Family First on Don’s voting record

May 11th, 2011 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

Bob McCoskrie blogs:

We’ve been contacted by a number of supporters asking about the voting record of new ACT party leader Dr , who may be a key player in forming the next government. …

On the positive side, he voted 
AGAINST Civil Unions and Relationships Bills
FOR Parental Notification for teenagers seeking an abortion
AGAINST the Care of Children Bill,
and FOR the Marriage Amendment Bill which defined marriage as one man and one woman. 

Most importantly, while in Parliament, he voted AGAINST the Anti-smacking bill …

On the negative side, he voted
FOR the decriminalisation of Euthanasia
FOR the decriminalisation of Prostitution
AGAINST Raising the Drinking Age back to 20,
and AGAINST the ability for Manukau City to ban the problem of Street Prostitution.

It should come as no surprise that what FF lists as negatives, I regard as positives. While Don was not entirely consistent, he generally has been a social liberal on “moral” issues. He did flip on civil unions, having voted for at first reading and then against at second reading. It would be interesting to know what his stance is today on issues such as civil unions, the drinking age etc.

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42 Responses to “Family First on Don’s voting record”

  1. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    He also wanted, and continues to want, a wide ranging inquiry into the Peter Ellis case. In this regard, he seems to have considerably more moral courage than the current crop of MPs. Simon Power, in particular, will be remembered for rubber-stamping bad advice from the Justice Ministry and for showing a lack of independent thought re the Ellis case. A classic case of Yes, Minister.

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  2. Grendel (873 comments) says:

    in his interview on perigo he said that he voted yes for the civil union bill to get it to select committee and becuase he beleived it was a big enough change that it warranted a referendum. he voted against the final bill becuase of the lack of referendum.

    he also said it was a mistake in hindsight and he should have just voted for the civil unions.

    i can’t see why he would have changed from being a social liberal, certainly his comments on perigo support that.

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  3. Ryan Sproull (6,661 comments) says:

    Possibly what’s more concerning is not that he flipped on civil unions, but why he flipped on civil unions.

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  4. toad (3,654 comments) says:

    @Ryan Sproull 11:15 am

    I think a couple of million dollars in proxy election advertising courtesy of the Exclusive Brethren had quite a lot to do with that.

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  5. decanker (220 comments) says:

    It would also be interesting to see what John Banks’ position on issues like these are… sure he’ll romp home in Epsom, but I still don’t think he’s fits with Act.

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  6. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    How are your free New York dinners tasting there toad?

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  7. Viking2 (10,723 comments) says:

    well he was always mouthing off about how he was going to clean up downtown Auckland. Has anyone seen that happen yet??

    Egotist and not ACT material.

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  8. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    Re: Civil Unions, there was a letter from Perigo to Brash in The Hollow Men which amounted to an anguished Perigo accusing Brash of something like a ‘betrayal’ due to his backflip on Civil Unions. And this is from a friend, who presumably knew how Brash thought on such issues. I think i’ve got the gist of it, but don’t happen to have the book on me at the moment..

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  9. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    clean up downtown Auckland.

    Does that mean moving that fat beggar with a radio somewhere else?

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  10. magic bullet (776 comments) says:

    Family first represents the segment of NZ that would turn back the clock, morally in NZ. Only problem is, we aren’t in the 1950s any more. Our innocence has been lost, and the only way to a better future now, is for us to face the hard truths about ourselves, and the world around us. This will mean letting go of our prejudices and examining the available information with a critical yet open mind. Statistics are useful in this endeavour – and the people who skew such information, particularly PR people, are preventing the advancement of the human race. The real world experience of those on the front-line of dealing with social dysfunction is invaluable as well. Social workers, WINZ case officers, charities and police, whilst they all obviously have their biases need to be exhaustively quizzed re-what they would like to see changed re-the law, and the guidelines for their delivery of service – then an integrated strategy, based on the experience of these people could be established to tackle the social problems we face. Some how i doubt National will be willing to see this kind of evidence-based practice through though. That is not their way.

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  11. Grendel (873 comments) says:

    gee toad, you mean the completely legal advertising that the bretheren did that unions have been doing for labour for years? hypocrite much?

    course its all part of a day of hypocracy for the greens. we hate the US, but will take a free holiday there. we are against nasty property investors and rich pricks but the party has its own property portfolio that it uses to rort the accomodation allowance at parliament.

    you are only pissed at the bretheren becuase they showed in plain facts just how wrong and dangerous you lot are.

    - Ryan, watch the perigo interview, he explains it succinctly.

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  12. Longknives (4,048 comments) says:

    Stephen those fat beggars with radios are the “celebration of diversity of Auckland’s people” according to Len Brown. Last I heard he was going pump ratepayer money into building a statue of one of K-Rds recently departed old homeless drunks….

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  13. magic bullet (776 comments) says:

    What’s wrong with diversity LK? Why should human beings conform to your limited normative notions? The bell curve was created in the 1800s by demographers, intent on ruling the masses according to Aristotelian logic. The notion of “the golden mean” that people should conform to, is irrational and bunk. People like you are but unconscious vessels, carrying this faulty, thousands of years old meme forward in to a world that was completely unimaginable at the time of its conception. To avoid atrophy as a species and a society, we need those that exist on the margins, to provide different strategies of adaptation to changing circumstances. That is a dynamic culture. That is a dynamic society. Let’s celebrate diversity!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_mean_(philosophy)

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  14. nasska (9,526 comments) says:

    Longknives @ 11.52am

    …”Last I heard he was going pump ratepayer money into building a statue of one of K-Rds recently departed old homeless drunks….”

    It must be true…for years we have been told by the residents of the City of Sails that their burgh is the economic powerhouse of NZ. Now our doubts have been laid to rest….after paving the streets with gold & creating railways systems Len Brown has been forced to commission artworks of deros to spend the revenue surpluses.

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  15. Longknives (4,048 comments) says:

    Magic Bullet there is little ‘Dynamic’ about spending your days lying drunk on Karangahape Road, pissing your pants and babbling incoherently at passers by…
    I may be an unconscious vessel. But at least I am not unconscious (and smelling of urine).

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  16. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    Stephen those fat beggars with radios are the “celebration of diversity of Auckland’s people” according to Len Brown.

    Somehow I don’t think this happened.

    edit: rather, exactly what did Brown say about the homeless issue?

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  17. hj (5,693 comments) says:

    That’s the problem with our system: you don’t get to choose your policy mix and that is demonstrated by the wide ranging support for the Coastal Coalition ranging from Muriel Newman to Chris Trotter.

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  18. Ryan Sproull (6,661 comments) says:

    I remember Perigo’s letter to Brash about his flip on civil unions. It was at that point in the book that I began to feel genuinely sorry for Don Brash.

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  19. dime (8,752 comments) says:

    The Don is all about legal hookers. He’s always looking out for Dime:)

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  20. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “On the positive side, he voted
    AGAINST Civil Unions and Relationships Bills,
    FOR Parental Notification for teenagers seeking an abortion,
    AGAINST the Care of Children Bill,
    and FOR the Marriage Amendment Bill which defined marriage as one man and one woman.”

    Thats a pretty good record, and it makes me seriously consider party voting ACT this time.

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  21. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    I remember Perigo’s letter to Brash about his flip on civil unions. It was at that point in the book that I began to feel genuinely sorry for Don Brash.

    If only because it really rams home what politics will do to a person, if he wasn’t already aware, that is:

    “You have succumbed to McCullyism, and there is nothing more despicable in politics than that… You’ll all go down, which is what you all deserve.”

    edit: yes I should probably watch that video

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  22. Scott (1,614 comments) says:

    This issue I believe relates well to the issue of runaway government spending. To me free market requires free citizens which requires a strong sense of morals and respect for others. On the left massive government intervention is a companion to Liberal social policies — domestic purposes benefit, single-parent families, abortion on demand, gay rights, prostitution etc etc. Those policies require massive government spending.

    I am a fan of everything that DPF is against. I believe in marriage, strong families, caring for our children including the unborn, the sanctity of life etc. These policies create self-sufficient families that generally do not require government benefits.

    I think Don Brash is really part of the Liberal paradigm that is the cause of the problem not the solution. It will be interesting to see how he gets on in the election. He is a mixture of dry economic policies and wet social liberalism. I suspect he will be an unattractive candidate for the Liberals who generally like someone more flamboyant and not so dry economically. I suspect he will also be an unattractive candidate for those on the right who generally prefer morally sound politicians with more of a family values perspective.

    Also unlike Don and DPF I believe in God and that there are unchangeable moral truths that exist regardless of our preferences. That is why I think liberalism in its current form is fundamentally wrong. Liberalism today assumes that human nature is basically good and that all we need to do is free everybody of any social and religious restrictions and all will be well. How do you think that we are doing so far?

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  23. magic bullet (776 comments) says:

    “I may be an unconscious vessel. But at least I am not unconscious (and smelling of urine).”

    Children remind us of the lighter side of life – in this regard they are, indispensable living symbols. They provide a reality check – putting things in perspective. So to do these people you peer at distastefully down your nose. They can enjoy life without worrying about wealth and status, which is something that’s important to understand. The ones that have a miserable time of it should not be swept aside in judgement. They are part of our community, and it’s good that they provoke reactions of distaste from people like you, because it proves that they’re doing their job – making you think of the uncomfortable truths that exist in this land of plenty.

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  24. GPT1 (2,042 comments) says:

    Did I imagine it or did Don comment at some point that he regretted his change of stance on civil unions?

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  25. Chuck Bird (4,411 comments) says:

    It would be nice to know Brash’s view on Direct Democracy like a Voters Veto like is practiced in Switzerland. It would not only stop militant pressure groups forcing their views on the majority but make for better legislation like an Upper House would. The smacking law would have had Borrow’s amendment. I would not hold my breath as most politicians have a very high opinion of the common sence of the peasants.

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  26. Rufus (606 comments) says:

    Magic – do you actually think about the crap you type?

    “…these people you peer at distastefully down your nose. They can enjoy life without worrying about wealth and status, which is something that’s important to understand.”

    Really?!

    I thought drunken bums were a drag on society. You and I have to work hard to pay for their upkeep. The only reason they “enjoy life” is because our loving, caring society is helping them maintain their lifestyle. We actually pay them to be bums. In other countries they’d starve and die.

    Do you really think they “enjoy life”? I suggest that in fact they’re trying to escape their misery through drink and drugs. Numb the pain.

    “The ones that have a miserable time of it should not be swept aside in judgement. They are part of our community, and it’s good that they provoke reactions of distaste from people like you, because it proves that they’re doing their job – making you think of the uncomfortable truths that exist in this land of plenty.”

    Oh sorry, I always thought a drunken bum = a drunken bum.

    I hadn’t realised that in fact they’re really hard-working, valuable members of society who contribute to make us all better people.

    What great personal sacrifice it must take to do their job! Why we don’t value their tireless efforts on our behalf more is beyond me!

    Question: Why should the “truth” of their abject misery, their utter inability to look after themselves (to the point that they can’t even control their own bodily functions) make us all uncomfortable?

    We should all want to emulate them and their gloriously carefree existence – right?! Isn’t that the point of life? To be carefree like that bum down the street?

    You first.

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  27. Rufus (606 comments) says:

    Oh – and in the interests on staying on track – I like some of Don, and some not.

    He does stand out in that he doesn’t mind saying things that need to be said. Unlike the current lot.

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  28. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    He does stand out in that he doesn’t mind saying things that need to be said.

    Most common in opposition politicians, especially those not (seriously) campaigning for a serious chunk of the vote.

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  29. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    A fisking of MB

    “Family first represents the segment of NZ that would turn back the clock, morally in NZ.”

    Yes, it is a growing segment and for good reasons, many of which are well articulated by Scott above. If a clock is wrong, it should be righted. If your on the wrong path, it makes sense to backtrack and get on the right one.

    To anyone with a shred of awareness, we are on the wrong path.

    “Only problem is, we aren’t in the 1950s any more.”

    Your right, that IS a problem in one sense.

    “Our innocence has been lost,”

    Not true. We did not have our innocence back then either, we lost it long before that. Think dawn of time. What we did have was a shared moral concensus and framework which limited the amount of evil in society.

    That is why, unlike the 50′s and before, we now have murders so often they barely rate news. Why the elderly are beaten, raped and killed in their own homes, when they should be safe. Why the beating, rape and murder of babies is now a regular event.

    Such things were almost unheard of in the 50′s, or at least so rare they were genuinely shocking.

    Not anymore.

    “and the only way to a better future now, is for us to face the hard truths about ourselves, and the world around us.”

    Yes, the hard truth is that we cannot live without a strong moral code that instills respect for others and their property, that fosters self-reliance, and that fosters and supports strong marriages and families.

    “This will mean letting go of our prejudices and examining the available information with a critical yet open mind.”

    I agree. The current prejudice against traditional morality needs to go, and the available information tells us that since the 50′s we have gone badly wrong as a society.

    “The real world experience of those on the front-line of dealing with social dysfunction is invaluable as well. Social workers, WINZ case officers, charities and police, whilst they all obviously have their biases need to be exhaustively quizzed re-what they would like to see changed re-the law”

    Many of these people will tell you that moral decline, broken marriages, easy divorce and the easy availability of the DPB are all part of the problem.

    “and the guidelines for their delivery of service – then an integrated strategy, based on the experience of these people could be established to tackle the social problems we face.”

    the problems we face have not been created by a lack of welfare services. We have had massive welfare spending for over fifty years and it has not only not worked, it has, along with the decline in traditional morality, helped create the problems we have.

    “Some how i doubt National will be willing to see this kind of evidence-based practice through though. That is not their way.”

    On some issues, such as law and order, they have followed the evidence.

    “What’s wrong with diversity?”

    Define “diversity”. Its just a meaningless slogan. But I will answer the question anyway.

    If “diversity” means that I like one kind of car and you like another, then diversity is fine.

    If diversity means moral anarchy, then thats not fine, because we end up right where we are, massive rates crime and violence, broken marriages and families.

    “Why should human beings conform to your limited normative notions?”

    Why should they conform to Liberalism’s limited notions?

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  30. DJP6-25 (1,231 comments) says:

    Scott 1:23. You raised several good points.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  31. DJP6-25 (1,231 comments) says:

    Lee01 2:01. The things you are complaining of are the consequences of 60 plus years of socialisim and relativisim.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  32. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    David,

    I agree.

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  33. Pete George (21,812 comments) says:

    Scott: I am a fan of everything that DPF is against. I believe in marriage, strong families, caring for our children

    I don’t recall DPF saying he’s against any of those. Have you got any references?

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  34. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “I don’t recall DPF saying he’s against any of those”

    He’s a liberal, of course he is.

    He’s in favour of legal and easily avialiable gambling. He’s in favour of maintaining the current age for drinking alcohol. He’s in favour of homosexual marriage.

    Those are a just a few examples.

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  35. Pete George (21,812 comments) says:

    He’s in favour of homosexual marriage.

    That sounds like he’s in favour of marriage, for anyone that wants to get married.

    Nothing else you’ve said says he’s against strong families and caring for children. Hang on, I know he’s for watching a bit of TV and also for a market free to sell TVs – too much TV can be bad for children and bad for good family communications, maybe that could count against him

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  36. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “That sounds like he’s in favour of marriage, for anyone that wants to get married.”

    Not really. When marriage is reduced to just another lifestyle choice that anyone can participate in then it does in fact weaken the institution.

    Strong marriage that benifits the nation is marriage that is for life and for the primary pupose of creating and raising children. Its a vocation, not a lifestyle choice.

    “Nothing else you’ve said says he’s against strong families and caring for children”

    Gambling addiction and teen binge drinking are good for marriage and strong families? Pokies and liquor outlets on every corner are good for marriage and strong families?

    I agree that personal responsibility plays an important part, but a society that encourages lifestyle freedom over ordered liberty creates exactly the mess we have now.

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  37. Pete George (21,812 comments) says:

    Ok, so you are talking about strong marriage in your eyes, not neccesarily as others may see it. I think many people will accept that you don’t have to have kids to have a strong marriage.

    You can support of freedom of choice on gambling and alcohol – many people do either without much or any adverse affect on their family – and support strong families.

    It’s also possible to surmise that making gambling and drinking alcohol illegal could have a more adverse affect on families.

    Just like it’s possible to support some smacking of kids without promoting family and societal violence.

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  38. tristanb (1,133 comments) says:

    “AGAINST Civil Unions and Relationships Bills,
    FOR Parental Notification for teenagers seeking an abortion,
    AGAINST the Care of Children Bill,
    and FOR the Marriage Amendment Bill which defined marriage as one man and one woman.”

    Well, I thought ACT was about personal responsibility. It sounds as if the old Brethrenite is just another Churchie, forcing his views onto others – just like the Greens.

    If I wanted a Christian party I’d vote for Graham Capill or Brian Tamaki – but I don’t. If Brash keeps up with his “Banksie for Epsom” and “Bible-based laws”, then it looks as if ACT is unfortunately having another false start.

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  39. Chuck Bird (4,411 comments) says:

    tristanb, should not the politicians concentrate on mainly economic issues and moral issues be decided by binding referendum?

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  40. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    Pete:

    “Ok, so you are talking about strong marriage in your eyes, not neccesarily as others may see it.”

    No, I’m talking about marriage as it has been for much of the last fifteen hundred years and more, in other words marriage according to the traditional Western conception. Thats not merely “in my eyes” as you put. Yes, I kknow there have been some variotions, but “one man and one women for life” has always been the ideal. For me tradition trumps opinion.

    “I think many people will accept that you don’t have to have kids to have a strong marriage.”

    Have to? No. But when discussing marriage as a social institution then it is an important component.

    “You can support of freedom of choice on gambling and alcohol – many people do either without much or any adverse affect on their family – and support strong families.”

    I disagree, the two are mutually incompatable.

    “It’s also possible to surmise that making gambling and drinking alcohol illegal could have a more adverse affect on families.”

    I am not saying they should be illegal, I think they should be heavily regulated. DPF has consistently opposed such regulation.

    My point is that DPF’s lifestyle liberalism structures society around the whims of the individual, rather than around the family.

    Now there are some who would claim that what I am saying sounds like the Left, but the Left does the same thing, despite their claims to the contrary.

    The difference between a genuine Conservative and liberals of both the left and the right is that Conservatives place the family at the center of society and make the family and its well-being the starting point for all legislation. This requires thinking that trancends the current understandings of Left-Right politics.

    DPF is clearly a lifestyle liberal, and so he places the individual and his/her lifestyle choices at the center of society, and I think a reasonable argument can be made that when it comes to the policy crunch, in DPF’s thinking the individual always comes before the family.

    I am not making a personal attack on him, just noting what I think are the implications of his philosophical foundations for policy.

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  41. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    For the many people on the right who post here and seem to be confused about the issue:

    What is real Conservatism?

    1. A belief in a transcendent order, described variously as based in tradition, divine revelation, or natural law;
    2. An affection for the “variety and mystery” of human existence;
    3. A conviction that society requires orders and classes that emphasize “natural” distinctions;
    4. A belief that property and freedom are closely linked;
    5. A faith in custom, convention, and prescription, and
    6. A recognition that innovation must be tied to existing traditions and customs, which entails a respect for the political value of prudence

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell_Kirk

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traditionalist_conservatism

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  42. Act-Party-Member (1 comment) says:

    I fully agree with Don Brash. And Family First. The present policies are simply draining and are a total waste of taxpayer’s money. The only issue I disagree on with Bob McCoskrie is his opposition on euthanasia. Rufus (267) speaks about drunken bums. What ACT needs to do is oppose and stop all welfare completely. I am sure this will be the goal under our new leader Don Brash. Don proposes rising the retirement age. I fully agree with him. The idea is to abolish retirement payouts altogether. To solve the old age problem, anyone who becomes a burden to the taxpayer can be euthanized. Any drunken bum should also be put down. This is the most sensible approach to saving valuable taxpayers money.

    I also support Lee01 (65) about going back to the 1950’s. These times were excellent because all children were put in their place. There was no such thing as physical, psychological or sexual abuse. Any child who complained about their lot simply got a good whack with a wooden spoon. All of this supposed child abuse should be swept under the carpet where it belongs. All the historic ACC sexual abuse claims are at the cost to the taxpayer. This needs to stop. Yes, I certainly will be voting ACT in this coming election.

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