Greens Grow Up
"The Green Party has achieved much in its first two years in Parliament," Co-leader, Jeanette Fitzsimons said today, "but what we do in the next year will establish us firmly and permanently as the third force in Parliament.
"We celebrate the second anniversary of our entry into Parliament on December 7, with two years of success behind us and a year of opportunity ahead.
"Our presence in Parliament has given us the opportunity to better work for those who now feel left out of politics, disgusted by the extremism of the right and alienated by the cynical centrism of the Government," she said.
"We are getting lots of messages of support from voters who see us as a party of principle, rather than a party of expediency," said Co-leader, Rod Donald.
"The party has never been better placed to face the challenge of an election year. Membership has more than doubled since 1999, as our message reaches out to embrace a wider and wider constituency."
Mr Donald pointed to a number of highpoints over the last two years, including the passage of two bills initiated by the Greens, the adoption of two Green budget packages, a number of select committee inquiries and a range of amendments to legislation.
Party members and supporters around the country are celebrating "Green Day" with a number of events, including a get-together Saturday night at the "Green Capital" - tiny Pokororo Hall in the Motueka River valley.
On election night, 1999, the Greens won the Pokororo polling booth with 41% of the vote, the highest percentage of Green Party votes cast anywhere in the country.
"Green Day" functions are being held around New Zealand but the Pokororo party will take pride of place, with a major speech by Rod Donald, followed by an evening of celebration.