Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Support Grows For Publicans' Party

Support Grows For Publicans' Party

A new political party borne out of the Government’s smokefree laws is gathering support with 28 publicans around the country contacting organisers and saying they’re ready to defy the new law.

Canterbury publican Mr John Van Buren, who owns the Wheatsheaf Tavern on Banks Peninsula, has angered the Ministry of Health for not enforcing strong enough the anti-smoking legislation that has been in place since 10 December last year.

The Ministry has indicated in formal letters to Mr Van Buren and Timaru publican Geoff Mulvihill they had 14 days to respond with any mitigating circumstances before they face the full force of the law. “We don’t think we are breaking the law because we are warning people and taking all reasonable steps to prevent them from smoking on the premises. But people continue to smoke anyway,” he said.

But Mr Van Buren said support from bar and tavern owners ready to defy the ban, with dozens of others around the country contacting party organisers, has only encouraged the two pub owners to continue their political aspirations.

“There’s growing interest around the country from publicans who are enthusiastic about putting their names to a fledgling political movement,” Mr Van Buren said today.

“We publicans and bar owners around the country are the ones who are in-tune with hard-working, taxpaying Kiwis. They’re our customers; they’re our bread and butter; they know us and we know them.”

“Nowhere is the growing discontent with the policies of this Government more evident than the average Kiwi who is being told more and more what they can and can’t do. Smoking is a side issue, but the legislation was the final straw. This government is now discussing ways to tell members of the public how, when and what they can and can’t drink.”

Mr Van Buren said the new party, called WIN, was serious about putting democracy back into politics.

“How long is it before all personal responsibility is taken from us? Our party will promote Freedom of Choice and a return to real democracy, especially for laws that attempt to engineer a particular type of society.”

“There is no freedom of choice with this government. There is only an administration that wants to tell us what to do. It’s the Nanny State,” Mr Van Buren said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>


BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>


Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>


State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>





Featured InfoPages