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Jones Challenges Key To Debate In Kerikeri

Shane Jones
List Member of Parliament
Media Statement

24 February 2008

Jones Challenges Key To Debate In Kerikeri

“John Key I challenge you to come to Kerikeri and debate your policy that you ‘would love to see wages drop’,” Northland List MP and cabinet Minister Shane Jones said today.

Mr Key’s comments were published in the Bay of Islands newspaper the Bay Report (20/12/07) and a transcript of the question and his answer was run in the Northern Advocate yesterday (Saturday February 22).

Mr Jones said Mr Key’s policy on driving wages down would have a drastically harsh effect on average Northlanders who already have modest disposable income.

“Wage levels are not flash in the North and the suggestion that by cutting wages our living circumstances are going to improve is a joke,” said Mr Jones.

“The first casualty under Mr Key’s policy will be Maori who make up 31.7 percent of Northland’s population.

“Many of these Maori families have benefited from the range of Labour Government social policies such as the ‘Working for Families’ package.

“It would appear as far as Mr Key and his friends are concerned, these vulnerable whanau should have the rug swept from under their feet and become permanently condemned to poverty.

“It is the same Don Brash policy on Maori being served up in another form.”

Mr Jones said there is only one way for Mr Key to prove he was a man of substance.

“And that is for ‘Mr Hone Iti’ to come to Kerikeri and debate his policies openly with me in front of the very Northlanders whose lives in intends to entrap and diminish.

“So I invite him to return to Kerikeri where he made his brash statement to debate exactly what he said and what he intends to do.

“He needs to offer more to the North other than a nosing up with Tame Iti.”


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