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Epsom Voters happy to take responsibility

Epsom Voters happy to take responsibility

Richard Prebble

ACT Campaign Director

The election has only just been called and the left’s apologists are already preparing their excuses for their defeat. ’Act’s election prospects depend entirely on (a) John Key virtually gifting it the seat of Epsom and (b) the Key government refusing to implement one of the main findings of the MMP review” Gordon Campbell “Act’s problem with taking personal responsibility´ Scoop 10 March It will be news to Richard Worth that he gifted his seat to ACT, he might have but it was not intentional.

Gordon Campbell just cannot accept that in successive elections Epsom has voted for ACT. Just repeating the claim that it must be because of a “National Party direction” does not make the claim true. ACT as n track to elect at least thre MPs before the “cup of tea” and there will be no cups of tea this election.

A little research would show why ACT gets elected in Epsom. Both Rodney Hide and John Banks have been good constituency MPs. It is easier for an MP from a third party to speak out for his electorate than it is for a MP in a large caucus busy climbing the greasy pole. It is the reason Peter Dunne keeps being re-elected.

Campbell then complains about how much coverage ACT gets but he has answered his own question. With a one seat threshold all list votes for ACT are counted. The average number of MPs ACT has received since MMP is 6 more than enough to hold the balance of power.

Gordon Campbell thinks that MPs elected on the “coat-tails” of a electorate seat should not be elected. He does not consider for a moment how undemocratic his argument is. In essence he is saying “if only the votes of people who vote ACT are disallowed then we can have a Labour/Green Government”. “If only the Royal Commission whose finding were endorsed in a referendum were over turned by the recommendations of unelected officials then the left could win”.

On present polling the other party that may benefit from the one seat threshold is the Maori Party. Is Gordon Campbell advocating those Maori votes be disenfranchised too?

He should ask instead is there a reason why Wellington Central and Epsom have returned ACT MPs. What have the electorates got in common? Census data gives the answer. The two electorates are the highest taxed in the country. It is Epsom who will fund the baby bonus and solar panels etc. Has he heard of the saying “No taxation without representation”?

What really makes Gordon mad is the voters of Epsom are quite willing to take personal responsibility for re-electing John Key and having an “independent” local ACT MP. There was nothing to stop the Mana Party from doing the same for the left except its campaign director has abandoned the party he helped to form to campaign against Mana as Labour’s unofficial campaign director.


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Gordon Campbell:
On First Time Voting (Centre Right)

For the next two days, I’m turning my column over to two guest columnists who are first time voters. I’ve asked them to explain why they were voting, for whom and what role they thought their parental upbringing had played in shaping their political beliefs ; and at the end, to choose a piece of music.

One guest columnist will be from the centre right, one from the centre left. Today’s column is from the centre right – by James Penn:

As someone who likes to consider himself, in admittedly vainglorious fashion, a considered and rational actor, the act of voting for the first time is a somewhat confusing one. I know that my vote has a close to zero chance of actually influencing the outcome of Parliament. The chance I will cast the marginal vote that adds to National or Act’s number of seats in Parliament is miniscule. The chance, even if I did, that doing so would affect the government makes voting on a strictly practical level even more spurious as a worthwhile exercise.

But somehow I have spent a large amount of time (perhaps detrimentally so, depending on the outcome of my upcoming exams) agonising over how to cast my first vote in a national election. More>>

 

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