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robson-on-politics Wed 17 Aug 2005

robson-on-politics Wed 17 Aug 2005

robson-on-politics, a newsletter from Matt Robson MP
Deputy Leader of the Progressive Party

Dunedin, the town where kids can buy booze

Channel 9 TV in Dunedin interviewed me about a weekend sting operation which found outrageous cases of alcohol sales to minors by too many Dunedin outlets.

I called on Green, National and Labour Dunedin MPs to look at the public health evidence in their own town, and to reverse their opposition to the Progressive Party's Bill.

Late submissions on alcohol Bill OK

I've had some calls about whether it is OK to still send in submissions to my Sale of Liquor (Youth Alcohol Harm Reduction) Amendment Bill.

I've thought about it and the answer must be that, yes, it must be OK. Late submissions will be accepted because the Select Committee that will hear them won't be elected until September 17!

The Progressive Party's Bill seeks to raise the alcohol purchasing age to 20, that is the age you can walk into your local corner licensed dairy and buy alcohol. It also strengthens provisions relating to the supply of liquor to minors and provides a restriction on TV broadcast liquor advertising before 10pm, amongst other things.

So I say keep those submissions coming in, Stamp Free to Law and Order Committee, Parliament, Wellington.

Jim Anderton, Minister of Education

The endless in-fighting between National, NZ First and ACT since the start of the election campaign is definitely making those of us on the Left increasingly hopeful of achieving a Hat Trick on September 17.

In fact, individual ACT MPs are contradicting other ACT MPs and ditto for National.

The Left hasn't won three general elections in a row since 1943. If we keep positive and focused on the real needs of New Zealanders, if we don't allow ourselves to be side-tracked into the negative, dirty politics of the Opposition, then I think we can be reasonably justified in anticipating a victory in four and a half weeks' time.

Voters and potential voters have a right to know about the likely make-up and policies of a Left coalition government, which is why Jim announced at our campaign launch on Sunday that he would like the Education Portfolio.

Canterbury University talking education

Today I’m at the University of Canterbury Students' Assoc to outline Progressive's commitment to tertiary education. The students also want to know what we would bring to a coalition in the tertiary education area.
Since Progressive released its Graduate Debt Relief policy in November, a number of other parties have adopted complementary policies. That bodes well for the higher education programme in a third term.

One of our points of difference is that the Progressive policy is to meet the interest-and-principal repayment for graduates who work in New Zealand, not just interest.

Campaign launch a celebration of dynamic NZ

The campaign launch on Sunday was really upbeat. Our fifty candidates are a very dynamic, talented group of New Zealanders and we represent the diverse, multi cultural society that New Zealand is in the 21st Century.

I'm getting great feedback on the eight party leaders' debate on TV3. A view of many I've talked to is summed up nicely by undecided voter, Jeremy Wapp, who says in today’s Herald that “More and more, I'm thinking about casting my vote for the Progressives and Jim Anderton.”

But one Aussie doesn’t get it. On Tuesday the international editor of The Age attacked the memory of Mr Lange and had a shot at me. I say to Tony Parkinson that a New World is exactly what the Progressives want.

If Sweden, Ireland, and Mexico want to work with us for a nuclear free world, where the trade barriers against poor nations are torn down - then this Aussie-born politician is all for a dynamic New Zealand foreign policy.

The speech to the foreign policy seminar at Auckland University, rebutting The Age, will shortly be at

Progressive Superannuation Policy

Progressive is campaigning this year on a platform that includes raising the floor of National Super and doing more to financially assist our retired on fixed incomes.

National's (long-overdue) 'Borrow & Hope' package of tax cuts for the rich is a disaster. National's Muldoonism would not only wreck the economy, it would also in no time at all deliver cuts to health, education and National Super in a horrible repeat of the policies of 1975-1999.

Progressive policy for senior citizens will be launched this afternoon.


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