I have been surrounded by enthusiastic young people this month. This included giving a speech at my old school, Rutherford College. I can’t quite believe that it has been 24 years since I was a student, sitting in the assembly hall listening to people give speeches. One thing I took away from my time with the students was they are interested in New Zealand’s future and the part they play in it, and how positively they see their own futures . These teenagers will have opportunities that we can’t even imagine.
Yesterday, the Labour Government delivered its first Budget. It was a disappointing Budget with no plan beyond tax, borrow and spend.
This Government was gifted an incredible legacy by hard working New Zealanders and by National. They inherited a strong, growing economy improving the lives of New Zealand families. They inherited a much more prosperous and outward looking country.
Yet they delivered a Budget that is strewn with broken promises, not to mention a raft of new taxes from a Government that promised ‘no new taxes’ in its first term.
A National Government I lead will make the boat go faster, not drop anchor on New Zealand’s economy, like this Government has done by shutting down oil and gas, and with its immigration and industrial law changes.
That’s why I’ve been clear we will reverse the decision to stop oil and exploration and repeal the regional fuel tax. By managing the books right and driving economic growth, we can lift wages, create jobs, invest in world class health and education and protect our environment for our children – without raising taxes.
Last weekend the National Party celebrated its 82nd birthday. To coincide with the birthday, the Party released a video which gives a bit of insight into my background, what makes me tick and how my strong family values helped shaped who I am today. Watch the video here:
I want to thank and congratulate the Young Nats for organising a superb ball and a fantastic night out in Auckland. The future of the party is in good hands.
I also want to congratulate Dan Bidois, National’s candidate fighting the Northcote by-election. He is an awesome guy, with an impressive background, and will be a strong voice for the people of Northcote.
As a politician sometimes there are sacrifices you make, and unfortunately that includes spending more time than I would like away from my children. But it does make our family time very enjoyable when we are together. Before I became Leader of the National Party I had promised the children a trip overseas, and we made this happen a few weeks ago. We spent a few days in Hawaii. One of the highlights for the children was meeting a life-size Mickey.
I hit the ground running as soon as I got back from our trip, spending time in Darfield at National's Bluegreens Forum. There were some great discussions. Our focus going forward is successful economic and environmental policies that can work hand-in-hand to help protect our environment.
Finally, I am currently travelling around the country as part of my roadshow to connect with communities and talk to New Zealanders from as many walks of life as possible. I am holding nearly 50 public meetings and I hope to see you at one of them. For more information visit: www.national.org.nz/events