Simon Bridges defends National support for Zero Carbon Bill

Peter Williams 11/11/2019

National Party leader and leader of the opposition Simon Bridges on Magic Mornings with Peter WIlliams.

Peter begins the interview off the back of a call from a listener upset with National for their support of the Zero Carbon Bill.

Simon remarks that he is unsure as to why callers are surprised as Simon has, on this show and others, backed the scientific consensus surrounding man made climate change and clarifies once again his position.

We take climate change seriously though we don’t think it’s an emergency.

"I like the framework of this bill but we’re going to make significant changes to it if we get into office in the next term."

The National Party leader then points the finger at Winston Peters and NZ First as having resisted all attempts to amend the bill. 

Simon then says that voters will ultimately have a decision to make, “do you want a centre-right Government that believes in less taxes and regulation, that’s going to build infrastructure, hard on law and order, not weak on welfare or do you want the same old that we have at the moment.”

Peter holds Simon to account asking if he sees the frustration that callers have voiced when Simon himself has called the bill flawed, Judith Collins going one further to say “deeply flawed”, and yet he still supported it.

Peter asks, “if you’re not happy with a piece of legislation then why the hell do you vote for it?”

Simon clarifies and insists that there are elements of the bill that he does support, chiefly the set up of an independent panel to advise the Government on policy decisions regarding Climate Change, Simon insists that the framework of the bill is sound.

The opposition leader singles out the emissions targets as an element he particularly disagrees with before doubling down on his criticisms of Winston Peters as having blocked any progress toward amending the bill where both the Green Party and Labour were amenable to negotiating the bill.

The interview then moves to the establishment of the new party headed by Vernon Tava as he fields a new conservation focused party The Sustainable New Zealand Party and how viable his attempts to make a pro-business sustainable political party.

You can listen to the full interview above.