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Look for savage ‘father of all budgets’ in 2010

26 November 2009 Media Statement

Look for savage ‘father of all budgets’ in 2010


Hard-working Kiwis who are already struggling to make ends meet under a National government that has no economic plan or ideas should be afraid of what lies ahead in Budget 2010, says Labour Finance spokesperson David Cunliffe.

“The message to Kiwis from Finance Minister Bill English is becoming clearer every day --- expect the ‘Father of all Budgets’ that will make savage cuts to ACC, education and health,” David Cunliffe said. “The ghost of Ruth Richardson’s 1991 Budget, which left thousands of Kiwis unemployed or unsupported, is stalking the halls of the Beehive.

“Kiwis should be alarmed by Mr English’s preview today of the Government’s Half-Year Economic and Fiscal Update which will be released on 15 December.

“It is meaningless to compare the nominal growth in spending, but to ignore the growth in the economy. During Labour's time in government, we experienced some of the highest GDP growth in the OECD. Not only was government spending in line with GDP growth, but Labour also managed to run fiscal surpluses and bring net debt down to near zero percent of GDP,” David Cunliffe said.

“If we had listened to Bill English then and given expensive tax cuts, New Zealand’s books would be in a far worse state today.

“It is a bit rich for Mr English to talk about rampant spending when his government has just added $110 billion to the bill Kiwis face for the ETS. National has put a large liability on its carbon credit card for our young people to pay.

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“National has made it plain it is not worried about the struggle thousands of Kiwis face to make ends meet, let alone have a few dollars left over at the end of the week, and nor is it worried that the next generation will be worse off than today’s,” David Cunliffe said.

“In the past financial year alone, according to the Statistics Department, weekly rents have increased 9.5 percent or $21 a week, paying the mortgage or rent each week takes over a third of total household income, and almost half (49 percent) of all households say they don't have enough or have just enough income to meet everyday needs such as accommodation, food, and clothing.

“Over the next few weeks there will be a host of reports back from groups like the tax working group and Don Brash’s 2025 Taskforce. National has no ideas of its own, but it has turned to the failed far right gurus of the 1990s, people like Don Brash and Murray Horn, for inspiration. With that sort of help to resurrect the failed policies of the past, Kiwis should be very afraid.”

ENDS

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