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Labour-Alliance Bullying Critics

Media Statement by

Hon Tony Ryall

Minister for State Owned Enterprises

30 June 1999

Labour-Alliance are shooting the messenger instead of tackling the message in abusing the Employers Federation, says State Owned Enterprises Minister, Tony Ryall.

Dr Cullen and Mr Anderton are intent on bullying their critics into silence. Both accuse the Employers Federation of being "National Party cheerleaders," in a bid to silence business criticism of Labour-Alliance's high tax, pro-union and hard line ACC policies.

"Rather than argue the case, Dr Cullen shoots the messenger by accusing the Federation of personal agendas and manipulation of the facts.

"Yet there's no criticism of the Left's own cheerleaders, the Labour-Alliance poodles known as the union movement. Here is a group of people publicly aligned to Labour-Alliance and paying monies into party coffers. They constantly praise the Labour-Alliance bloc and the media unquestioningly run their angle.

"At least the Employers Federation is a non-aligned organisation, not funding any political party.

"The Federation has recently criticised National on IRD electronic filing, the Budget, tax relief and the ACC tail. Hardly the record of a National Party poodle.

"Cullen and Anderton are using the remote possibility of a Labour-Alliance government and its attitude to business as a tool to stop pre-election criticism. These bully-boy tactics may work on the media, but I hope they won't work on the voice of business," said Mr Ryall.

ENDS

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