Conservatives in humiliating 'dementia tax' U-turn after Google ad criticism

Dealers working on the IG Group trading floor in London

Dealers working on the IG Group trading floor in London

Mrs May came under intense pressure over social care following the launch last Thursday of the Conservative manifesto, which included plans to include the value of individuals' homes when calculating how much they must pay towards the cost of care in their own home, as is now the case for residential care.

According to the YouGov poll, the Tories have lost five points since announcing that more pensioners will have to pay for care at home and only £100,000 (US$130,000) of a pensioner's wealth will be protected from care costs. It had been increasingly referred to as a "dementia tax".

"We will make sure nobody has to sell their family home to pay for care", May said in the Welsh city of Wrexham. This manifesto says that we will come forward with a consultation paper, a government green paper and that consultation will include an absolute limit on the amount people have to pay for their care costs.

May called the election to strengthen her hand in negotiations on Britain's departure from the European Union and win more time to deal with the impact of the divorce.

The U-turn is only partial: The plan to begin charging elderly people for care within their homes will remain in the plans, Sky News reports.

"This unbelievable volte face really does leave the Conservatives line about being "strong and stable" in tatters - it shows a wobbly Theresa May and a weak government".

"Not satisfied with plunging our social care system into crisis, Theresa May's nasty party has promised more attacks on older people", he said at a rally.

Britain's pound edged lower after the polls showed May's lead had fallen, trading down 0.2 percent against the dollar and flirting with a fall back below $1.30.

Unsurprisingly, given the "strong and stable" slogan adopted by the Tory leader, her opponents have seized on the uncertainty created by the policy.

The former chancellor George Osborne, now Evening Standard editor, was first to suggest Mrs May's team was preparing for a u-turn on the policy.

The about-turn, which came 24 hours after ministers were insisting the policy would not be altered, led to accusations that the Tory general election campaign was in chaos.

Pressure has mounted on the Conservatives following their manifesto being published on Thursday, with weekend polls showing their considerable lead over Labour narrowing.

The Financial Times reported on Monday that May had not consulted some of her most senior colleagues on the plans announced last week, and that the head of her policy unit had advised against it.

May had been on course for a landslide with a majority of up to 150 seats, opinion polls had indicated in the early stages of campaigning ahead of the June 8 national vote.

In what is arguably the biggest U-turn of all, Mrs May said in the leadership campaign after David Cameron's departure that she believed "Brexit means Brexit". With the one percent fall in their support and five percent added to Labour's it does mean that the Conservative lead has been slashed by six percent.

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