Raise the pension age and ditch MMP - survey

The Main Report's annual “Sacred Cows” survey shows a high degree of support for supposedly unpopular policies.

The Main Report’s annual “Sacred Cows” survey shows a high degree of support for supposedly unpopular policies.

Heading the list is the pension age – only 14% of those surveyed said it should remain at 65, with those strongly in favour numbered 24% and moderately in favour 30.4%.

Nearly a third - 31.5% - opposed a capital gains tax, but 21.7% were strongly in favour and the same number are moderately so.

Those surveyed were also asked their views on partial floats of state owned enterprises: only 24.9% responded “not at all”, with 24.2% “strongly” in favour and 27.2% “moderately” in favour.

But Main Report publisher Max Bowden said that apart from the pension age it was the issue of MMP and the size of Parliament which got the strongest responses.

Well over half – 57.1% - were not at all or somewhat unlikely to support MMP, while 54.7% agreed that Parliament has too many MPs.

Some of the more intriguing information comes when the various results are co-related, Mr Bowden said.

More than half – 52% - of those who support raising the pension age also support a capital gains tax, Mr Bowden said.

“These are presumably the fiscal hawks.”

The survey also shows a clear Left/Right divide over MMP and electoral issues.

MMP supporters were more likely to favour a capital gains tax, Mr Bowden said, and were also more likely to be against partial asset sales.

MMP supporters are also more interventionist, with 38% supporting a more economically interventionist government compared with 19% of MMP opponents.

As to whether Parliament has too many MPs, only 38% of MMP supporters agree compared with 75% of MMP opponents.

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