Election 2023: Chris Hipkins says he has fire in belly as he launches round of attacks on National

Health targets are back if National wins the election, with the party announcing five focus areas for the health system. 

It wants shorter emergency department stays, with 95 percent of patients admitted, discharged or transferred from an ED within six hours. It also wants faster cancer treatment, with 85 percent of patients to be treated within 31 days 

There's also a vaccine target - 95 percent of two-year-olds receiving their full immunisations. 

National also wants shorter wait times for surgeries and specialist assessments - though failed to put a specific target on those.  

Meanwhile, Labour has unveiled its own pledge: a pledge card, a week after National did exactly the same. 

There's nothing like a Sunday rave at a surf life-saving club. 

Christchurch East band The Eastern played a song dedicated to Jacinda Ardern to welcome her replacement. 

Chris Hipkins packed out the hall and used the rally to launch a big round of attacks on National and Luxon. 

"They are so out of touch... They'll make disabled and unemployed New Zealanders worse off… The coalition of cuts is lining up to take us backwards… Full frontal attack on children in low-income families… He doesn't need tax cuts either…They simply can't make their numbers add up… They are taking from those with the least." 

Has Hipkins finally got some fire in his belly? Based on his numerous digs at Luxon, it certainly felt like it. 

"There's plenty of fire there, I can assure you. It's going to be great fun the next five weeks." 

Hipkins used the rally to launch Labour’s nine-point pledge card a week after Luxon's.  

"Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. Labour's been releasing pledge cards for many, many election cycles now." 

Meanwhile, National was launching its plan to reinstate health targets. 

"We are focussed and obsessed on outcomes. That's what it has to be about. That's how we get to improve the daily lives of Kiwis," Luxon said. 

Among them was a promise of $10 for each GP patient if a clinic hits its immunisation targets.  

"They seem to be repackaging what the Government's doing and dressing it up as a health policy," Hipkins said. 

"This is a Government that has spent tens of billions more in health care and hired a huge among of extra public servants and delivered worse outcomes," said Luxon. 

Hipkins said National can't promise much "because they haven't allowed themselves any extra money for health".  

When not being worshipped by supporters, Hipkins visited places of worship, there was a Pasifika church service and a visit to the Sikh Sabha in Woolston. 

A day of faith and party faithful and finally a bit of fire in his belly.