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Osborne: Budget for 'makers, doers and savers'

The Chancellor George Osborne has unveiled measures to benefit pensioners and savers in his penultimate Budget before the election. But he has warned Britain is still set to face years of austerity, despite improved economic forecasts.

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Pickles attacks Balls over 'sleeping during Budget' claim

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has hit back at Ed Balls after the shadow chancellor suggested he had fallen asleep during today's Budget speech.

Mr Balls had told a briefing of lobby journalists:

"Eric Pickles fell asleep for a quite extended period of time and Ed [Miliband] and I were worried because, you never know, there might have been some big cut in local government spending coming which he didn't know about so we just politely suggested to Vince Cable that he should wake him up."

In a Twitter reply to the Daily Mail's Tim Shipman, Mr Pickles witheringly dismissed Mr Balls' claims.

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