A statement from David Cunliffe

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I got into politics because I wanted to make a difference. That’s why I’ve been talking to hardworking Kiwis all around the country, listening to what they have to say. The message I’m hearing again and again is that John Key’s government just isn’t listening. Our Prime Minister is totally out of touch.

If there’s one issue that comes up time and time again, it’s the state of our transport infrastructure. Kiwis have had a gutsful of being stuck in traffic. A Labour government will invest heavily in public transport, but we also won’t be afraid to make bold changes to our road rules.

Motorists tell us they’re fed up with being stuck behind heavy trucks who show no consideration for others on the road. That’s why we’re announcing that under a Labour government trucks won’t be allowed to travel in the fast lanes of three and four lane highways. Our policy will keep traffic moving, and reduce congestion on the roads.

But we’re not stopping there. People also tell us that they can’t stand it when they’re merging in traffic, and when some clown in a souped-up car tries to push ahead of everyone else. We’ll make sure everyone merging in traffic follows the rules.

I’ve been travelling up and down this country talking to people, and I hear a lot of complaints. People are fed up. People have had enough. They’re at their wits’ end. They want to know why it is that when their neighbour’s car alarm goes off at three in the morning for the fourth night in a row, the police lack the power to confiscate the vehicle. We’ll fix that.

It simply isn’t good enough for this government to throw up its hands and say “not our problem” every time you go to open a tin of baked beans, only to find that the tin opener fails to cut the last bit, and then you have to get a spoon or a knife to twist the lid up, and then you have to wiggle the lid until it breaks off.

It’s not good enough for John Key and his rich mates to say “we’re not responsible” when you buy a carton of Anchor vanilla custard from the supermarket, take it home, and then open the carton at the top to pour the contents out, only to find that the custard is too thick to come out. Where’s the support for hardworking Kiwis forced to use a pair of scissors to cut the top of the carton off? Who’s looking after ordinary mums and dads forced to scoop the custard out with a spoon?

I’ll tell you who’s looking after them. It’s not John Key, and it’s not his wealthy mates buying up all our state assets using the huge tax cuts this government gave them. It’s Labour. We’re the party that understands all of your petty grievances. We understand the things that really matter to ordinary Kiwis. It’s not jobs, the economy and education. No, it’s the way the Briscoes lady drives you nuts. It’s the bastard three houses down who revs his car late at night, just as you’re settling down to a good night’s sleep. It’s the way advertisers lie to us.  Like how the Mad Butcher isn’t even remotely mad. I’ve met Peter Leitch several times. He’s a pleasant and affable fellow, and is neither angry nor insane. People are entitled to expect honesty in advertising, and under a Labour government we’ll make retailers accountable for the things they say.

It’s time for a change. It’s time for a government that listens to the people. A government prepared to legislate to make the use of phrases like “at the end of the day” and “going forward” indictable offences. A government prepared to crack down on badly-made espresso coffee. A government determined to ensure that the person you work with and who you are infatuated with finally agrees to sleep with you.

We’ll hunt down and bring to justice the Harvey Norman ad voiceover guy. We’ll abolish Valentines Day, Mothers Day and Fathers Day, and we’ll make sure people in your neighbourhood don’t mow their lawns in the weekend before nine in the morning.

We’re not afraid to tackle the tough issues. That’s why we’ll continue to talk about these things right up until the election, and not just because nobody’s listening to all the other stuff we’ve been trying to say.

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