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24 August 2014
Address to the National Party Campaign Launch

Kia ora, and warm Pacific greetings to you all.

Thank you for your welcome.

It’s great to be with you today in Manukau.

Haven’t we seen some tremendous entertainment this afternoon?

It’s fantastic to see young people so full of life.

Doesn’t it feel great to be launching National’s election campaign here in the heartland of South Auckland?

We’re the party that’s working for New Zealand.

We’re the government that’s delivering results.

The economy’s growing.

Wages are rising.

Benefit numbers are dropping.

Crime rates are falling.

More elective surgery is being done in public hospitals.

And this year, after all we’ve been through as a country, I’m proud to say that the Government’s books will be back in the black.

On top of all that, my sense is that New Zealand has become a much more assured and more optimistic country.

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29 July 2014
Centenary of New Zealand entering the First World War

I move, that this House recognise that on the 4th of August 2014, we will mark the centenary of New Zealand entering the First World War.

A few hours after the declaration of war by the British Empire, of which New Zealand was a part, the Governor of New Zealand Lord Liverpool told a crowd of thousands outside Parliament that New Zealand was at war with Germany.

The New Zealand government’s offer to send an expeditionary force – a move endorsed by this Parliament – was hugely significant.

New Zealand’s population in 1914 was just over one million.

The initial deployment was of 8,000 men, but by 1919 over 100,000 New Zealanders – or ten per cent of the population – had left these shores to serve overseas.

They were not just soldiers. They included, for example, medical staff, sailors and tunnellers.

Over 5,000 Maori served in the War, alongside 500 Pacific Islanders. And 550 women served in the New Zealand Army Nursing Service.

Of those who served, 18,000 lost their lives and another 41,000 were wounded.

One in 20 New Zealanders therefore became casualties of the First World War.


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22 July 2014
Speech to Local Government New Zealand

Thank you for inviting me to the Local Government New Zealand conference. It’s great to be here in Nelson, and it’s great to see all the local mayors, chief executives and elected members.

Ladies and Gentlemen.

The relationship between central government and local government is one of partnership.

We rely on each other to make good choices for our fellow New Zealanders.

Our legislating to ban psychoactive substances earlier this year was in no small part due to your advocacy on this issue. You saw the misery these drugs were causing in your communities. And you made it clear to us that you didn’t want them being sold on your streets.

We listened and we acted.

So it’s important we work together.

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29 June 2014
Address to National Party Conference

Ladies and Gentlemen, fellow National Party members.

Thank you for your warm welcome.

It’s great to be here today.

Doesn’t it feel good to be a member of the National Party?

Doesn’t it feel good to support a government that does things, rather than an opposition that just whinges and says no?

We’re a government that’s practical enough to know that when a storm blows trees over, you can mill them and create jobs.

Compare that with the Labour Party who’d leave all that dead wood lying around doing nothing.

Mind you, we shouldn’t be surprised because that’s what they do in their own caucus.

Today I want to thank my talented team of MPs.

I want to thank our support partners. Together, we are providing stable government that’s making a real difference for New Zealanders.

I want to thank our President, Peter Goodfellow, for his dedication and commitment.

I want to thank my friend and deputy, the author of six great budgets and the proud owner of a new book about yours truly, Bill English.

I want to thank my wife Bronagh for her support and encouragement – I couldn’t do it without you.

And I want to thank all the National Party volunteers who’ll be busy in the coming weeks delivering leaflets, canvassing, putting up hoardings, and sometimes coming back the next day to put them up again.

Your efforts are crucial in this election.

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06 May 2014
Pre-Budget Speech

Good afternoon, it’s great to be here today.

I would like to thank Business New Zealand and Fujitsu for hosting this event.

Today I want to talk about the Budget that Finance Minister Bill English will deliver next week.

I will also announce two important initiatives that will be of interest to this audience.

But first I want to set the scene as Budget 2014 approaches.

This will be the National-led Government’s sixth Budget, and can I say Bill English is doing an excellent job.

Through his previous five Budgets he has steered us through the recession, the global financial crisis, and the aftermath of the destructive Canterbury earthquakes.

It has been a difficult few years for many, and the Government acknowledges this.

We have taken on a considerable amount of debt to protect the most vulnerable families, maintain living standards and support the rebuild of Christchurch.

However, we are moving into a period where we are seeing improved economic and fiscal conditions.

Next week we will see Budget forecasts showing that in the coming financial year, the Government will post a small surplus, followed by increasing surpluses in the years after that.

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