Herald interviews David Clark

January 25th, 2013 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

Audrey Young interviews . Some extracts:

What’s been the most rewarding part of the past year?

Representing the local constituents in Dunedin North and being able to make a difference in specific situations where they have fallen through the cracks for one reason or another, or the system hasn’t quite served them properly, and having the ability to intervene and raise questions with local agencies or the relevant minister and to get the support they need for their circumstance.

The private member’s bills have been pretty satisfying, too, particularly getting the one Mondayising Waitangi Day and Anzac Day through to select committee and hopefully beyond.

I don’t think the Monday issue is a big issue, but I do think the change mooted by Clark is sensible.

What MP outside your party impresses you?

Kevin Hague [Green]. Kevin is impressive in that he has been able to walk a line where he is seen as very reasonable, but also is able to challenge injustices where he sees them.

I have a lot of time for Kevin Hague also. He’s very good at working with others to advance issues he believes in.

Name one of your heroes outside politics.

I guess this sounds a bit cheesy but ultimately the Biblical Jesus is something of a hero to me, unsurprising given that I’ve got a background as a minister of religion. He was someone who stood up for the poor and vulnerable and was concerned about social justice issues and not afraid to take on the authorities of the day to ensure fairer outcomes for those who were struggling.

I wonder how many ministers or ex-ministers have been MPs over the years? I can think of half a dozen at least.

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9 Responses to “Herald interviews David Clark”

  1. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,888 comments) says:

    Were any of them any better at being MPs than they were at being Ministers of religion?

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  2. Pete George (23,476 comments) says:

    David’s Mondayise bill being drawn first up (I think he actually inherited the bill from Grant Robertson) was very lucky, a non-contentious issue where the (albeit slim) numbers happened for him, but you have to use whatever luck you get and run with it in politics like anything else.

    David also has some ‘luck’ being seen as a new MP with potential amongst a severely shrunk and short of fresh talent caucus.

    I also agree on Kevin Hague (being a good MP, not everything he promotes).

    And good on David for being up front about who his outside politics hero is. It’s hard to argue against the general perception of what Christ stands for. A few more MPs would benefit from following some of those principles a bit more, whether they are religious or not.

    If David learns well he should be placed higher than his last position of 59 on the Labour list.

    The trick for him is to learn to be himself and not what he is modeled to be.

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  3. kowtow (8,323 comments) says:

    A presbyterian minister supporting Wall’s travesty of marriage bill.He also civilly unioned Robertson.

    Knox must be turning in his grave.

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  4. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I have issues with the first and third of these statements.

    The first demonstrates the lamentable outcome of instituting a professional political caste of mediocre full-time politicians. Members of Parliament are legislators – they should serve their constituencies by deliberating and debating on laws and to the extent they have time on their hands they should lead normal lives like the rest of us. There is no good reason for MPs to take on ‘case-work’ by using their office to engage in special pleading and advocacy on behalf of constituent clients.

    The third portrays a profound ignorance of the Christian religion by somehow re-imagining its founder as some ancient version of Barack Obama – that the “Biblical Jesus” came to establish a welfare state rather than show us how to get to Heaven. Then, from memory, Mr Clark is a Presbyterian – hardly the most intellectually rigorous denomination.

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  5. Viking2 (11,413 comments) says:

    I wonder how many ministers or ex-ministers have been MPs over the years? I can think of half a dozen at least.
    and a few more shackled to the Cross by their belief’s at the expense of Joe Public who doesn’t necessarily share them.

    Which is in a round about way, the point I was making yesterday when I was asked to give up drugs.
    Kama’s a bitch.

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  6. BlairM (2,321 comments) says:

    I guess this sounds a bit cheesy but ultimately the Biblical Jesus is something of a hero to me, unsurprising given that I’ve got a background as a minister of religion. He was someone who stood up for the poor and vulnerable and was concerned about social justice issues and not afraid to take on the authorities of the day to ensure fairer outcomes for those who were struggling.

    Good choice of hero, but for all the wrong reasons. Could Clark point to the verses where Jesus “took on the authorities” to “ensure fairer outcomes for those who were struggling”? I seem to recall Jesus using his own initiative to help those people, rather than getting the Romans or the Sanhedrin to do it.

    Jesus’ socialism was an individual, voluntary socialism – he used his own resources, and those freely given to him, not resources coerced or taken from taxes or taxpayers. He was not a political activist, he was concerned with changing people’s hearts. The Left wing view of Jesus as some sort of political crusader for “social justice” is completely erroneous.

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  7. BlairM (2,321 comments) says:

    I can’t think of any clergyman who has made a good MP. They’ve all been pretty pants.

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  8. Graeme Edgeler (3,283 comments) says:

    I don’t think the Monday issue is a big issue, but I do think the change mooted by Clark is sensible.

    The type of change that can actually be made in a members bill advanced by a member of the opposition :-)

    I wonder how many ministers or ex-ministers have been MPs over the years? I can think of half a dozen at least.

    We have quite a few in the current Parliament!

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  9. kowtow (8,323 comments) says:

    Cheesy?

    It’s cheesy for a reverend to apologise about admiring Christ.

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