Assisted dying's opponents should look to Desmond Tutu

“Desmond Tutu’s beautifully written Washington Post Op-ed might as well be an open letter to New Zealand opponents of assisted dying,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

The New Zealand Medical Association should release its members’ views on assisted dying

Colorado doctors are officially neutral on assisted dying – New Zealand doctors and the New Zealand public deserve the same honest representation from the New Zealand Medical Association, says End of Life Choice Bill sponsor David Seymour.

“The New Zealand Medical Association has submitted that it opposes physician-assisted dying, but only told us that there are ‘a range’ of views among its members,” says Mr Seymour.

Greens’ private healthcare ban is dangerous (and mad)

The Green Party’s idea of abolishing private healthcare shows they are as kooky as ever, says ACT Leader David Seymour, the only MP to have lived in a country where private healthcare is banned.

“Private healthcare is illegal in Canada.  During my time there I travelled to the USA to receive healthcare, as do many Canadians.  Even one MP, Belinda Stronach, infamously took her doctor’s advice to skip the Canadian system in favour of the USA’s when diagnosed with cancer.

E-cigs must not be used as a cash grab

ACT Leader David Seymour welcomes moves toward legalising nicotine e-cigarettes, but says the government must pledge not to put excise taxes on the products.

"Taxing vapers the way we tax smokers would destroy the benefit of legalising e-cigarettes," says Mr Seymour. "There's currently a strong financial incentive for smokers to switch to vaping. Taxing e-cigarettes would discourage smokers from switching from a harmful product to a relatively safe one.

MPs dodge assisted dying debate

ACT Leader David Seymour is deeply disappointed at certain National MPs’ choice to veto debate on the End of Life Choice Bill.

“National MPs’ blockage of the debate is a sad display of political sidestepping. Acknowledging the most critical issues faced by New Zealanders is literally what MPs are paid to do. But thanks to the actions of certain MPs today, we don’t even get a debate.

General Debate - End of Life Choice

Mr Speaker,

Martin Hames was sick and knew he would get sicker.  He took his own life alone, not wanting to implicate anybody else in his death.  He did it much earlier than he would have liked, because he knew the advancing condition of his Huntington’s disease would prevent him from later taking such an action.

Free Thoughts - Tobacco tax

Who would take hundreds of dollars each from Maori and the poor every year? Who would keep doing it when it didn’t work?  Who would want to take even more? 

I’ve watched a young mother with a young girl at Countdown buying a can of coconut milk (about $2) and a packet of cigarettes (now $25).  I don’t know their situation but they didn’t look rich. I remember the look in the girl’s eyes, fixed on the cigarettes as if to say: that could have been dinner.