Key pushes for four-year terms
Wed, 06 Feb 2013 6:13p.m.
By Tova O'Brien
The Prime Minister is using his spotlight at Waitangi to push the idea of a fixed four-year term for the Government, and he's got support from his political opponents.
The crowds at Waitangi are a good sounding board for politicians, so John Key's using the event to push the boat out on this pet project of his – extending the Government's reign to four years, with a fixed date.
“I think it makes a lot more sense to know when the date is and it makes a lot more sense to have it for four years,” he says.
But Mr Key would need either 75 percent support from MPs or the majority in a referendum.
Governments have tried twice before to extend the term, but both attempts bombed.
In 1967, 68 percent of people opted to stick with three years. In 1990 it was up 1 percent to 69.
But Mr Key may have more luck lining up MPs.
Opposition leader David Shearer says he agrees with the idea.
“In many ways it's a very short period of time,” he says. “It's too long in opposition I have to say!”
Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples seems in favour.
“That’s probably a good idea too. You just seem to get started and bang, it’s election time,” he says.
And Greens co-leader Metiria Turei says she thinks the public would support the move.
“Most of the public agree it's better for governments to have more time to implement policy rather than going from election to election.”
However Mana leader Hone Harawira isn’t convinced.
“As long as I’m not in Government I think it's a ratshit idea,” he says.
Australian terms can be no longer than three years. In the United States, presidential elections are held every four years, and it's the same for Canada’s parliament.
French presidents enjoy a five-year term, and in the United Kingdom the election date can be held at any time within five years.
Recommendations for or against a four-year term will be made by the end of this year when a constitutional review is completed.
But any change would be slow, and not possible before the next election.
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7/02/2013 11:35:32 a.m.
How about an election system we can trust.
7/02/2013 9:44:55 a.m.
Just Me wrote:
I will list the reasons why I would be against a 4 year terms for politicians especially this current government:
IRD/ACC/WINZ/GCSB privacy breaches.
The planned Teacher/pupil class ratio.
Pike River broken promises 1 year out from the general election 2011.
Cuppagate - older population dying off so less votes for Winston
Novopay-NO PAY - 700 teachers not paid correct this time is 700 people too many.
The almost 5 day delay in the Rena running aground.
CERA ex-National Party members paid $1000.00per day.
David Bain compensation claim and Judith Collins's delaying tactics.
John Key doing the "slitting the throat" action prior to election 2011 just after the Debating chamber Jumper event.
Tax breaks for Hollywood.Will FTA with India Bollywood exepct the same deals?
GST raised to 15%.
Back-dated pay increases for ALL MPs whilst we are expected,as quoted by Bill English,to live within our means.NZers had to do some financial belt-tightening as he(English)once said.
Split donations wrangle.
State Asset sales eg foreshore and seabed.
Failure to listen to the Maori Council and Waitangi Tribunal in regards to Water Rights and Asset sales.
John Key saying David Beckham is "As thick as Batshit".
Crafar Farms sold to the Chinese despite NZers offering to buy the farms.
John Key often taking so many protection officers around the place with him e.g on holiday to Hawaii.
I am sure I have missed other items out and sure others in this forum would be able to add to this list.
If this goveernment gets in for 4 years as from next election day then more NZers will leave this country.
There is that well known quote: Whomever is the last one to leave NZ please turn out the light.
7/02/2013 8:22:04 a.m.
Electoral changes never happen over night. How long did it take to get changed to MMP?So suggesting the changes wont be for Key himself, but all the head-up-backside people are too stuppid to know their ass from their elbow, so have their usual personal attacks posted than address the 3 or 4 year political term.
7/02/2013 8:14:55 a.m.
It's an interesting concept by John Key, considering his own government failed to deliver nearly all of what they promised us during 2 election campaigns in 5 years.
7/02/2013 8:04:53 a.m.
Article should read "Politicians want more job security as they struggle with public opinion"
The less elections they have to go through the more they are to be held unaccountable. 3 Years is plenty of time to make any change in government and if they think it isn't enough why not remove some of the holidays they seem to enjoy. They are on holiday for 1/4 of the year. Remove that and they will really see change happen.
6/02/2013 10:16:06 p.m.
In political terms this ain't good timing. More effective to try and sway the public opinion when you haven't been screwing up things on a near weekly basis...Twice before this has come up for a referendum in the sixties and was rejected both times by more than 60% of the vote...good luck Joe Key....he's a funny guy really.
6/02/2013 8:57:14 p.m.
I like the idea of four year terms. Three years isn't quite enough to implement changes therefore people vote in another 3 year term anyway. Eleections cost a lot of money so by stretching it out another year would save money
6/02/2013 8:56:44 p.m.
no way jose! wrote:
The thought of four years of John Key - enough to get the rest of the country to leave in dispair! The current three years are already two years and eleven months and thirty days too many!
6/02/2013 8:53:45 p.m.
More I hear from Shearer, More I prefer Greens or think why not John Key, as he is just not good enough PM for me.
6/02/2013 7:29:35 p.m.
I like the american idea. 5 year terms but after 2 terms the prime minister must retire.
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