Finance Minister Grant Robertson, Labour’s finance spokesman, said National’ fiscal plan “relies on more cuts to services and cuts to incomes of the poorest New Zealanders.”

Robertson said there was a $537m hole.

“To make matters worse, cutting incomes to fund tax cuts for millionaires is shameful.

“Within National’s plan is a so called buffer. This is a fiction.

“If we were to put Labour’s fiscal plans on the same terms as National’s we have a larger buffer.

“Also, National’s plan continues no further funding for climate action.

He said that was a “recipe for more emissions”.

“We intend to go through the detail of National’s plan in the coming days.

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He said the buffer was propping up the plan.

“Today was an opportunity for Nicola Willis and Christopher Luxon to acknowledge their plan doesn’t add up.

“It’s right there under the preconditions line.

Robertson said any buffer has to be used for other cost-pressures.

“National took money out of the allowances to make their plan look good.

“The money is needed for cost-pressures. They’ll have to spend what’s in their buffer.

“It doesn’t add up.

“It relies on the tax plan that virtually no body thinks adds up.

Robertson said Labour had a $10.5b buffer – “that’s money that’s needed for cost pressures”.

He said when Labour came into government, they faced “astronomical bills” for prisons. He hit out at National’s plan for a “mega-prison”.

Robertson said “this budget is built on a sand castle”.

“The fiscal prudence we we’re looking for was that Nicola Willis would admit their plan doesn’t add up.

He said “we were all wanting to look at” congestion charging.

“Congestion charging has its place, but Simeon Brown needs to say how much revenue and when.

“I would be extremely surprised if it was possible [for revenue to come next year].

“You can’t base your fiscal plan on income no one thinks you’re going to get – it’s a sand castle.

National’s ‘plan’ isn’t trickle down economics, it defies political gravity and demands trickle up!

Why take billions from the poor and hand it to the rich? The State’s job isn’t to cause more inequality, it is to erode it!

We all suspected National’s tax plan was a joke, their fiscal plan is a nightmare!

Some people are so bitter that Jacinda prevented a mass death event that they will vote in political vandalism over re-electing Labour.

National will throw thousands out of state homes with no where for them to go, while cutting 14 000 public service jobs while cutting 140 000 off welfare with sanctions!

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