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Locke welcomes Nats' republican leanings

23 April 2001

Green Party MP Keith Locke today welcomed a new openness from the National Party towards New Zealand becoming a republic.

"It's refreshing to see National questioning one of the cornerstones of conservatism, and shows to what degree New Zealand is outgrowing the monarchy," said Mr Locke.

The National Party today released a taskforce report which proposed a referendum on the republican issue and signalled that the report may lead to new National Party policy on the issue.

"I don't see why the referendum needs to wait for the death of the Queen as suggested in the report. A large number of New Zealanders, particularly young people, support a move to a republic," said Mr Locke.

"It is increasingly anachronistic that our head of state is an unelected person living on the other side of the world.

"I hope that other parties follow the National Party and put this issue on their agenda," he said.

ENDS

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