The NZ Outdoors Party, United Future, Ban 1080 Party, Conservative Party, Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party and NZ People’s Party have issued this joint press release to remind the mainstream media that the definition of a minor political party does not begin and end with Gareth Morgan.
“We are the real minority parties”, said David Haynes, Co-Leader of the NZ Outdoors Party, “We do not have paid staff, paid researchers or a salary for doing this, in fact it costs us all huge amounts of our time and money. We do this for the conviction of our beliefs but we are given no recognition by media corporations and are angry that the potential political interests of over one million people that we collectively represent are being systematically ignored by the media”.
Irinka Britnell, of the Legalise Cannabis Party comments “This is supposed to be a contest of ideas, not a contest of who has the most resources”. Clyde Graf, Co-Leader of the Ban 1080 party said “We understand TVNZ’s size-based criteria for coverage of a party but we all start somewhere. We’re all registered, have equally valid policies and hence should have a fair crack of the whip”. Anil Kumar Sharma of the NZ People’s Party and Leighton Baker of the Conservatives have similarly expressed their frustration in being sidelined by journalists.
United Future Party Leader Damian Light noted that, “While United Future has been invited to some debates, the majority of the media seems intent on focusing on the old parties to the detriment of voters. With MMP it’s only fair that all parties are accorded the same opportunity to present their ideas.”
If TVNZ truly wishes to promote the democratic interests of the New Zealand population, it would hold a real minority party debate.