Prime Minister Christopher Luxon said that he “can’t be any clearer” concerning his stance on the controversial Treaty Principles Bill, despite ACT leader David Seymour seemingly believing that he may change his mind.
Seymour told 1News that he believed the prime minister was “clearly nervous” about the bill and that Waitangi Day had only made him more so.
He added that ultimately, politicians in a democracy will follow the public will, adding that National had changed their minds regarding ACT’s Three Strikes bill before.
“He’s said he won’t support it, other times he’s said he will, or he might. I think it’s important that we don’t get too far ahead of ourselves and listen to what people say,” Seymour said.
The proposed bill would see the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi redefined. The highly contentious bill was part of ACT’s coalition deal with National but Luxon has said the party has “no intention” to support it beyond the first reading and select committee.
When asked about Seymour’s comments, Luxon said today that the National Party has a “strongly held view” that the bill was something they would not support.
“We do not want to do a referendum on the Treaty Principles Bill.
“The reality of the coalition agreement is that we’ve come to a compromise.”
Senior Labour MP Ginny Anderson told Breakfast this morning that the Treaty Principles Bill was “divisive” and a waste of resources.
“I think most New Zealanders I speak to are sick and tired of this taking up time and resources when Christopher Luxon has confirmed it has no hope of seeking and receiving a second reading.”
But National MP Chris Bishop said it was part and parcel of the coalition agreement National has with ACT.
“National didn’t get the votes to govern by itself. We have to rely on New Zealand First and ACT to govern… David [Seymour] has a strong, alongside his ACT colleagues, view on this piece of legislation, and National has an equally strong view.”