told ITV News: "On George Osborne's standing, we have recently found that over half of the public think that his economic plan isn't working.
"We've tracked trust in the economy with George Osborne and David Cameron over time and we are currently finding that they are at their lowest levels since the election.
"So Osborne's personal standing, in a wider sense, is the lowest it has ever been, which will raise questions over whether these benefit reforms are sellable to the British public."
The Chancellor earlier defended his new welfare changes and attacked the defenders of the "broken" benefit system.
Respected financial analysts the Institute for Fiscal Studies has told ITV News that working households would "substantially" gain from the new welfare benefit changes, but that they would be down overall since the coalition was formed in 2010.
Senior research economist Robert Joyce said: "If you look at just the changes coming in this month and you look at working households then the majority of those will gain and will gain quite substantially.
"That is mainly because of the rise to the personal allowance, which will reduce the amount of income tax that they pay.
"That stands in quite significant contrast to the wider consolidation.
"Looking at all the measures that are happening that started in 2010 and that are happening to the end of this parliament, if you look at all the measures announced over that period, then most of those families will lose overall because of things like the main rise in VAT back in January 2011."
Chancellor George Osborne earlier said that the welfare and tax changes "will make work pay".
The changes to the benefits system have been widely condemned, including by a group of four churches.
Paul Morrison, a public issues policy adviser at the Methodist Church told ITV News: "Many of the poorest will be worse off because of the benefits that have changed".
After the Chancellor gave a speech defending welfare reforms and dismissing criticisms which he said were "headline seeking nonsense", many people tweeted their reaction:
Chancellor George Osborne has defended welfare benefit reforms and hit out at critics of the changes, accusing them of "defending the indefensible".
Chancellor George Osborne has strongly defended the Government's controversial welfare reforms today, insisting the system was "fundamentally broken" and had to change.
Chancellor George Osborne has defended welfare and tax changes that are being introduced this month.
In a speech, he said: "For too long we've had a system where people who did the right thing, who get up in the morning and work hard felt penalised for it. While people who did the wrong thing got rewarded for it. That's wrong.
"So, this month we're going to put things right. This month, nine out of ten working households will be better off as a result of the changes we are making. This month we will make work pay".
Latest ITV News reports
George Osborne has accused the Government's welfare reform critics of talking "ill-informed rubbish."
Find out more about the raft of changes to the welfare benefits system that began to come into force from the 1 April.