Luxon says phone’s on the hook

National Party leader Christopher Luxon says his party’s MPs will take a break from their caucus retreat to walk around Queenstown today, speaking to people about the challenges the resort continues to face.

Speaking after his leader’s address at the QT Queenstown yesterday, Mr Luxon said the Wakatipu was an "important part of the region ... that is struggling".

"You’ve only got to walk around the main streets of Queenstown right now and go up and down the shops and see that there’s an endless amount of them closed.

"Tourism businesses have been doing it incredibly tough and part of [today] is ... actually going out and seeing people and having real connections with organisations and the public ... social services, start-up businesses, and just get a sense of how we can help.

"I would put it to you, walk around Queenstown.

"It’s not doing it easy."

National Party leader Christopher Luxon speaks to media in Queenstown yesterday, accompanied by...
National Party leader Christopher Luxon speaks to media in Queenstown yesterday, accompanied by his deputy Nicola Willis and Covid-19 Response spokesman Chris Bishop. PHOTO: TRACEY ROXBURGH
During his address, Mr Luxon said the party was still the underdog and knew "we haven’t been at our best" of late.

"We know that the phone’s been off the hook, but now the phone’s on the hook again ..."

The focus now would be on getting the New Zealand public to "take our call" and provide a viable alternative government.

"The message, very clearly, is that it is game on for 2023.

"We’ve got seven quarters to get ourselves organised ... Work really has started today."

Mr Luxon said the party needed to reinvent itself — "we cannot be an old, crusty National Party" — oppose the Government "very strongly", and ensure it had proposals for economic, social and environmental issues.

"What I would say, is the opposing part is really easy because, I have to be honest, the Government gives us lots of material to work with.

"I’m not trying to be mean, or deliberately harsh, or critical for the sake of being critical, but you’ve just got to look at it in a really objective way, and it doesn’t matter what you touch, [nothing is] being delivered."

He was particularly critical of Government spending — an increase of 68% over the past five years — and said if the current trajectory continued, austerity measures would be required.

"The people that get hurt the most are the poor and vulnerable as a consequence.

"We’ve got a situation now, we have inflation going twice the wage growth.

"It’s going to become the pre-eminent problem, I put it to you, over the next year for the New Zealand people."




My advice Mr Luxon is to work on the propose not the oppose. The reason Nats aint been doing well is cos of the stupid attacks. Luxon gave a good speech BUT when asked what the propose would be he came across as a fumbling wreck. He is patronising the downtrodden but then makes it clear he will introduce austerity measures. Luxon you need to show us who the new candidates will be in the marginal seats now. Convince us he will not treat us like he did Air NZ. Will he get rid of Kiwi rail? Will he privatise hospitals? Will he close schools? Will he cut back on the pension? increase the age? Will he borrow money to give top earners a tax break (sounds funny i know but Key was to do that). And of course he will abolish MIQ & open the borders.

Perhaps Luxon could explain how the current NZ government is responsible for the same inflation increases above wage growth issues which are also affecting a number of other countries. If this worldwide issue is in NZ only due to the government then what is he going to do to change the rest of the world?

Will he single-handedly defeat COVID to ensure the supply chain in both NZ, China, and other countries is kept going? Will he get China to switch on all their coal-fired power stations so they can restart their factories? Will he ensure that the dozens of ports around the world with each having many dozens of fully loaded container ships waiting for weeks and months to be unloaded will start unloading?

When the Nats have their convention in Otara or on a marae up in Npapuhi land, and more heavily tax the super rich. more people might take them seriously.