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Half-Truth Helen on Holmes

Labour leader Helen Clark has confirmed Labour’s plan to hand monopoly powers to unions, with a mischievous half-truth during last night’s Holmes debate, Enterprise and Commerce Minister Max Bradford said today.

“Labour will allow only unions to negotiate collective contracts if it is in power, but has attempted to hide this fact from the New Zealand public which has overwhelmingly rejected union membership.

“The facts are these: Under labour, if you want a collective contract you will be forced to join a union whether you want to or not, and you will be forced to pay hundreds of dollars a year in union fees for the privilege.

“Last night Mr Holmes asked Miss Clark if it was correct that under Labour policies only a union could negotiate a collective contract.

“In response, Miss Clark deliberately misled the public, rather than confirm the truth.

She said: “A collective contract is a contract negotiated by a union, but Paul, listen carefully to this because it is part of the heart of the misrepresentation…a group of workers can get a bargaining agent which is not a union to negotiate for them”.

“What Miss Clark did not say, and what she would have been forced to reveal if she finished the sentence, was that agents could not negotiate a collective contract on behalf of workers, only a union could.

“The fact she chose to deliberately mislead, while claiming to correct a misrepresentation shows the lengths Miss Clark will go to to pull the wool over voters’ eyes before election day.

“Voters have been warned; when Miss Clark says ‘listen carefully’ there is a whopping great lie or misleading half-truth on the way,” Mr Bradford said.

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