Christmas is quickly approaching. In just three weeks we will wrap up Parliament for 2019 and soon after welcome an election year.
This year I’ve attended openings, expos, graduations, awards, festivals and fundraisers. I have been busy with work throughout the electorate and with my NZ Maori Tourism portfolio. There are regular meetings with councils, business and community leaders, reporters and radio stations, as well as weekly Select Committee hearings, Parliamentary and National Party work, all of which has me travelling throughout Aotearoa, New Zealand and, at times, overseas.
I debated in the Chamber on the significant Abortion Legislation Bill and End of Life Choice Bill. I have long advocated for the welfare and protection of our most vulnerable and I have a responsibility as a legislator to protect those most susceptible to harm. I have used my experience and knowledge of the law to focus on the facts and issues of what the proposed legislation will do – diminish due care, regard and responsibility to and for others.
The highlight of my role is meeting and engaging with the constituents. Whether through appointments in my electorate office or out and about in the community. I have felt the atmosphere and passion at marches and protests on Parliament, from climate activists, farmers under pressure and scrutiny from the Government, pro-life advocates and White Ribbon – men against violence.
As a National MP, I am part of a party that challenges and holds this coalition Government to account. Part of that has been to seek feedback from the public on a range of issues from primary industries to social services. This is part of the biggest policy development process by an opposition ever. As Whanganui’s MP of choice I keep front of mind that whatever I do and wherever I go, I am always advocating for and representing Whanganui’s interests. I have lived in and served Whanganui for 50+ years and despite the strategic decision to hold the Labour Party conference in our city, I and National will be ready to hit the ground running in 2020.