Greetings again everybody. Under-secretary for stuff David Seymour here just with a few words of advice for any budding new MPs out there.
As you may or may not know, all the ministers in the latest Key government were sworn in under a blood moon this week. As you might suspect, there were the usual rituals of swearing an oath to Queen Elizabeth and sacrificing a baby goat, but the most exciting bit was receiving our ‘to-do list’ from Mr Key.
There was only one thing on my to-do list. If anyone asks Ms Parata about charter schools or privatisation of poor schools in poor areas I’m to immediately jump up and say how excited I am about the ACT Party’s charter school ideas that we’ve managed to sell to the government. Mr Key says it’s important that the New Zealand public are clear in understanding that National’s charter school policy is not their charter school policy.
That’s absolutely fine by me. Technically, since the ACT Party doesn’t really exist, any situation where the ACT Party talks about itself in this way is most exciting. Our major and very generous benefactors – the New Zealand taxpayer (without whom we’d be up a certain creek with no paddle, no boat and completely unable to keep our head above the sludge) – really want to hear what we have to say. I mean the ACT Party received over 0.65% of the vote at the last election. That’s hundreds and hundreds of votes. It’s a mandate.
Speaking of mandates, I am very much looking forward to my first cabinet meeting this week. Of course, I’m not allowed in the big room at the big table. That’s reserved for Mr Key and Mr English and all the other people who have real jobs in this administration. No, there’s an extra table for me and Peter Dunne outside the Cabinet room. We get to colour in pictures of Sir Robert while we wait for Mr Key to come out and tell us what to say next.
If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from Mr Key this year is that selfies are the single most important thing for securing votes. I was door-knocking in Epsom the other day (just in case people had forgotten about me in the two weeks since the election) and imagine my surprise when I was greeting by a small gaggle of private school children all dressed as well-known feminist Miley Cyrus. After spending several minutes laughing about how out of touch the Labour Party is and how amazing alcopops are as an afternoon aperitif, we went our separate ways. I was humbled by the reception and was promised several hundred votes at the 2020 elections.
Oh well… I’d better be off. I’ve got several hundred doors to knock on today. Epsom is a large electorate and as National Party MP for Epsom it is hugely important to me to get out there and talk to as many pre-ball parties as possible.