• Labour has ‘backdated’ its tuition fee policy in a bid to mobilise student voters
  • Huge sweetener comes on last day for registering to vote in election on June 8
  • But Tories point out the move is not funded for this year and would cost £7.5bn  

James Tapsfield, Political Editor For Mailonline

Labour was accused of fantasy figures today after offering students a £7.5billion bribe ahead of the election.

The party has pledged to ‘back-date’ its policy of scrapping tuition fees so it benefits those preparing to study this Autumn.

The huge sweetener comes on the last day for registering to vote on June 8. Labour is trying to tap into a group that has previously been less likely to exercise their democratic rights.

But the Tories pointed out that the measure was not costed in the party’s manifesto, accusing Jeremy Corbyn of making ‘unfunded pledges knowing they can’t deliver them without hurting those most in need’.

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured with Lord Prescott in Hull today, has been narrowing the gap on the Tories in the polls - although Theresa May is still on track for a solid majority

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured with Lord Prescott in Hull today, has been narrowing the gap on the Tories in the polls - although Theresa May is still on track for a solid majority

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured with Lord Prescott in Hull today, has been narrowing the gap on the Tories in the polls – although Theresa May is still on track for a solid majority

Former deputy PM Lord Prescott joined Jeremy Corbyn on the campaign trail in Hull today

Former deputy PM Lord Prescott joined Jeremy Corbyn on the campaign trail in Hull today

Former deputy PM Lord Prescott joined Jeremy Corbyn on the campaign trail in Hull today

Unveiling the promise today, Mr Corbyn said he wanted to ‘lift this cloud of debt’ by making it free for people to study at university in England.

Labour estimates its policy to scrap tuition fees could benefit around 400,000 students from this autumn if numbers remain unchanged.

The party says it would abolish fees from 2018 and write-off the first year of fees for those planning to start university this September, while those part way through their degree will pay no further fees for the remainder of the course.

SHADOW MINISTER’S ‘POSH’ JIBE AT PM 

Angela Rayner jibed that she was not 'posh' enough to dine with Theresa May

Angela Rayner jibed that she was not 'posh' enough to dine with Theresa May

Angela Rayner jibed that she was not ‘posh’ enough to dine with Theresa May

A Labour frontbencher has accused Theresa May of ‘sneering’ at her in the House of Commons.

Angela Rayner said she was not surprised she did not feature among the PM’s dream dinner guests as she was not ‘posh enough’.

Mrs May revealed her fantasy guest list for in an interview at the weekend, including crime writer Agatha Christie.

Asked if she was disappointed not to be on the list, Ms Rayner told Sky News: ‘Theresa May often looks at me and sneers when I see her opposite the despatch box, so I’m not surprised she wouldn’t want me at her dinner party, to be honest.

‘I’m probably not posh enough.’ 

Labour adds it would seek to provide free tuition for EU students and would seek reciprocal arrangements at EU universities as part of Brexit talks.

Mr Corbyn said: ‘We will scrap tuition fees and ensure universities have the resources they need to continue to provide a world-class education.

‘Students will benefit from having more money in their pockets, and we will all benefit from the engineers, doctors, teachers and scientists that our universities produce.’ 

But the Tories said the massive corporation tax hike that is meant to pay for the £11billion-a-year plan to scrap tuition fees could not be put into effect until next year.

Education Secretary Justine Greening said: ‘This is yet another shambles from Jeremy Corbyn who wants to lead the Brexit negotiations in just two weeks’ time.

‘Corbyn has promised that tuition fees will be abolished this year but he hasn’t got the money to pay for it. That would mean he’d rack up more debt or raid the higher education budget.

‘As ever Corbyn’s figures don’t add up and his shadow cabinet can’t explain where the money would come from. They are making unfunded pledges knowing they can’t deliver them without hurting those most in need.’

Anyone hoping to have their say at the ballot box on June 8 must apply to register to vote by 11.59pm tonight.

Electoral Commission data shows more than two million people have applied to register to vote since Prime Minister Theresa May announced on April 18 her intention to call a snap election.

Theresa May, pictured launching the Welsh Tory manifesto today, said she would take the tough decisions if reelected on June 8

Theresa May, pictured launching the Welsh Tory manifesto today, said she would take the tough decisions if reelected on June 8

Theresa May, pictured launching the Welsh Tory manifesto today, said she would take the tough decisions if reelected on June 8

Education Secretary Justine Greening accused Labour of making 'unfunded pledges knowing they can't deliver them without hurting those most in need'

Education Secretary Justine Greening accused Labour of making 'unfunded pledges knowing they can't deliver them without hurting those most in need'

Education Secretary Justine Greening accused Labour of making ‘unfunded pledges knowing they can’t deliver them without hurting those most in need’

The Higher Education Policy Institute said axing tuition fees would make universities vulnerable to budget cuts as they will be at the mercy of the Chancellor.

Nick Hillman, director of the think-tank, said: ‘Something has to give. It could be student numbers, it could be facilities, it could be contact hours or it could be all of them to some degree.’

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