Economy 2 April 2013 Could you live on £53 a week? How Cameron and Osborne responded Iain Duncan Smith's cabinet colleagues have chosen not to match his boast that he could live on £53 a week. Sign up for our weekly email * Print HTML Iain Duncan Smith's declaration on yesterday's Today programme that he could live on £53 a week ("If I had to, I would") has inevitably prompted journalists to ask his ministerial colleagues whether they could match the Work and Pensions Secretary's frugality. Below is how they've so far responded; I'll update the list as more answers come in. In the meantime, the petition urging IDS to "prove his claim" has now garnered 218,030 signatures. Iain Duncan Smith "If I had to, I would." David Cameron A Downing Street spokesman said: "The Prime Minister, like the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, feels that benefit levels are fair." George Osborne "I don’t think it's sensible to reduce this to a debate about one individual's personal circumstances. This debate is not about any individual." Greg Clark (Financial Secretary to the Treasury) "I think it’s an incredible struggle to do that and I think any MP, anyone earning the comfortable wage that an MP has would certainly struggle. "I think the context is this – we’re all having to tighten our belts…right across the board there are difficult choices to be made, it is an incredibly difficult situation." › Are schools really expelling 15 "sex bullies" a day? Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith said if he "had to" live on £53 a week he "would". Photograph: Getty Images. George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman. Subscribe from just £1 per issue More Related articles Should the UK get militarily involved in Syria? Theresa May knows she's talking nonsense - here's why she's doing it How worried are Labour MPs about losing their seats?