This will be my last newsletter for the year, and so is a chance to reflect on the year past and to anticipate the year soon to begin.
Before that however, there are several recent events in parliament that I feel important to comment on. The first concern is the continued push by this Labour government towards co-governance. I have recently penned an opinion piece tackling this issue, you can read it here. My point is simple - co-governance or tribalism do not fit with democracy.
Related to this of course was the government ramming through its Three Waters agenda last week. Myself and the the National Party team fought it the whole way, but ultimately Labour has the numbers. Importantly, and something to keep in mind is that no other Party, other than Labour, voted for the Bill. That’s right, even the Greens and Maori Party voted against it!
On the more positive front, the government pulled back from entrenching parts of Three Waters. It is outrageous they even considered this in the first place, but good they have seen their error and corrected the mistake. I know many of you spoke up and out against this move, so my thanks to you!
I am also sad to report that crime continues to be an issue in our community. The team at the liquor store on Aitken Ave in Mission Bay were hit again recently, and a store owner in Meadowbank has had enough and sold up. I will continue working with our local police but we all know that until there is a change of government, law and order is not going to be given the priority needed.
Finally, this week has seen me pushing back on the left wing’s latest ideological battle - that of introducing hate speech laws. The government is determined to add ‘insulting religion’ as a form of hate speech. I am a strong supporter of free speech and see all of these manoeuvrings as very dangerous; ultimately undermining our democracy. I wrote an opinion piece on this a few weeks back and you can read it here - it sums up my concerns, including how we only recently got rid of blasphemy laws and here is the left wing returning to re-apply it! You can also see my speech in parliament here or here
2022 has been quite the year, but a great year. There have been many successes from opening more of the shared cycleway from Glen Innes to Tamaki Drive – a project I sourced the initial funding for. There has also been the installation of CCTV cameras at Achilles Point; getting the work crews needed in to speedily finish street works in St Heliers and Mission Bay; and drawing national attention to the blight that are ram raids in our community. Alongside these few examples have been the hundreds of local constituent meetings and issues - from helping sort immigration problems to ensuring access to life saving health treatment. No day is the same in the role, but each day is a welcome chance to help and serve this community.
We also have the wider success for the National Party. A year ago we were polling in the low to mid 20s, but now edging on 40%. This is very encouraging and the whole team of MPs, including Christopher Luxon, are doing a good job focusing on the key issues - from cost of living, to crime, housing to healthcare.
It is from this very positive foundation that I am looking forward to 2023. It is election year and I am ready to once again campaign, with an awesome team of people behind me. It is very much a case of ‘two ticks Blue’ as only a vote for National will change the government.
The election will be hard fought though. Labour and its mates on the Left will not give up easily, so all and any help you may be prepared to give would be welcome - from your time delivering flyers or putting up hoardings, donating funds to offering policy advice. If you would like to be part of an exciting campaign with me here in Tamaki, drop me a line via this email.
My electorate and parliamentary offices will be closed over the Christmas break, re-opening from Monday 16 January 2023.
As always, my thanks for your incredible support and encouragement over this year. Your thoughts and challenges on matters of importance to you and your families is always welcome - be they around local issues or more broadly. I hope you and your family have a lovely summer season, celebrating the likes of Christmas of course, but also Hanukkah. May these coming weeks be a time to recharge the batteries, enjoy time with friends and family, and of good health and cheers.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. See you in 2023!
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