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MMP democracy is working well

4 February 2005

Grant Gillon, Progressive Party president

MMP democracy is working well

New Zealand has the most representative and transparent Parliamentary democracy among the English-speaking countries such as Australia, Canada, the U.K. and the U.S., says Progressive Party president Grant Gillon.

"What the voting record shows is that our minority coalition government, with just 53 of the 120 seats, has gone to extraordinary lengths to reach out and build very broad-based consensus among opposition parties to advance our legislation.

"Of the 100 or so non-Budget and non-Confidence related contested laws that have been enacted since the July 2002 election, over 80% have secured the support of more than one Opposition party even though Labour-Progressive legislation in fact only requires one non-government party's support to be successful.

"That is a tribute to the success of the coalition government's democratic engagement with Parliament and also a sign that all parties in Parliament are to various degrees participating in putting together better laws for New Zealand, and in a way that the voting public can see and measure," Grant Gillon said.

"It isn't like that in other English-speaking Parliaments, it isn't anything like that.

"In the United States' House of Representatives, two parties totally dominate. Two-party limited democracy also rules the roost to varying degrees in the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia," Grant Gillon said.

For full voting record see: http://www.progressive.org.nz/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=1484

ENDS

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