respond to questions on faith, marriage, abortion,
parental notification, euthanasia, loan sharks, same sex adoption and
marriage, law and order, child abuse, the anti-smacking law, and more!
(find out what they really said rather than just what the media
reported). Here's a summary that we prepared to give you an idea of the
depth of the questioning
agnostic. Leads life by christian principles. Believes in having spirit
which lives on in family/children. Doesn’t believe in life after death
but respects those who do
Not atheist –
believes in force
beyond mankind. Not a person of faith in terms of believing in
afterlife. Born and bred as Roman Catholic. Still attends 3-4 times per
year. Life has been shaped by christian values and beliefs.
Society influenced by many values. MP for a multi-faith electorate.
Believes that values of great faiths of world are similar. But agrees
that our society is based on christian values.
Key's leadership has been characterised by party votes for conscience
issues; Goff's has been characterised by free votes
Supports conscience votes e.g. alcohol, drugs, Says 9 years of Clark
govt had lots of conscience votes due to social engineering. National
hasn’t pushed that agenda – not the raison d’etre of the government
Supports conscience votes e.g. alcohol, sex, gambling; Makes a decision
on best info and what he personally believes is right rather than what
constituents necessarily want
Both Key and Goff voted against defining marriage as man
and woman (Marriage Amendment Bill). Key voted against Civil Unions but
did vote for the Relationships bill; Goff voted for both.
defines as enduring partnership. Govt won’t promote gay marriage. Not
sure whether he’d vote for it if it came to a vote thought. Doesn’t
believe civil unions have undermined marriage. Agrees academic research
shows that marriage benefits children, education, social outcomes, and
is a supporter of marriage. But doesn’t believe that marriage alone
protects children from child abuse / domestic violence. Doesn’t believe
current social welfare is delivering.
commitment between 2 people. Labour introduced civil unions to allow
same sex partnerships so as to keep marriage distinct. Prefers long
term commitment with legal safeguards, no matter what the gender.
Preference is traditional ‘man and woman’ but unapologetically strong
supporter of civil union. Believer in marriage but knows de facto
couples who have done well
Faith based parenting /
funding outcomes, fund what works e.g. Destiny, Parents Inc
based on quality – not faith or any other premise. Not aware of
concerns about funding for Parents Inc.
Key voted for parental notification; Goff against
Hasn’t read the recent judgment re the unborn having no right to life.
Doesn’t want to actively encourage or pressure people to have
abortions. If daughter was raped by gang member, would want her to have
abortion. Agrees that abortion is a life-changing event with potential
psychological impact - may lead to greater damage and risk for the
But supports parental notification. Unless very good
reason, parents should be informed. National won’t campaign on changing
parental notification. May need to look at ‘informed consent’-type law
if evidence shows people are being pressured in to abortions
Law says no abortions allowed at 'arbitrary' points of 12 or 20 weeks
depending on circumstances. Traditionally says life begins at point of
'quickening'. Wishes there were less than 18,000 abortions. Trying to
enforce abortion laws will mean people going to Australia or
back-street abortions. Agrees that law is being carried out differently
to what was intended. Important that women considering abortion are
able to consider options and are not pressured – not sure that
legislation would work.
Parental notification – previously
opposed. Believes every good family – notification would happen
automatically. Counsellor has obligation of confidentially – although
agrees that may not apply to suicide. Daughter may not seek help.
Acknowledges it is a complex issue.
same sex adoption but where one adult is biological parent
more about environment than whether parent is biological. Stability and
love more important than gender.
If good parents are criminalized, will change the law – stands by that.
Believes in the compromise. But acknowledges that law is dog’s
breakfast. Believes parents will smack their children. Parents
understand difference between smack and child abuse.
parents are criminalized, will change the law – stands by that. Should
be no charges against parent for lightly smacking. Law says there are
better alternatives. Knows difference between smacking and serious
physical hurt. Politicians wanted to send a message to stop more
Both have received copies of "My Mummy's A Criminal"!
Child Abuse and Inquiry
CYF damned if they do respond, damned if they don’t. Lot of research
around child abuse - action now required from government. Alcohol and
especially drugs plays major role. Non-biological adults in house major
risk. Supports removing right to cone of silence.
rule out Commission of Inquiry. Not sure Royal Commission will find
answers that integrated approach by govt wouldn’t solve. One of the
most serious problems in the country. Drug and alcohol abuse /
dysfunctional families / intergenerational social dysfunction /
financial stress. Would set up integrated system of early intervention.
Would need to be persuaded that CYF Independent Complaints Authority
would benefit, but not ruled out.
Prisons v Rehabilitation
National govt has done more than many governments to protect people. 18
law changes. Victims are not statistics on paper – they’re real people.
Govt spends $1b per year locking people up.
we breed people who do criminal acts. Need to be tough on crime, but
also tough on causes of crime. Need to spend as much on at-risk
families as we do on prisons. Believes 2002 Sentencing Act that he
sponsored is working. In principle, parole after 1/3’rd of sentence -
but argues not happening in practice. Thought 3 Strikes was inflexible.
3 Strikes was slogan that appealed.
Key voted to raise the drinking age last time; Goff didn't. Both voted
against a Green-sponsored bill banning liquor advertising
Acknowledges binge drinking culture. Daughter in France says that it is
really socially unacceptable to get drunk. Supports split age purchase
age – more control around licensed premises. Believes that raising
drinking age to 20 may be problematic. Staggered at lack of parental
supervision, curfews etc. Parents feel under pressure to allow alcohol.
Agrees that liberalization of alcohol laws in 1989 and 1999 may not
Will vote for
split-age. Wants to restrict
liquor outlets especially in poorer areas – give more power to
communities. Binge drink culture also applies to adults. Doesn’t
believe the binge drinking problem is a contemporary problem. Wants
minimum price. More courage needed from all political parties.
Both voted against bill decriminalising marijuana for medicinal purposes
Both Key and Goff supported previous bill introduced to decriminalise
euthanasia - was defeated at 1st reading
Voted for it last time. Would vote for it again to a select committee.
Not sure that he would vote for it all the way i.e. a law change.
(contrary to media reports!)
Voted for it
last time because
believed worthy of discussion. Would need to be assured that
decriminalization didn’t lead to abuse. Would want the right to make
the decision for himself.
Key voted against
decriminalisation of prostitution; Goff voted for. Key supported 2
recent bills to outlaw street prostitution; Goff supported one but not
outlawing of street prostitution – more
power to local councils. Doesn’t want brothel next door to family home.
Would need to look at more detail
prostitution or want to encourage it but believes that safety and
control important rather than pretending it doesn’t exist. Has sent
bill to ban street prostitution to select committee but doesn’t
guarantee supporting beyond that. Believes it’s undesirable for
brothels to be near homes, schools, churches – but up to Councils to
use appropriate bylaws (despite the current law not allowing Councils
to ban residential brothels!)
Key voted against a private members bill from Labour MP to regulate
loan sharks; Goff supported
Minister of Justice investigating that. Didn’t support Labour’s
proposal. Govt may adopt National MP’s Sam Lotu-iiga’s private members
immoral that 70-80% interest loans to
families who have no hope of repaying loans. Will support Sam
Lotu-Iiga’s private members bill to select committee. Needs to be
cross-party solution on this.
Key has consistently supported liberalisation of easter trading laws;
Goff has opposed 2 out of 3 recent attempts.
can open, some can’t – totally inconsistent. But shouldn’t totally
liberalise e.g. Good Friday
Supports special days of the year. Acknowledges inconsistencies –
should deal with anomalies, not have open slather. Human values come
before commercial values.
Key: Doesn’t like
personal attacks in politics. Believes they achieve nothing.
Disciplined in scheduling time with wife to maintain strength of
Goff: Also doesn’t
like personal attacks.
Acknowledged supportive wife. Wishes families of politicians were
allowed a little more privacy