Public pressure comes up trumps

The Government had no choice but to back away from plans to throw taxpayer money at SkyCity given New Zealanders’ overwhelming opposition to it, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.

 “SkyCity are the ones who have suckered the Government.

“This is about SkyCity's bottom line, not the Government’s.

“Its decision to drop its bid for taxpayer funding has nothing to do with John Key and Steven Joyce playing hard ball. It has everything to do with the stitch-up they did with the casino giant from day one.

“On the one hand they have been telling us that throwing taxpayer cash at the convention centre was the least preferred option, and on the other they have bent over backwards to please with several very generous concessions.

“The public’s distaste for the deal is clearly demonstrated by the fact almost 28,000 Kiwis signed Labour’s petition demanding no taxpayers’ money be used to prop up the casino in just a few days.

 “What part of ‘not a cent’ did John Key not understand? He and Steven Joyce dug their own hole. They have attempted to soften the public up for months, now they have been forced to back down,” Andrew Little said.