Families will be paying £2,600 [approximately $5,200] more tax every year under Labour plans contained in the pre-budget report, a leading economic think tank says.
Alistair Darling's proposals had been billed as offering tax cuts to millions with an eye-catching announcement that the inheritance tax threshold would be doubled for couples.
But those claims began to unravel after analysis by the Institute of Fiscal Studies showed that by 2012 millions of households will be facing an annual tax bill of more than £20,000, an increase of around £50 a week.
The revelation has echoes of Gordon Brown's final budget as Chancellor last March when his pledge to cut income tax masked a series of proposals that saw many middle class families facing higher bills.
....George Osborne, the shadow chancellor, said: "The Chancellor said the budget represented a tax cut. But independent experts now find that there is a £50 a week tax bombshell for families. This shows just how cynical and calculating Gordon Brown's government has become."
....The revelations came as Mr Brown endured a torrid afternoon in the Commons at the hands of David Cameron, who taunted him for being a "phoney".