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Winston Speech Extracts - "Election Fodder"

Extracts from a speech by Rt Hon Winston Peters in New Plymouth at 10am Wednesday 22nd September 1999.

New Zealanders are being treated as “election fodder” by the National Party.

Not only have the taxpayers footed the bill for a forty five million dollar APEC election campaign for Mrs Shipley, they are also being treated with contempt over the announcement of the election date.

All New Zealanders will be disgusted that Mrs Shipley is calling the National caucus together on Sunday to discuss the date for the election, without taking the rest of the population into their confidence.

It is interesting to note that in the United States, the people know the dates for their elections right into the 22nd century.

In New Zealand, 3.7 million citizens will only be told when the minority government and its public relations consultants have worked out how to make Mrs Shipley sound good, and how to put a spin on the media release.

This is arrogance of the worst sort, and a slap in the face of democracy.

Is she and her brat pack not aware that the election is for the people and that it is not a benefit routine for the National Party?

We suspect that Mrs Shipley is trying to look like a “statesperson” over the United Nations peacekeeping operation in East Timor.

(And that’s not easy!)

She has conveniently forgotten that she and her hand wringing Foreign Minister did not even want to discuss this awkward subject during APEC but were pushed into it by Australia, Canada and the United States.

Now she wants to pose for photo opportunities for the next few weeks in an army jacket – like Ashburton’s answer to Bodicea!

She is also getting involved in the worst type of pork barrel politics

The Government is secretly trying to organise a tax bribe through a beads and blanket deal with Tau Henare and his renegades in Mauri Pacific.

The country can’t afford to reduce taxation at this time.

Sir William Birch announced a deficit in the 1999 budget which means that this country can’t afford to reduce taxation – that has been made plain.
that has been made plain.

Treasury wants cuts in health and education spending to pay for tax reductions.

The Government is not telling the people about this plan – it only wants to be able to introduce the tax reduction legislation in time for the election campaign.

Tau Henare does not understand that a few million dollars in bribes for Maori now will mean a huge reduction in health and education services for them later on when the tax cuts have to be paid for.

He is simply a pawn in the hands of the National party and its backers in big business.

New Zealanders are sick of the hypocrisy of this minority Government and the bunglers who sit around the Cabinet table.

Things are so bad that Mrs Shipley does not hold press conferences after cabinet meetings.

Our advice at this stage of the election campaign is not to listen to what the old parties say, but remember what they did.

Remember Labour in 1984 – and National in 1990!

Remember that only one party in the past fifteen years has kept its word.


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