National’s release of Budget details shows the two major parties are virtually identical when it comes to tax and spending, ACT Leader David Seymour says.

“National rightly points out that the Wellbeing Budget is all spin and no substance, with the corollary being that Labour and the Nats aren’t much different from each other.

“Budget 2019 appears to continue National’s approach of taking one in every three dollars in tax and blowing billions in poor-quality spending.

“For 20 years, National and Labour governments have played a game of taxing productive New Zealanders in order to bribe various groups. That isn’t a recipe for an aspirational country or a successful economy, and the results have been predictably mediocre.

“Over the past 18 months, National and the Government have been joined at the hip on vacuous child poverty legislation, the damaging Zero Carbon Bill, rushed gun law reform, and restrictions on freedom of expression.

“It has fallen to ACT to provide the opposition to Jacinda Ardern’s Government.

“On tax and spending, ACT also has a distinct plan: get poor-quality spending under control and let New Zealand taxpayers keep much more of what they earn.

“ACT would end Fees-Free and other middle-class welfare. The Provincial Growth Fund and other corporate welfare would be gone. ACT would also gradually raise the retirement age to 67 to reflect the fact people are living and working longer.

“Low, flat taxes and better quality spending really would improve New Zealanders’ wellbeing.”