Not a lurch to the left

The Herald writes:

Nats lurch to left to take on Labour with lay-offs plan

National has barged into traditional Labour territory with a support plan for people who lose their jobs which uses Labour’s mechanisms and is targeted away from high-income earners.

This is in fact not a lurch to the left. National has always been the party that supports targeting welfare towards those most in need – community services card, means testing etc etc. Labour is the party of middle class welfare that hates means testing and believes in universality – that the parents of say a four year old should pay the same to see the doctor regardless of whether they earn $30,000 or $200,000.

So National targetting assistance to those most in need is not a lurch to the left. It is traditional centre-right thinking. It is why centre-right people like me say NZ Super should be means tested so Bob Jones doesn’t get a pension from the taxpayers. It’s why I say that a family on $200,000 should pay the cost of seeing a GP, but a family on $30,000 should not.

As Key notes:

Mr Key yesterday said National was targeting people in real need, and he could not understand why Labour had not done so.

“I don’t think, for example, that it’s a good idea for the Government to make generous payments to a person who has a partner earning more than $100,000, who has no children, and who is already wealthy compared to most New Zealanders,” he said.

The only thing that worries me:

The Green Party and unions have praised National’s plan and called for the plans to be combined.

No, not seriously worried. It is good to see them telling the truth that National’s plan is a good one compared to Labour’s. Labour’s was obviously put together in desperation after National announced that had been working on such a policy.

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