Release: National’s plan means more cuts, more kids in poverty

National’s fiscal plan has failed to fill the massive fiscal hole in its dodgy tax scheme, it will mean more cuts to public services, more children being put into poverty and an end to action on climate change.

“National’s fiscal plan was the opportunity for Nicola Willis to acknowledge what almost every commentator is saying: National’s tax promises don’t add up. Instead, she has doubled down on the $2 billion hole in her foreign buyer plan and is using it to prop up the overall fiscal plan,” Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson said.

“This means even deeper cuts to public services which will inevitably extend into areas like Health, Education and Housing.

“To make matters worse, National have tried to make their numbers add up by cutting benefits to the tune of $2 billion. This will push more children into poverty.

“The Children’s Commissioner said that indexing benefits to wage growth as Labour has done was the best thing a Government could do to reduce child poverty. The inverse is true; the worst thing that National could do is take that away, and today they have done that.

“In a cost-of-living crisis it is morally wrong to put more kids in poverty to pay for the tax cuts of millionaires and property speculators.

“Christopher Luxon’s plan takes even more from people dealing with cost-of-living pressures with free prescriptions and access cheaper public transport fares gone. People will also miss out on free dental under National.

“National’s plan also means an end to funding for climate action. They are using the funding needed to help reduce emissions to prop up their flailing tax cuts promises. Future generations of New Zealanders need so much better than that.

“The big winners today were the wealthiest Kiwis and property investors, who would get hundreds of millions of dollars in tax cuts under National at the expense of investment in health, education and social housing.

“This is highlighted by the fact National are proposing an ongoing tax cut for property investors every year and won’t build any new social housing beyond 2025. If these are the values Christopher Luxon wants to run this country with then Kiwis will see that for what it is: for the few, not the many.

“We will now go through National’s numbers with a fine toothcomb, given their track record of creating fiscal holes. There is a strong feeling of smoke and mirrors already.

“National’s so-called ‘buffer’ has actually been made to look bigger by including an additional year of Budget allowances than Labour’s Fiscal Plan. Using their approach, the “buffer” – or remaining unallocated money – is actually smaller than the amount of money Labour will have available to meet cost pressures in the coming term of Government.

“New Zealanders deserve better from Christopher Luxon and Nicola Willis than saying ‘trust us, we know numbers’. Christopher Luxon is showing a level of arrogance not seen in New Zealand politics for generations. It’s like Eddie Jones saying, ‘I know rugby so I will win the World Cup’,” Grant Robertson said.

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