Wednesday, February 21, 2007

smacking bill looks set to pass

The Maori Party has announced that they will support Sue Bradford's smacking bill through the committee stages irregardless of what their constituency thinks, but it is going to be close. This means that the Greens, Labour, Progressive and the Maori Party look set to oppose National's amendment. That means four votes have to change - Peter Dunne and the NZ First MPs, who will have to support Chester Borrows amendment to allow Sue Bradford to carry out her threat and smack the bill out of Parliament.

If the amendment is not passed and the bill gets to the third reading, I recon it will have 63 votes.Now, if only Helen Clark would let her MPs use their conscience votes.

Update Apparently, two NZ First MPs - probably Barbara Stewart and Doug Woollerton, voted for the bill so they can vote for the Borrows amendment. If they do so, and the amendment fails, it will be interesting to see their vote for the third reading.

Anyway, if the bill is not intended to make light smacking an offence it is poorly drafted. If Bradford does not think people should be criminalised for light smacking then her trenchant opposition to Borrows' amendment makes no sense. Bradford's continual deliberate confounding of light smacking with assault makes it very clear what her intent is.


Matthew said...

Hi Dave,

I think you have very slightly misinformed us here:

"So what has to happen is that all but one NZ First MP has to support Chester Borrows amendment to prevent the bill being pulled - with Peter Dunne having to change his vote and oppose the bill also.

If that doesn't happen the bill is through."

If all but one NZF MP supports the amendment, then the amendment wont be passed: the Bill then goes through (and is prevented from being pulled as you say correctly). You then say that if that doesn't happen, i.e. the amendment is passed, then the Bill is either

(a) pulled (which contradicts your statement that the Bill is through), or
(b) the Bill is through, in its amended form.

Given the fact that you think the Bill will be pulled if the amendment is successfull, I think you mean (a) above, which means you are contradicting yourself when you say the Bill is through. I think you need to clarify your statement :)


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Dave said...

Matthew, Ive amended my post