As part of NZ Catholic’s coverage of the 2020 General Election, seven significant political parties were invited to submit 300-word candidate statements explaining why you, our readers, should give your party vote to their particular party. Each party was asked to submit a statement by a candidate who is Catholic or of another Christian denomination. But, in the interests of democracy, the invitation did not exclude statements from candidates who have other religious affiliations, or none. NZ Catholic received replies from all the parties invited. Parties were informed that a 300-word limit would be strictly enforced. The order of the statements was selected at random. [Part 2]
Peter Sykes: Greetings. I come to the Green Party late in my journey for
social, environmental and economic justice. I came from a lineage of journeyers, settlers, seekers for hope. I come as a husband, father, and Puppa. I come from a journey of 40 years as a place-based community worker, 35 years ordained as a deacon in the Anglican Church, 30 years community work in Mangere, and 26 years with ME Family Services.
I have come to the Green Party because I see the need to maintain, and speed up, our commitment to the aspirations of the “living standards”, “intergenerational wellbeing”, and addressing global warming. The current Coalition Government has placed this on the agenda as we revision the future, especially as we weave through the impact and learning of Covid-19.
But I am concerned that the drive for the middle ground undermines the critical need to address social, environmental, and economic justice now.
The foundation for the Green Party’s plan for Aotearoa New Zealand is in its commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi, and its four key principles — ecological wisdom, social responsibility, appropriate decision-making and non-violence.
I see that the plans and policies spoken out by the Green Party resonate very strongly with my personal journey as a Christian, the work I am doing in the community and the inspirational work done by the social and environmental justice voices within the faiths and churches of Aotearoa New Zealand.
I can only encourage each of us to “think ahead” and party vote Green to ensure we keep moving towards healthy nature, fairer communities and a clean economy.
Simon O’Connor Faith and works, promise and delivery. Faith and works. Saint James in the second chapter of his letter made it clear that we need both, and
that faith without works is dead (James 2:26). In politics, the analogy is that what is promised must also be delivered. Put another way, we need to listen to what politicians say they will do, but also whether they have fulfilled what they said. National has a history of delivery. As evident in the last Government, when we
said we would do something, it was done. My challenge with the current Government is the disconnect between what the Prime Minister and others say, and what actually occurs — and I am not even thinking of the Covid-19 border testing failures. Housing, child poverty, or infrastructure projects — all were promised to be “solved”, and yet they have steadily got worse. We have more than 18,500 families (13,000 more than three years ago) waiting for a state home; child poverty statistics are worse; and promised roading and rail projects have stalled. Promises and delivery must go together, just like faith and works. I must also touch on life issues, for they are the most fundamental of all rights and underpin all others. Sadly, this Government has introduced a terribly extreme abortion law, personally sponsored by the Prime Minister; by and large supported the euthanasia law; and also sought to legitimise recreational cannabis use. While MPs from all parties will vote personally on these issues (other than the Greens who vote as a bloc), I encourage readers to note both who is introducing these laws, but also the voting record of your own MP. I also encourage you to engage your representatives and speak clearly about the matters most important to you and your family.
Martin Frauenstein: Never before has an election in New Zealand held such paramount importance; our very democracy and values are being threatened.
Einstein said, “The thinking that created the problem can never solve it.” New Conservative (NC) is the change in thinking to correct the situation for a better future.
For us Catholics, the dilemma runs even deeper, when we consider the voting history of all parties in Parliament.
We have a moral duty to not support that which is in direct opposition to the fundamental tenants of our faith; especially when clear alternatives exist. Christian values have seldom been represented by the major parties, leaving us without a voice. NC policies however, align very closely with those principles and offer new hope: NC opposes the radical abortion reform law that was passed during the first lockdown. NC values life at all stages and view the proposed euthanasia bill as having dangerous loopholes, opening a treacherous doorway to potential human rights abuses. NC believes that citizens’ initiated referenda should be binding! Failing to listen to the collective voice of the people flies in the face of democracy; insulting and devaluing voters. NC recognises Israel as a sovereign nation, seeking closer cooperation and establishing an embassy in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.
Much is being said about NC policies by various independent sources:
- https://www.familyfirst.org.nz/ – See Value your Vote 2020
- https://www.c4israel.org.nz/ – See 2020 Voters Guide
New Conservative can be trusted to represent Judeo-Christian principles and be your voice in Parliament. Party Vote New Conservative to boost the number of MPs representing your values.
I am a practising Catholic, a father, and small business owner. I stand for Life, Democracy, Justice, and Family. My Catholic Faith strongly and proudly directs my politics.
For more information: https://www.newconservative.org.nz/policies Party Vote New Conservative.
Damien O’Connor: Election campaigns are an opportunity for political parties to set out their vision for voters. This time around, Labour’s
message is simple: we need to keep up the momentum and keep New Zealand moving.
The whole world is battling with Covid-19, and no country is immune. In New Zealand, our focus is getting the latest resurgence under control and making sure we put in place immediate financial supports to cushion the economic blow.
As before, the best economic response is a strong health response. We know that stamping out the virus and protecting health means we can get our economy going again faster. As a team of five million, we’ve done it before, and we can do it again.
In addition to a strong health response, we have a detailed plan to help New Zealand bounce back.
Our five-point plan for economic recovery is built around five key principles: investing in our people, protecting and creating jobs, preparing for the future, backing small business, and positioning New Zealand globally.
It’s already well under way, and thanks to our strong response to Covid-19, New Zealand now has an economic head start. However, we know this pandemic will continue to be a challenge, and it’s really important that, as our recovery continues, we don’t leave anyone behind.
That’s what’s at stake this election, and that’s what our campaign is all about. We’re committed to rebuilding our economy, while also supporting those who are likely to be hardest hit by the ongoing impacts of Covid-19.
This election is going to be a challenging one, and the stakes are high. But we’ve seen what we can achieve as a team of five million, so let’s not put the brakes on now — let’s keep up the momentum and keep New Zealand moving.