No more flag debate while Key is PM

John key has confirmed that he is done with flag referenda.

Prime Minister John Key says he is disappointed with the flag result and that the National Government will not revisit the issue under his leadership.

Mr Key, speaking to reporters at Auckland Airport this evening, said that he respected New Zealand’s choice of flag.

He took some positives from the result, pointing out that nearly one million people will have voted for change by the time the final results came in.

Mr Key also defended the process, saying it was lengthy and considered.

Asked whether the referendum process had been worth $26 million given it led to no change, he said it had sparked an “enormous”, healthy debate across the country.

“You can’t shy away from a debate or a discussion about nationhood,” he said.

Yeah, except this wasn’t about nationhood. If it was it would have been a proper constitutional debate.

Just because the referendum did not produce the outcome he wanted “doesn’t mean it wasn’t a worthwhile process”.

“We … as a country had a nationwide discussion about our flag, about nationhood, about what we stand for,” Mr Key said.

“And I think that’s been an important discussion we not only should have had, but must always have.

“I don’t think we should shy away from … contentious issues just because they are by nature contentious.”

I admire John Key for going with his own personal view…and sticking with it.

Contrast that with Labour who are gloating that they got one over John Key while, at the same time, ignoring that they are gloating about the loss of their own policy.

You really can’t make this stuff up. Labour’s own positioning in this whole debate will be thrown back in their faces the next time they raise the flag debate.

 

– NZ Herald

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