Campaigners criticised Tory grandee William Hague after he labelled the pension triple lock “unsustainable”.
Lord Hague’s comments sparked fury among charities, who said older people are struggling with food and energy bills.
It comes after the former Labour Home Secretary Lord Blunkett said the older generation would need to pay its “fair share”.
Lord Hague, a close ally of Rishi Sunak, had said: “I would not expect at the coming election the political parties to say they’re going to do away with the triple lock but it is unsustainable over time.”
Dennis Reed, director of over-60s campaign group Silver Voices, said: “These drip-drip-drip attacks on the triple lock are intolerable and very stressful and debilitating for older people struggling with rocketing food and energy prices.
“Older statesmen like Lords Hague and Blunkett should know better than to court headlines in this way.”
Jan Shortt, general secretary of the National Pensioners Convention, said: “There are those in our government who want to get rid of the lock completely, exposing many more of us to hardship.
“Time for them to stop stressing older people out with the threat of axing the triple lock, and start engaging in genuine debate on pensions.” The triple lock refers to the scheme where the state pension rises in line with the highest of three measures every year – a flat 2½ percent, average earnings growth or inflation.
The Daily Express has championed calls for the Government to maintain the triple lock to protect older people.
Last night, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “There are no plans to alter the triple lock.”