John Key

Key “plummets” says Newshub…really? Since when has 1.8% been a plummet?

Newshub are pushing out their latest poll:

National though is steady on 47 percent on the poll — a drop of just 0.3 percent — and similar to the Election night result.

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However, National and its support partners would not be able to put together a government — they would need the support of Winston Peters.

Mr Peters would once again be Kingmaker — if he sided with Labour and the Greens, they would become the Government.

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Knock me down with a feather, Soper gets something right

More evidence has emerged that the Media party have had enough of Andrew Little.

Barry Soper, who lives in a world with pink skies and goes through life wearing red tinted glasses is the latest to “turn” on Little.

Being in political opposition isn’t where anyone wants to be. It has often been said that being the opposition leader in New Zealand politics is the toughest job on the block.

Certainly that was the view of Helen Clark, who on a trip back from the Big Apple a couple of years back, lamented she was on the outside looking in for six years before the Beehive’s ninth floor door opened to her.

By contrast, John Key had just two years banging his head against a brick wall before assuming the top political job. Andrew Little’s hoping to pull it off after three years of tyre kicking.

And that’s what being in opposition is, kicking tyres, hoping they’re attached to a vehicle that the public feels comfortable going along for the ride in. But if Little thinks there’ll be a warrant of fitness for the current housing woes in this Thursday’s Budget – which he believes there should be otherwise it’s a failure – then he’s on a road to nowhere.

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Grant Robertson knows what’s in the government’s budget (clue: nope)

Grant Robertson knows as much about finance as Jacinda Ardern knows about raising children.

Both have spouted off in the past couple of days but Robbo has declared that Labour will fight the next election with the promise of a tax working group.

The Government’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce, Labour’s finance spokesman Grant Robertson says.

Mr Robertson is accusing the Government of making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts, but failing to include them in the Budget.

“We are not as a country in a position to be offering tax cuts when there are families living in cars and garages,” Mr Robertson said in a pre-Budget speech in Wellington today.

“I have a specific challenge to John Key and Bill English when it comes to tax cuts – if you really believe they are the right thing to do for New Zealand, cost them properly and put them into Budget 2017, rather than dangling them about in an election campaign as a promise from Neverland.”  Read more »

So many promises, but no way of paying for them

Andrew Little has made so many promises, but hasn’t told us how he intends paying for them.

Labour leader Andrew Little has used a pre-Budget speech to accuse National of neglecting ‘middle New Zealand’ and promised a Labour government would do more for housing affordability and health.

There were no new policy announcements in Mr Little’s speech, which focused mainly on criticising National’s record and accused it of favouring “the few at the very top.”

Mr Little said if Labour was in charge of this year’s Budget it would invest heavily in new infrastructure to kick kickstart the economy.

“And to help everyone succeed, the Government I lead will address the real causes of the housing crisis.” He said Housing Minister Nick Smith was “flailing round with gimmicks” such as special housing areas and releasing Crown land for housing.

“We can’t keep going like this. If we do, we’re going to be left with a country where home ownership becomes the privilege of just a very lucky few rather than a birth right for most Kiwis.” He said restoring widespread homeownership should be a priority and listed Labour’s plans to ban overseas buyers buying a house unless it was a new build.   Read more »

Hands up who wants a tax cuts election?

Peter Wilson at NZ Newswire thinks that next year will be a tax cuts election.

Amid confusing statements from the government one thing is clear – National will campaign on tax cuts in next year’s election, says NZ Newswire’s political writer Peter Wilson.

The cuts will either have been announced in the 2017 budget, coming into effect in April 2018, or there will be a firm promise that they’ll be in the 2018 budget.

Those are safe predictions, unless there’s another international financial meltdown.

On Thursday last week, Finance Minister Bill English put them on the back burner.

Here’s what he said: “We don’t currently have an explicit provision for tax reduction in the fiscal forecasts.

“At this point, we’ve prioritised additional debt repayment over setting aside money in budget 2017 for tax cuts.

“However, we are still committed to cutting personal taxes over time, and will consider these – either in budget 2017 or after – as and when the fiscal situation improves.”

By saying they could be considered in budget 2017, he meant that by then he might be in a position to announce his future plans.

On Monday this week Prime Minister John Key said tax cuts could be in the 2017 budget, but he didn’t seem to think they would be.   Read more »

Harman view on National’s conferences

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This weekend sees the last of National’s regional party conferences.

Over the past three weeks, hundreds of party members have met in Hamilton, Auckland and Wanaka and will meet on Saturday in Palmerston North.

The conferences are mostly morale boosters for them but there are also sessions which they close to the media on the practical techniques they need to employ to win next year.

So how do they do it?

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Looks like Dotcom admitted he is a crook

Kim Dotcom thought he was being funny yesterday, but appears to have shot himself in the foot again, and Pete helpfully assisted the fool aim at his feet:

2016-05-15So it appears that Kim Dotcom has admitted he is a crook.   Read more »

The PM is right, there is help out there

The PM has told those people whinging to the Media party about their housing predicament to go see aid agencies, like WINZ.

Prime Minister John Key has advised those who are homeless or living in garages to go and see Work and Income.

His comments come after social housing groups and community workers have called on the government to increase their supply of affordable housing.

There have been reports families in Auckland have been forced to rent garages and shipping containers, with the Salvation Army estimating one in ten Auckland garages is rented out to a family.

Social agencies say the number of families living out of their cars has grown.

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Key wants Brownlee to tackle him – finally a fit for Front-Row-Gerry’s natural assets

Gerry and Amy

Gerry Brownlee has just been appointed perhaps his important job yet — keeping the wise-cracking Prime Minister out of trouble.

John Key was thrown out of Parliament last week after talking over Speaker David Carter, who had stood up.

“I was actually thinking I was being so amusing and so engrossed in my own answer, I didn’t see the Speaker,” Mr Key told Paul Henry this morning. “It wasn’t deliberate.”

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I don’t want hints John, I want cuts

After Bill English cancelled promised tax cuts the PM is now making hints of tax cuts in election year.

Prime Minister John Key has signalled National will campaign in 2017 on a $3 billion package of tax cuts.

Last week Finance Minister Bill English ruled out offering tax cuts in this year’s Budget and said it was not currently in the plan for the 2017 Budget either, although that could alter.

Speaking to Mike Hosking on Newstalk ZB this morning, Mr Key said tax cuts had been ruled out in the short term because it was a choice of spending $1 billion on tax cuts “to deliver very small amounts” or spending that money on healthcare and other areas.

However, he signalled National was working on a more substantial package of cuts for 2017. “We are not ruling that out for 2017 or campaigning on it for a fourth term in 2017, but having a bigger one, to be blunt, than $1 billion.” Asked how much was needed to deliver meaningful tax cuts, he said: “$3 billion, I reckon.”

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