Bridges makes first term promise on taxes

But he doesn’t say when he expects that first term to be.

There may be some scepticism about ‘no new taxes in first term’.

Didn’t John Key say something like that and then raise GST? National claimed the GST hike was revenue neutral, offset by reduced income tax rates, but that didn’t affect everyone evenly. Higher consumption taxes like GST can impact disproportionately on poorer people, because much of their income is spent on buying stuff to survive.

National also raised fuel levies.

Didn’t Grant Robertson say something similar and then introduce regional fuel taxes and increase fuel levies?

Didn’t a politician say something that was bent into a different shape when they got into power?

The pledge to ‘repeal any Capital Gains Tax’ is odd – unless bridges concedes he won’t get into power in 2020, and a Labour led Government will introduce more Capital Gains Tax, and then Bridges will repeal it if he takes over in 2023. or 2026. By then this pledge will be forgotten.

And his CGT pledge needs clarification on what it actually means. Capital gains are already taxed in many circumstances. National introduced a 2 year bright line test to make it easier to enforce. Labour increased the brightline test. Would Bridges repeal all that? Would he scrap tax on property deals that now incur a gains tax?

No mention of adjusting personal income tax thresholds. If left unchanged effective tax rates keep creeping up.

Everyone wants to pay less tax.

Most people want the Government to do more and to spend more.

Some people want to pay less tax but want other people to pay more tax.

Politicians make simplified pledges that don’t have a good record of being solid promises.

Stuff have more on this: Bridges: We would repeal capital gains tax

In his speech to Aucklanders at Parenting Place on Monday afternoon, Bridges promised not to introduce any new taxes during National’s first term if elected in 2020.

Bridges told media a capital gains tax was very likely and any proposed exceptions for it were “even more preposterous”.

“New Zealanders are taxed more than enough,” Bridges said.

“No new taxes. Jacinda Ardern also made that promise but she didn’t keep it and it looks like they’re warming up to a capital gains tax. We will repeal that tax, we don’t need any more, it’s bad for our country.

Bridges said the TWG’s interim report created uncertainty and people were factoring it into their decisions already.

“People are deciding to invest less, to do less. We want to be clear with New Zealanders, we will repeal a capital gains tax.”

In his speech Bridges said costs were increasing more than wages.

“It’s becoming more expensive to get by, the Government is taking more of what you earn, and incomes aren’t rising fast enough. The Government has more and you have less. That’s wrong.”

“The Government is imposing a raft of new taxes and regulations on landlords including ring fencing of losses, extending the bright line test, changing the Residential Tenancies Act, introducing more costly standards and threatening a capital gains tax.”

Bridges also criticised the rise in petrol, rents and the Government’s “good intentions that have resulted in bad outcomes”.

“Petrol prices also recently reached record highs. It not only costs you more to rent your house – it costs you more to drive to and from it.”

“The Government have banned letting fees. But landlords are now being charged more rent to cover these new costs. Some are even selling up because it’s become too expensive, too difficult and too complicated. Fewer rentals, higher rents. Good intentions, bad outcomes.”

He also said National would increasing funding for core public services such as health, education and transport.

A typical politician pledging less taxes and more spending.

I couldn’t find any sign of this on National’s ‘news’ page.

Leave a comment

36 Comments

  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  November 27, 2018

    Cullen’s smirk says a CGT is coming. Taxing something never makes it cheaper. Capital gains have been paying a lot of rent for tenants and the tax will go straight onto the rents which have already been hit by new Govt costs and regulations.

    So ironic that so many Lefty voters are going to tax themselves deeper into poverty.

    Meanwhile your caring socialists will take your money when you earn it, again when you save it, and finally when you spend it. Lucky old you.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  November 27, 2018

      GST was introduced by Roger Douglas, hardly a caring socialist.

      Reply
    • Patzcuaro

       /  November 27, 2018

      Are you a smirk reader?

      “Socialists” the bogeyman lurking in the shadows ready to pounce on your hard earned capital gains.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  November 27, 2018

        You didn’t see Cullen on TV responding to allegations his CGT will require thousands of simultaneous valuations? He had that old socialist smirk on for sure. The one that says we are the government and are here to control your life and steal your property.

        Reply
    • Patzcuaro

       /  November 27, 2018

      Those damn lefties, in the good old days they were just made to write like righties, now they have rights and are protected by anti discrimination laws. No more wraps over the knuckle with a cane for just being yourself.

      I try to avoid calling people that a “different”, Righties because it gives the illusion they are correct, i prefer conservative, it gives off a stale odour, covered in dust and cobwebs.

      Reply
      • PDB

         /  November 27, 2018

        Definitions of right/left have changed in the last few decades to the point that people who would’ve been considered ‘left-wing’ in the old days would be classed as ‘right-wing’ today. Therefore right-winger’s today are not all ‘conservatives’ – many are simply classed ‘right wing’ because the left have gone so far left.

        Reply
        • Patzcuaro

           /  November 27, 2018

          I don’t know that left and right changes but the centre does or where on the political scale the majority of the electorate is most comfortable. The bell graph shifts along the axis responding to changes in society. In that context where you are in relation to the centre may change.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  November 27, 2018

            GST lowered prices, as it removed sales tax. Jewellery came down a lot in price. People forget that before GST there was sales tax which was different for different things and GST made it much simpler.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  November 27, 2018

              Made it simpler to tax poor people more.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  November 27, 2018

              It was already simple to tax poor people more either via welfare payments or PAYE.

            • Gezza

               /  November 27, 2018

              Ah but this way governments can pretend they’re not taxing you more because they’re lowering your income tax or at least not increasing it. Tax cuts giving somebody 20 bucks a week back is hardly a major boost to their living standards. Not like giving someone a hundred or a thousand a week back. And GST takes out more of the low income earners’ living expenses than the comfortably offs’ and the millionaires’. I hope you’re not going to start coming the raw kumara with me too, Al?

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  November 27, 2018

              $20 is better tnan nothing. Things like whiteware went down in price, making them much more affordable.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  November 27, 2018

              Inflation taxes everyone more without doing anything as more income moves into higher tax brackets. GST doesn’t change the percentage take as wages and benefits nominally increase. The only time GST takes more is when it is implemented or increased and then it is a highly visible and contended change. To say it makes it easier to charge the poor more is just blatant nonsense.

  2. Gezza

     /  November 27, 2018

    As Corky also seems to also be MIA over the last couple of days, for some reason I feel compelled to say it. “More grist for the mill.”

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  November 27, 2018

      Let’s hope he stays MIA on whichever planet he’s on.

      Perhaps he’s inhaled too much carbon monoxide, as he thinks it’s healthy.

      Reply
  3. Gezza

     /  November 27, 2018

    Bridges: The Government have banned letting fees. But landlords are now being charged more rent to cover these new costs. Some are even selling up because it’s become too expensive, too difficult and too complicated.

    Isn’t that freeing up more houses for first home buyers though? And encouraging the better landlords to build new higher-standard rental units from scratch?

    Reply
    • NOEL

       /  November 27, 2018

      Relative just been given 90 days in Wellington for” renovations”.
      With the perfect storm of unavailable accommodation been rebuilt to earthquake standard and a shortage of rental properties the owners are going to split it into two units with increased rent.

      He’s decided to get out and get a lesser job but with more pay in Australia.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  November 27, 2018

        Interesting. So do you think this could be happening on sufficient scale to crash the government in 2020?

        Reply
    • High Flying Duck

       /  November 27, 2018

      We keep hearing this, but the reality is rental properties are becoming scarcer and rents are rising.
      So you can pick the theory, or the reality.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  November 27, 2018

        Well the theory is there will be market adjustment. But it will boil down to there having to be sufficient critical mass of swing voters adversely impacted by negative outcomes to give their votes to a better alternative. Bridges hasn’t looked too bad on tv of late. Better than before.

        Reply
        • High Flying Duck

           /  November 27, 2018

          He’s still making stupid errors and coming across as uninformed in areas he has criticised the Government. Presentation is getting better. capability is still in question.

          Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  November 27, 2018

      As I’ve told Blazer multiple times, when new home owners can buy an existing former rental house rather than building a new one the stock of houses diminishes. There are fewer landlords and less investment in rental properties. Any that are built cost a lot more to rent. As the market responds to this Govt all this is inevitable and the only question is how far and fast this develops.1

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  November 27, 2018

        the only question is how far and fast this develops

        Well, exactly. But on the other hand if landlords can’t afford to build new houses for rent then ordinary people can’t afford to build them either. So it’s really now a waiting game to see how things go and what solutions the government comes up with if panic sets in.

        Reply
  4. Gezza

     /  November 27, 2018

    Bridges might actually come up a bit in the polls because of public disgust with Jami Lee Ross’s seemingly-baseless allegations of corruption, petulance and traitorous behaviour. But he doesn’t have a track record of success in anything of note himself and promises come cheap.

    While there’s potential for bad outcomes Ardern is still riding high in the paltry few polls that get published here and has the female vote sewn up. New Zealanders are vulnerable to election year bribes by governments who can actually deliver them because they hold the purse strings and to claims by governments that they need another term before the full benefits of their policies will be felt.

    At this stage I don’t think Labour have too much to worry about. And I dunno if the Greens or NZF have yet either.

    Reply
  5. High Flying Duck

     /  November 27, 2018

    Simon Bridges is in a great position. He can promise to not do a whole raft of things, and he’ll be able to keep his promises as the chances of this being a one term government are pretty minuscule at this stage.

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  November 27, 2018

      Depends if the economy turns and Labour finally show us what their working groups are currently hiding – more tax & major anti-business workplace reform. Of course National would still have issues regarding having a viable coalition partner.

      Reply
      • High Flying Duck

         /  November 27, 2018

        That last point is the biggie. Unless National can get to 50%+ (allowing for wasted vote) they have no-one to turn to as a coalition partner.
        It will happen eventually, but is highly unlikely by the next election.

        Reply
        • PDB

           /  November 27, 2018

          The big decision for National is whether they will rule NZL First out as a potential Coalition partner prior to the election – a huge risk as either;

          *NZL First becomes irrelevant without being able to be ‘kingmaker’, their support collapses and the election becomes a straight drag race between Labour/Greens & National/ACT.

          *Voters aren’t convinced National can win and therefore in order to reduce any chance of a straight Labour/Greens govt flock in support of NZL First.

          Reply
  1. Bridges makes first term promise on taxes — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition

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