Bill English

More good news

money in your back pocket

Hamish Rutherford is another reporter piling on more good news prior to the election

Average annual wages are expected to rise by $7500 over the next four years, Finance Minister Bill English says.

In a speech to the Wellington Employers’ Chamber of Commerce this afternoon English said average wages would rise to $62,200 by 2018 “if New Zealand achieves its economic growth forecasts”.

The increase amounts to $1875 a year, or a little over $5 a day.

“We’d like it to be better, that’s for sure, and we’ve been working hard to make it better,” English said.   Read more »

The most boring Budget ever?

Credit:  Emmerson

Credit: Emmerson

We’ve already been told not to expect anything drastic.  Another steady-as-she-goes budget from Bill English is on the way.

Some would argue that it is yet another opportunity let slip for genuine reform, but while National has a death grip on the center left voter by essentially perpetuating most of the Helen Clark social services, health and education frameworks, the ‘don’t scare the horses’ approach looks like a 3rd term winner for National.

Finance Minister Bill English is about to present a preview of his May 15 Budget.   Read more »

Sledge of the Day: Parker loses the plot and Bill English nails him

David Parker went on a wonky jihad yesterday in parliament attempting to re-litigate the 1975 election and superannuation and got dealt to by Bill English.

Read more »

Danyl on the latest polls and where the trend is going

Danyl McLauchlan maintains a poll of polls with a bias corrected and non-bias corrected version. Both are showing the same thing.

Bias corrected aggregated poll of polls below. Non-bias corrected graph here.


Safe to say that Cunliffe isn’t working out as Labour leader. He’s losing voters to National and he’s also trending down in the preferred Prime Minister rating.


I wonder what David Shearer thinks when he looks at the gap between National and Labour since the election? At the time I thought ditching Shearer was the right thing to do, but its starting to look like it was a horrible, horrible mistake.  Read more »

Cartoon of the Day

Credit: SonovaMin

Credit: SonovaMin

Two bad polls for Labour, Cunliffe has zero traction


One News and 3 News both had polls tonight. Both polls show that David Cunliffe is failing as Labour leader and is now plumbing the depths that Bill English charted when he was leader of National.

English debuted as leader around 14% and slowly slid into insignificance. David Cunliffe is the same. He must now be under real pressure both from his caucus and his members. It is telling that like his caucus, just one third of Labour voters prefer him as PM. In the OneNews/Colmar Brunton he is on 8% and in the 3News/Reid Research he is on 9%, well below the worst results David Shearer ever produced.

Labour’s smear campaign against Judith Collins and Hekia Parata have failed demonstrably along with their stupid crony capitalism campaign.They should give it up, it hasn’t worked at all.

As for their vaunted forestry policy, that has gone down with voters like a cup of cold sick. Instead of launching a policy for a few elite forest owners they should have been talking policy idea that resonate with middle NZ but they haven’t, instead talking over their heads.

All the game changers they’ve announced have indeed changed the game…in favour of John Key and the National party.  Read more »

John should have listened to Whaleoil


Just because John and I talk doesn’t mean he listens.   But perhaps he now rues ignoring the clear signals that Parata’s trail of destruction wasn’t going to end when he stuck her in the back office after a string of public embarrassments over school closures, and then had Steve Joyce front the Novopay debacle.

And unlike Judith Collins, who has the people’s respect, Parata’s dog tucker.   Read more »

Labour and Cunliffe’s problem with the Ladies

Jadis posted yesterday at Farrar’s travel, fitness, lifestyle and arts blog about the problem that Labour and David Cunliffe have with the ladies.

Cunliffe’s Labour has a problem with women.  This week’s Herald-Digipoll highlighted that Labour is losing support from women.  The reasons for loss of support aren’t simple.  And while much of the support is crossing the aisle to National, it is also redistributing itself to the Greens.

But why is Labour losing the female vote?

  • Is it the way that Cunliffe appears smarmy and a little creepy when he talks to camera or uses rehearsed lines?
  • Is it because Cunliffe pretends he is ‘middle New Zealand’ while living in a multi-million dollar house with a combined family income over $500K?
  • Is it because Cunliffe patronises women with his suggestion that he bought the multi-million dollar house so that his wife could pop home to breastfeed?*

Sure, all those perception issues matter but I think we need to unpack a little more.  Some of Cunliffe’s policy is also turning women off.

Perception is reality and the NZ Herald/Digipoll clearly shows Labour’s problem with the ladies.  Read more »

Winston Peters and his own conflicts of interest, Ctd


Over the coming weeks Winston Peters will look more like this as the true details about Kim Dotcom are released.

Yesterday I wrote about Winston Peters and his parliamentary questions on behalf of his partner and the firm she worked for at the time.

I also wrote earlier about Winston Peters and his three visits to the Dotcom Mansion. At the time I also mentioned that there was more to  come on this.

On the three occasions that Winston Peters had admitted visiting the Dotcom Mansion there were many things that were discussed.

Perhaps the biggest thing though was what Dotcom claims he knows about John key and what John Key knows.

Winston Peters constantly goes on about this hinting at coming destruction at his hands by the release of information that could only have come from Dotcom.

Sources inside the Dotcom mansion tell me that Dotcom sat down and essentially dictated the questions that needed to be asked in parliament and on one occasion sat and watched with glee as Winston Peters asked the very same questions in parliament.

Winston Peters now has some very clear questions that need to be answered about his political association with Kim Dotcom and why he asked those questions on behalf of Dotcom and whether or not there was any consideration given.

Here is an outline of all the questions asked by Winston Peters regarding Kim Dotcom.

Written Questions:

8031 (2012). Rt Hon Winston Peters to the Minister Responsible for the GCSB (28 Sep 2012): What briefings, reports and correspondence did he receive in his capacity as Minister in the period 16 December 2011-20 January; listed by date and source?

Rt Hon John Key (Minister Responsible for the GCSB) replied: I refer the Member to my answer to Question No. 07970 (2012)

8060 (2012). Rt Hon Winston Peters to the Minister Responsible for the GCSB (28 Sep 2012): How many interception warrants has he issued under Section 17 of the Government Communications Security Bureau Act, by year, since 2010?

Rt Hon John Key (Minister Responsible for the GCSB) replied: It is my practice to not comment on such matters.

8118 (2012). Rt Hon Winston Peters to the Minister Responsible for the GCSB (28 Sep 2012): What briefings, reports and correspondence from departmental sources did he receive in his capacity as Minister on 13 September 2012; listed by title, date and source?

Rt Hon John Key (Minister Responsible for the GCSB) replied: I refer the Member to my answer to Question No. 07970 (2012)

8127 (2012). Rt Hon Winston Peters to the Minister Responsible for the GCSB (28 Sep 2012): When did he, or any of his represenatives, first learn of Kim Schmitz in his capacity as Minister?  Read more »

Hooton on the addled thinking of Winston Peters

Matthew Hooton has no love for Winston Peters…once calling him a word that is no longer used on this blog, on television.

He writes in the NBR about what it is that Winston Peters may or may not want.

The left is in despair.

Eminent left-wing scribe Chris Trotter says the election is “all over bar the counting.”  He fears a collapse in both turnout and Labour’s support, humiliating David Cunliffe and resulting in an “unparalleled National victory” for John Key.

From his comrades’ perspective, he is undoubtedly too curmudgeonly.

With the exception of 1999, all MMP elections have gone to the wire.

Even in the weeks before Bill English’s nadir in 2002, there was a mathematical possibility of a National/NZ First/UnitedFuture/Act coalition, limiting Helen Clark to one term.

In 2005, National’s Don Brash, along with the leaders of Act, UnitedFuture and the Maori Party, held talks with Winston Peters about forming a government but Mr Peters chose to give Ms Clark her third term.

More recently, Mr Key scraped home in both 2008 and 2011 by the narrowest of margins.

If Ms Clark hadn’t so slavishly backed Mr Peters through the 2008 Spencer Trust fiasco, she would have won a fourth term.

Similarly, only the go-slow by Mr Cunliffe and his supporters in the last weeks of the 2011 campaign stopped Phil Goff from making Mr Key a one-term prime minister.

If unemployment stays higher than forecast, wage rises are a bit lower, doubts emerge over the fiscal surplus and the official cash rate is closer to 4% than 3% in September, then the gap between National/Act/UnitedFuture and Labour/Green/Mana will narrow.  Mr Peters will again decide who will be prime minister.  Read more »