This may surprise some, but I am appalled to see the NZ First Party President threatening to demote on the party list, MPs Brian Donnelly and Doug Woolerton because they are voting in favour of Sue Bradford’s bill.
The bill is a conscience issue. Just because Helen had trampled on this convention is no reason for other parties to do so. I don’t know Doug Woolerton but do know Brian Donnelly reasonably well and have even chatted to him on the Section 59 issue at an airport lounge. Brian is a very decent sincere person who holds genuine views on the bill. He should be allowed to vote on it without threats from his party president.
What angers me isn’t the bill itself, or the MPs who support it. It’s the dishonesty of those MPs who claim it does not ban smacking, when it clearly does. And the actions of Clark in forcing Labour MPs to vote for it, when some of them do not wish to. Oh yes and in trying to ram it through under urgency. But I can respect a genuine difference of opinion on the bill and its amendments.