Q&A – Robertson and Adams on the budget

Both the Minister of Finance Grant Robertson and the Opposition spokesperson in finance, Amy Adams, will be interviewed on Q&A this morning.

Robertson was competent on the Nation yesterday but could be pushed more by Corin Dann.

National seemed all over the place in their criticisms of a budget that was widely viewed as not much different to what a National budget might have been. It will be interesting to see Adams’ approach now.

Are you ditching neoliberalism? “…looking to transform the basis of our economy”.

The government isn’t going to get bigger. It’s going to get smarter.

Fiscal discipline emphasised by Robertson. Transforming in a deliberate and planned way, in contrast to the rapid reform in the 1980s.

What about dealing with the so called crises? Cites health rebuilding, but nothing out of the ordinary.

Child poverty? Robertson thinks they will make a big difference, citing $75 per week from the families package, due to kick in on 1 July.

Working poor? He only mentions help for families, not workers with no dependant children. No holding to account on this.


  1. Zedd

     /  May 20, 2018

    Robertson was just reaffirming that the budget was about changing course.. but not a radical ‘jump to the left’.. Adams was just pushing the Tory mantra; ‘we know best’; neo-liberal, trickledown B-S (give everything to the top table & a few scraps will get tossed to the rest), that many other OECD countries are now rejecting !

  2. David

     /  May 20, 2018

    “National seemed all over the place in their criticisms of a budget that was widely viewed as not much different to what a National budget might have been.”

    They are really lost on this one. They simply should have said it looks roughly the same as the National budget and be done with it. The only differences were slight, more money to social welfare, the free year at uni and no tax cuts, or even moving the tax bands. Oh, and the handsome horse tax break.

    Given the swing of public finances into the black, they have plenty of room to move.

    • PDB

       /  May 20, 2018

      Remember when Labour came all out against the National govt when they raised benefits for the first time in decades?

      Plenty for National to get their teeth into however from the budget – talk up the high revenues raised by the National govt that show up here, many broken election promises by Labour, NZL First holding the country to ransom and Labour letting down many including the middle class, teachers, nurses, midwives and Maori.

  3. Blazer

     /  May 20, 2018

    the B team are lost…Mr Bridges howling at the moon…and his deputy dawg,back on the…pies!

  4. Traveller

     /  May 20, 2018

    Of far more interest to me was Marae

    It won’t take too much for a Māori to realise theyve been royally shafted as under any coalition with Winnie there’ll be NO MORE Whanau Ora. Peters is ideologically opposed to ALL race based payments to Māori and hates Whanau Ora.

    Giving a billion to the Islands and an embassy in Sweden is not going down well on Marae nationwide who are dealing with systemic social and employment issues.

    Māori seats are key to Government benches 2020. Winnie is intransigent, it doesn’t matter what Ardern says she wants from a Working Grouo. He simply won’t yield and neither will his dwindling racist support base.

    • Traveller

       /  May 20, 2018

      Excuse typos please

    • Zedd

       /  May 20, 2018

      what narrow thinking: you, Natl (JL Ross) & the maori pty have.. try: politics 101
      its called ‘being in a MMP coalition’ NOT just steamrolling over the others, to ram through the main party’s agenda. Labour need to actually listen to NZF & Greens to make it work !

      one thing is clear; most kiwis did not want another 3 years of NATIONAL/u’f/act/maori 😦

      • PDB

         /  May 20, 2018

        Zedd: ” most kiwis did not want another 3 years of NATIONAL/u’f/act/maori”

        Most Kiwis actually wanted National/NZL First based on how the numbers fell in the election (National-NZL First 65 seats, Labour-Greens-NZL First 63 seats). Winston extracted a huge amount of policy & money from Labour so desperate they were for power.

        In general Labour have shat on Maori for at least the past three or four decades and take their historic support for granted. Unfortunately in a political form of ‘battered housewife syndrome’ every 2nd election or so Maori drift back to Labour again only to be completely ignored again.

        If the Maori party get a decent leader next election I see them playing a huge role in who forms the next govt.

      • Traveller

         /  May 20, 2018

        46% did mate. By far the largest voting bloc. A raging bauble chasing narcisssit/racist and Labour/Greens. How’s that gonna Work?

        It’s not. You lot can spin it as you want but Mr I’m in charge Twyford, Ms ClareasMud Curran, Commander RonAir Mark, Root for the “Regions”Jones and NZLast Peters are fast making us look like a Banana Republic. The boss is off to change nappies for a few weeks and leaving us with a man who can hardlybstring a sentence together.

        Can’t wait.

        • Blazer

           /  May 20, 2018

          watch your blood pressure…there [deleted]

  5. sarineal

     /  May 21, 2018

    National isn’t confused because Labour actually has been given a record tax take and a surplus to play with but their spending priorities are skewed and all over the place. So it’s tax and spend and broken promises and quite a few of those are due to paying off coalition partners. 7% of the vote for NZ First and how many billions so far? Remember there were 2 budgets, that first budget was untargeted spending on the free fees and their family package etc and paying off part of their dues to coalition partners, namely NZ First getting a billion for regional development. Some promises were ditched early on, they promised rare diseases $20 million and that isn’t coming. This simply isn’t a blue budget, a blue budget would have been more conservative but balanced in spending priorities and tried to get the best bang for the buck out of a limited pool of funding.

    Then comes budget time, the proper budget and things were obviously rather tight indeed with lots of scrimping and saving but of what are small amounts in the context of the larger budget. More promises are broken, and funding for a number of social programs go – Roxburgh children’s camps, a rural suicide line. Not sure what else but eventually it is announced he’s saved $700 million. There’s all these anomalies, health and education get no more of a lift than before (and they promised extra for wage rounds), foreign affairs is raised, biosecurity gets funding chopped. Pharmac looks as if it gets a rise, but it’s taking over purchasing for DHB’s including any left over funding. They don’t allow for wage rises in the public sector, there’s a bit the first year then funding effectively vanishes. They predict unusually rosy economic indicators, but can’t see that the way policy is going and can’t see how stratospheric fuel prices and wage rises with no productivity gains isn’t inflationary.

    It’s not good seeing that, nor the unions try and massage it as some kind of roadmap or future thinking budget and something will come later. It’s not.

    • Blazer

       /  May 21, 2018

      you’ll get over …it.I hope.Nationals finance spokesperson has started off very poorly,and Mr Bridges is not…impressive.