David Seymour and Brooke van Velden
ACT's David Seymour and Brooke van Velden Credit Getty

OPINION: Why we need a strong ACT - by David Seymour

Opinion 12/10/2020

This op-ed is written by ACT party leader David Seymour.

OPINION: This campaign has been quite a ride. Through it all, ACT has been relentlessly focussed on the issues that matter to New Zealanders. If you haven’t voted yet, and you’re considering giving your party vote to ACT, here are just a few reasons why that’s a good idea.

With just one MP, ACT has achieved a lot. We’ve stood up against bad policy. Many of the votes in Parliament have been 119-1. Whether it was the rushed firearms laws which won’t actually make New Zealand safer, or the Zero Carbon Act which will see us forced to make significantly deeper emissions cuts than our trading partners.

ACT also worked constructively with politicians across all parties to pass the End of Life Choice Act. With more ACT MPs, we will hold all of the other parties accountable.

Covid’s been tough. Businesses and households have had to pivot to prosper through 2020. We admire the entrepreneurs and innovators who’ve made the best of this time. For others, the impacts have been severe. 

Whichever way this year has affected you, we all need a better public health response. We have to accept this virus may not be going anywhere for some time and get smarter about how we adapt. We need to maintain elimination with no more lockdowns and safely reconnect with the rest of the world.

ACT has led the debate for New Zealand to become Taiwan-smart about Covid-19. It means a dedicated Epidemic Response Unit instead of a jury-rigged Ministry of Health. It means that government sets and enforces clear rules of the game for the private sector to get on with it. It means managing risk appropriately, working with the private sector to use better technology, and comparing our response with the best, not scaring the people with comparisons to the worst.

The most important issue this election is undoubtedly the debt.

Politicians need to live within the same rules as everyone else. Many households and businesses have had to spend on necessities and cut out waste. The government needs to do the same, but Treasury now forecasts 15 years of deficits. Every other party is treating the election as a bidding war with borrowed money. ACT’s interactive Debt Destroyer puts the choices to balance the budget in front of the public.

A Party Vote for ACT will ensure more accountability. I have a talented team ready to come to Parliament. Seven of our top ten are business owners who understand the struggles New Zealand businesses are facing.

Accountability and transparency have never been more important. New Zealand needs a genuinely independent team to hold them all accountable.

This op-ed is written by ACT party leader David Seymour.