Con-dem front line spinner Iain Duncan Smith picked a foggy day in London today to cloud child poverty by side-stepping real issues and spotlighting trivia.
The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions tried to give some gravitas to ropey government policies by saying a new way of defining child poverty must be found.
He said there must be a change in the way it is measured and then, standing alongside Lib Dem schools minister David Laws, denied their proposals were about "massaging the figures."
Mr Duncan Smith said he wanted to use a "multidimensional" measure which takes into account factors like worklessness, family stability and parents' health and skills.
But he didn't fool campaigners. They hit back saying the coalition government is only trying to duck commitments to abolishing child poverty by 2020.
Leader of Child Poverty Action Group Alison Garnham said: "There's no getting away from the plain fact that if child poverty is rising as a result of government policies then it's a rethink of government decisions not definitions that's needed.
"The projected rises in child poverty over the next few years, after a decade in which the UK's child poverty reductions were the largest in the OECD, are terrifying for anyone who has a heart for children or a head for the nation's finances."
She called on ministers to "moving heaven and earth to protect children from cuts and prevent child poverty happening in the first place," rather than spending £25 billion every year from the social and economic fallout of child poverty.
Barnardo's chief executive Anne Marie Carrie said the government should continue to measure income and not lose sight of the action needed to improve children's lives.
"Debating how child poverty is measured must not distract from the urgent need for action to improve the life chances of children currently growing up in families that are languishing below the breadline."
Launching a consultation on the plans at Clyde Children's Centre in Deptford Mr Duncan Smith said money "matters" but insisted it was not "absolutely representative of a child's life chances."
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