21 November 1999
Nothing fair about Labour's plans
National stands by its record on fairness, Treasurer Bill English said today.
"Helen Clark's attack today on National's record is a sloppy attempt to rewrite history and make Labour's insipid
policy positions look stronger than they are. Ms Clark needs to do better than ape a few Tony Blair slogans.
"National has given ordinary hard-working New Zealand families a bigger share through lower taxes and child tax
"As a result of National's sound economic management a family with three children pays no net income tax until they
earn nearly $31,000. This is because their child tax credits exceed their PAYE.
"A family on $35,000 with three young children is $118 a week better off than three years ago because of lower taxes
flowing from a strong economy.
"These low and middle income families would have no prospect of improving their incomes under Labour. That's unfair. In
fact, Labour has announced it intends to deny these families the income that will flow from National's tax cuts. Ms
Clark's message to them is that they "frittered away" the tax cuts and they're not working hard enough.
"National pays the accommodation supplement to subsidise the rents of 319,000 New Zealand families on benefits and in
work. How does Ms Clark explain to people in lower-paid work that she wants every beneficiary in a state house to be a
better off than them by staying home. And how does Helen Clark tell two struggling families that Labour cares about the
one with the state house but not the family with the private landlord? National's housing policy is fair, Labour's
"National has given parents a fair go at influencing the education of their children. How fair is it to hard-working
parents on school boards of trustees to be told that all decisions about their children are now going to be made by the
unions and the Minister?
"Labour's policy of offering thousands of dollars of interest-free money to 17-year-olds isn't so much unfair as
"National wants to help every business by reducing their taxes and saving them $200 million on ACC. Labour's policy is
to make sure every business suffers by winding back ACC and instead dishing out a few million dollars in grants. How can
that be fair?
"National stands strongly by its record on fairness.
"Labour is following up its dishonest ads and digitally enhanced posters with an attempt to rewrite history. In fact
Labour's policy are about envy, division and favouritism," said Mr English.