Slay The High Tax Dragon

  • Tony Ryall
State Owned Enterprises

The Labour Party should follow the lead of Tony Blair's New Labour Party and slay the high tax dragon when it meets in conference this weekend, State Owned Enterprises Minister Tony Ryall said today.

"Prior to the 1997 UK general election, Tony Blair used Labour Party conferences as a forum to abandon the high tax-and-spend policies of the far left.

"Helen Clark has told the Labour Party that she is campaigning on Tony Blair's so-called 'third way'. But the party should know that high taxes were abandoned by Tony Blair.

"Tony Blair's New Labour Party was elected in the 1997 UK general election with a manifesto commitment that it would not increase taxes.

"Under New Labour there will be no return to the penal tax rates that existed under both Labour and Conservative Governments in the 1970s, indeed we would like to reduce taxes for ordinary families, who have suffered enough." (source: New Labour Manifesto, "New Labour New Life for the Economy" -- attached.)

"Shadow Chancellor Gordon Brown also made an unprecedented promise during the election campaign not to increase the basic or top rate of tax in the UK for five years. He even promised to lower the starting rate to 10p if circumstances permitted it.

"As a signal of the importance we attach to rewarding work, I want to make it clear that I will not increase the top rate of tax." (source: Press Association article, January 20, 1997 -- attached)

"My tax cutting ambition is to introduce a new lower starting rate of tax of 10p to encourage work and to help all hard-working families." (sourced from above)

"Michael Cullen on the other hand wants to punish hard working New Zealanders.

"The New Zealand Labour Party should take Tony Blair's lead and abandon Helen Clark's planned tax increases.

"The taxometer shows that Labour's tax increase to the top rate won't deliver anything like enough cash to pay for all of Labour's spending promises. So who's next in line for tax increases?

"Labour's tax and spending promises don't add up. Labour have over-spent already. If Labour won't acknowledge that, then National intends to keep them honest."