NZ First will abstain in gay marriage vote
Tue, 31 Jul 2012 3:47p.m.
By Lloyd Burr
New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says his party will abstain from voting on the same-sex marriage bill and is calling for a referendum instead.
His party’s stance on the issue was unclear last week but they decided their position during a caucus meeting this morning.
Mr Peters says he is calling for a referendum because he doesn’t have confidence MPs can make the right decision.
“NZ First’s position has always been that these serious issues should be decided by the public of this country and not a few temporary empowered politicians,” he says.
Mr Peters was asked: “So all NZ First MPs will abstain from voting?”
“I’ve just said that, that’s what our position is and we are united on that,” he replied.
He wouldn’t rule out his party voting down the bill instead of abstaining but said they definitely wouldn’t vote in favour of it.
The veteran MP wouldn’t divulge his own opinion on whether same-sex couples should be allowed to get married because it would “twist the public debate”.
However, one of his MPs last week told reporters he was against same-sex marriage because it was about “preserving the institution of marriage”.
“I’ve got nothing against gays but to me, marriage is an important institution of its own,” MP Richard Prosser said.
Conservative Party leader Colin Craig - who is not an MP - also wants a referendum on the issue. He says he is against the idea of gay marriage because homosexuals have shorter life-spans and aren't good role models for children.
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21/08/2012 5:15:49 p.m.
Curwen from the NZ First Youth Party is a nice guy, with his head generally screwed on well. Unfortunately some of the other MP's (and now regrettably Mr. Peters himself) are letting the whole party down.
Mr. Peters can claim that his party has no position on this issue, but it is quite clear that he is siding with religious conservatives.
21/08/2012 5:11:56 p.m.
Rick, unfortunately your argument is invalid. Regarding incest, there are firmly understood biological reasons for abstaining from incest - most notably the heightened risk of recessive genetic diseases if one were to conceive. If, however, you were to agree not to conceive then I would have no problem with this so long as it were between two consenting adults. I am also fine with polygamy, this was the norm for a great deal of time in many different cultures (and still is in some), as well as across other species.
Clearly murder is not comparable as it inflicts objective suffering upon another individual. This obviously contrasts against sexual relations between consenting adults, not resulting in suffering.
One can certainly be 'truly logical' in ones moral code, if such a code is based on objectively demonstrable facts.
4/08/2012 8:06:17 p.m.
I have no problem with gay marriage, so long as those who promote and practise it are completely consistent. You have said that marriage is a human construct, and of course, outdated. Therefore, new moral codes have been developed, and society must move foward and accept them. Well then you must carry your thinking right through to completion. You cannot simply make this one change. You must allow anything. There are, by your very definition, no moral absolutes so you cannot disallow me to express myself. I have my own morals, perhaps more advanced and developed than yours. I don’t accept those morals and values put upon me by society. Therefore, you must accept the views of those who believe in incest, polygamy and so on. These people, like you, do no accept the moral code slavishly adopted by narrow minded people. They do not accept a merely human construct, some form of moral constraint from others. People should be free to act as they please. But you cite ‘love’ as the binding moral code by which nobody can judge your actions. Alright then, please tell me, what is love? It is a mere human construct, no more evil, or good (because you say there is no evil or no good) than murder, rape, theft, bestiality, brutality? Of course, you will not abide by this. For you say it is ‘wrong’ for someone to rape our murder you or your loved one. But see, your logic has failed you. You must be consistent. Who are you to judge that person? They are expressing themselves. Just as you have rejected all moral absolutes or codes. You say we have evolved to a more civilised society that than that now. Really?? Every history book that I have read says this is what we have always been doing, and still are doing. So you must jettison any moral constructs that exist, and be truly logical, and embrace the amoral society that you are seeking in full not pick and choose from it those things that ‘seem’ best to you.
4/08/2012 3:45:18 p.m.
Craig Young wrote:
And yes, how much will this projected referendum cost? Which social services will be cut because the raving right wants to have one? The unneccessary MMP referendum cost $11 million, for example.
1/08/2012 10:21:18 a.m.
I have always had problems with the concept of binding referenda. Referenda cost money for their exercise and during a recession, that money needs to be reserved for public health and education services.
1/08/2012 9:39:02 a.m.
Whats is wrong with gay marriage, they are just same sex couples who have chosen a different path, people may not like it but everyone does things other people disagree with and that is life.
1/08/2012 1:42:40 a.m.
Peters is in rare form here; this seemingly trivial matter could end Key's career, and he knows it. Now that WInston has pulled this trump card, Key is exposed: if he follows, he's a follower; if he votes in favour, he loses his religious and conservative voters; if he votes against, he may appear 'outdated' and lose his youngsters and corporate left-wingers. Winston has all the cards now, thanks to his shrewd judgment of NZ values, where the majority don't mind gays but would rather keep some substance to the family structure if it has to be a choice - ay least in the privacy of their own voting booth. Key seems to be a 'possum in the headlights' on this issue that is screaming down on him like a ten tonne truck with a huge sign reading 'end of your career' on the side of it.
1/08/2012 12:42:47 a.m.
Good on you Peter.. and you are right it has to be calling for a referendum..
31/07/2012 6:34:16 p.m.
last hoorah wrote:
A perfect model of the capitalist financial scheme model relating to Govt.NZ asset sales.
To bad for all the mum and dad shareholders.....
31/07/2012 6:05:06 p.m.
Why fence-sit on this issue? Either vote for or against the bill. Or call for a referendum. Opting out of a decision on a moral issue is cowardly.
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