Opposition parties are firing shots at the government's budget revealed by Finance Minister Bill English yesterday, but the Prime Minister and Maori Affairs Minister are standing by their decisions. Our political reporter Maiki Sherman was in Auckland today and put those concerns to them.
The bread was being slathered with butter at the Prime Minister's post-budget luncheon, while opposition MPs criticised what they say were mere crumbs laid out on the budget table for those in poverty.
Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples says those families feeling the pinch, such as many here in South Auckland, will find comfort in the free doctors' visits and prescriptions for children under 13 years of age.
As the budget returns to surplus the Prime Minister says many New Zealanders living in Australia will look to return home.
For the Maori Party they're not only celebrating securing new funding of around $155mill, but also the final budget for its ministers' Tariana Turia and Pita Sharples.
Voters will have the final say at the general elections as to whether the fruits of the budget were sour or satisfying.