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When nice Greens go bad

When nice Greens go bad

Progressive Party Deputy Leader, Matt Robson, says he is saddened but not surprised by attacks from Rod Donald of the Greens on proxy voting.

“Clearly all Greens are not always in the House so rely on proxies all the time. When the Greens left the Alliance in 1999 they missed out voting on a key Reserves provisions in the Ngati Turangitukua settlement, Rod and Jeanette were unable to be there, this let down their supporters.

“The outburst that there has been nothing like this in ‘the history of parliament’ shows Rod Donald was too busy plotting in 1999 to notice seven independent MPs whose votes were held by National even though they were never in the House.

“There needs to be one rule, either there are no proxies and every MP must be in the House to vote or we grant proxies sensibly. This might not affect the Greens who never intend to be part of a Government and cannot be relied on for confidence and supply. However this notice of motion was simply to organise proxies for two Progressive MPs, said Matt Robson.

Parliament was due to consider the Government Notice of Motion No. 3 today.

Labour, the Progressives and United Future had agreed to the motion which would have extended to the Progressives proxy voting – or the casting of the party's votes with the government on occasions when both of the Progressive M.P.s were outside of debating chamber doing important government work.

"Peter Dunne, leader of the United faction of United Future, is a good person and gave his word to me to support this procedural issue repeatedly over a number of months, most recently on Thursday of last week. He understands the proposal would facilitate the Labour Party Whip's job of managing the legislative programme of the minority Labour-Progressive government," Matt Robson said.

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