The recent leader’s debate was really frustrating. Not only did Christopher Luxon get way more time than Chris Hipkins but it felt to me that his presentation on various issues were up to the edge of what is true.
TVNZ has engaged a group of experts to comment on some of what he said and the conclusion is that his pants were on fire.
Academics at Auckland University’s Public Policy Institute (PPI) have run their eye over last night’s TVNZ Leaders’ Debate and given their verdict.
They found that Hipkins was right to say inflation is coming down, but partly wrong to claim National tax cuts would worsen inflation.
Meanwhile, Luxon was incorrect to claim National invented the phrase “by Māori, for Māori” but on the mark in saying retail crime had doubled in the last two years. The PPI found Luxon to be the main offender on making false claims in the debate.
And here are the whoppers:
• Foreign home buyers tax would bring in $750 million (Luxon) – in reality, it is estimated to be about $210 million.
• No fruit and veg GST savings will be passed on to customers (Luxon) – Grocery Commissioner will monitor pricing to prevent this.
• Labour didn’t implement the Circuit Breaker initiative (Luxon) – Has been rolled out and is being extended.
• National supports school lunches for all (Luxon) – They support the current policy (targeted lunches) pending a review of costs.
• National invented “By Māori, for Māori” (Luxon) – Used in matauranga Māori by Māori thinkers and leaders such as Mason Durie decades before
• Every single health outcome has gone backwards under Labour (Luxon) – Most health outcomes (eg general mortality, cancer deaths, maternal health) have remained the same or improved.
As a Christian I hope he reflects on the importance of being truthful.
By way of contrast Hipkins’ answers were determined to be either true, mostly true or half true. The half true statement was that National tax cuts would make inflation worse on the basis that it depends on government spending. Generally tax cuts would make it worse. I guess savaging Government spending could have a deflationary effect.
The analysis reinforces the very strong message that you cannot trust National.