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Key and English at odds on eve of Budget

27 May 2009 Media Statement

Key and English at odds on eve of Budget

New Zealanders looking for direction, urgency and action on the jobs front from tomorrow’s budget must be alarmed at the lack of unity between John Key and his deputy Bill English, Labour Leader Phil Goff says.

“Once again the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister are at odds with each other, saying opposite things. They obviously don’t talk,” Phil Goff said.

“John Key has confirmed he wants the primary focus of the budget to be avoiding a credit rating downgrade, but his deputy disagrees.

“Who is really running the show? It’s absolutely astonishing that the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister are at odds on the eve of a budget that has already gone to the printer.

“This is the fourth occasion that the Prime Minister and his allegedly loyal deputy have publicly clashed.

“They disagreed over a Fisher and Paykel bailout, they disagreed over John Key’s cycleway, they disagreed about whether the economy would come out of the downturn ‘aggressively’, and today they disagree over the primary focus of the budget.

“How can New Zealand businesses and hardworking Kiwis have confidence in a government where its two principal players don’t talk and don’t agree on the direction that financial management of this country is going?” Phil Goff says.

“In a week when more than 1250 New Zealanders joined the dole queues, the focus of this budget needs to be on jobs. The tragedy for New Zealanders is that Mr Key and Mr English have no agreed focus on anything.”

ENDS

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