“Labour’s Build Back Broke Budget will mean a blowout for the government’s books as it tries to buy the election”, says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“The Government promised to be back in surplus after five years. Now they’re delivering six years of deficits, and next year they’ll spend $7.6 billion more than they take in. That sort of deficit spending is rocket fuel for inflation.

“They’ll blame the cyclone, they’ll blame COVID-19, they’ll blame the Russians. They’ll blame everyone but themselves. The truth is that only $1 billion of their $7 billion blowout is for cyclone recovery. Oil prices are lower than before the war. COVID-19 is officially over. The common denominator in big spending is Grant Robertson.

“This is fiscal incontinence on a previously unimaginable scale. When the history books are written about Grant Robertson they’ll say, ‘He came, he borrowed, he bankrupted us all.’

“We can understand why Labour would like to get rid of prescription charges and let kids ride public transport for free, but all of that is going to be eaten up by inflation driven by out-of-control government spending.

“Blowing out spending will blowout inflation which will blowout household budgets. It’s as simple as that.

“Labour’s out-of-control spending now means higher taxes, higher inflation, and higher interest rates tomorrow. Future generations will be building back broke.

“Government spending next year will be 79 per cent higher – or $137 billion – than when Labour entered government. Grant Robertson has managed to spin this as a ‘conservative’ budget, but he is spending more than any Finance Minister in New Zealand’s history.

“The two major parties are differentiated only by logos. National says there’s waste in Wellington, but it can’t say what is wasted. ACT is providing the real choice for real change.

“Our Alternative Budget, A Time For Truth, would cut $38 billion in spending over four years, without touching frontline services, and let people keep more of what they earn with a two-rate tax system – 17.5 and 28 per cent. If you’re a nurse on $70,000, our tax cuts let you keep $2,500 more a year.

“We need to stop the borrowing to reduce inflation and interest rates, so we don’t end up with 10 per cent mortgage rates.

“Labour and National’s rhetorical differences dwarf their policy differences.

“Grant Robertson’s promise to find $4 billion of savings is 0.8 per cent of government spending, so 99.2 per cent of spending will continue. Under National, the same tax structure, perhaps with minor adjustments for inflation, will remain. The same government departments will continue with bigger budgets for the same goals they fail to meet. Layers of handouts, built-up like lasagne, one bribe at a time, will continue.

“Our alternative budget attacks wasteful government spending by shrinking the bureaucracy. It reduces the number of public servants and removes whole departments that add no value for the public.

“Evicting the current government only to keep its policies isn’t change. We need to evict bad ideas to deliver real change.”

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