Last year, in an effort to meet its artificial and arbitrary budget surplus target, National removed the $1,000 KiwiSaver kickstart payment. At the time, Prime Minister John Key said that the removal "will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver".
He was wrong:
The number of people signing up to KiwiSaver has slowed significantly since the removal of the $1000 kick-start, bucking a statement from Prime Minister John Key that the change would "not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join."
Analysis by the Herald shows the average number of people signing up to KiwiSaver per month was 15,029 in the year to June 2015 and 16,976 in the year to June 2014.
But since finance minister Bill English scrapped the kick-start incentive in last year's May Budget sign-ups have fallen to an average of 8996 per month with the lowest sign-up level, in October, below 8000.
The change has also made a dent in the number of children in KiwiSaver with nearly 10,000 fewer under-18s now in the scheme.
But this wasn't just a mistake - Key was advised that this would happen. He did it anyway, and tried to lie about its effects. People should be asking whether that's really how they want their Prime Minister to behave.