Thursday, April 19, 2007

I don’t want to play with you anymore, John

Further to yesterday’s post, Sue Bradford says she won’t meet with John Key over her smacking bill because Key wants her to admit that her bill effectively outlaws correction. But Bradford’s response is surprisingly ignorant.
I now find that unless I agree to change my bill in the way that he wants even before the talks begin, he seems no longer willing to meet with me.

But Key is not refusing to meet with her, nor is he asking Bradford to change her bill before the meeting, he is merely asking her to publicly interpret its intent in line with the view of the Law Commission – i.e. this bill bans correction - or plainly state why it doesn’t.

If she’s not going to do that for purely political reasons, the talks won’t happen and just confirms what everyone knows, that this bill bans corrective smacking, Bradford knows it, the public knows she knows it and also knows that she hasn’t got the balls to admit it.

Helen Clark also knows the bill bans correction but wont publically admit it either, which is perhaps why she didn’t want the Government to take the bill on. That refusal to admit the facts early on in the piece was a political mistake and led to the Labour PR cock-up on this bill.


Graeme said...

Okay - I've got to disagree on this one.

I agree with you and Key that the bill would criminalise a light smack, but what is the point with asking for this public admission from Bradford, who obviously disagrees?

Surely a satisfactory solution from a meeting between Key and Bradford could include Bradford saying something like:

"I do not want to criminalise light smacking. It has never been my intention to criminalise ordinary parents. I do not believe that the bill as amended by the select committ criminalised light smacking.

However, I recognise that John Key and other people disagree with my interpretation of the bill as currently amended. Even though I do not think the bill as written does criminalise parents, to allay fears and ensure broad support for this bill - the three main purposes of which there is near unanimous support for - I am happy to adopt the new proposal he brought to the meeting.

My bill did not criminalise light smacking, nor does the new wording he proposed, but this new wording does not send the terrible message I believe Chester Borrows' amendment would have.

I think my wording would be fine and achieve all the purposes on which we all agree. I think Key's wording would too and am happy to support to ensure that the purpose of my bill, which I never intended to criminalise smacking, is made absolutely clear to everyone."

Asking Clark or Bradford to admit the bill presently bans smacking is unnecessary. Agreement to new wording can be obtained without agreement on what the bill presently does.

Lucyna said...

Graeme, it may be unnecessary to force an admission from Bradford or Clark, but it's good politics.

Dave said...

The reason the discussion will never go the way you have described is, as I said in my post, I think that Bradford actually believes that the bill has the potential to criminalise ight smacking, and to say she does not believe that it would, when she in fact does, would mean that she is not telling teh truth, and to do so in discussions like this is not helpful.

What Key could have asked Bradford to do is to explain why she and the law commission disagree.

Agreement to new wording can be obtained without agreement on what the bill presently does only if the both parties are honest and open.

Lewis said...

Either way, it was a brilliant move politically for Key.

Heine said...

But we'd all be lying if we are really shocked by this. Sue Bradford isn't one for dealing rationally with the right!

Anonymous said...

I beg to differ.
Sue Btradford is not stupid, she is bright and cunning as is Helen Clark.
They don't want to admit that the bill bans smacking because then they would be held clearly accountable for their actions.
They are trying to have their cake and eat it.

they are both liars.
you don't have to say something to lie, often by not saying soemthing you can lie.
as legalists they will say "but we never said it".
in short they aren't acting from a position of integrity.

Will the voter hold them accountabel.