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Dunne talks tough at campaign launch

Published: 5:02PM Saturday August 20, 2005 Source: RNZ/One News

The United Future party has launched its election campaign in Auckland, amid polls which would see it returned to parliament with far fewer MPs.

Party leader Peter Dunne has a safe electorate seat in Ohariu-Belmont, but average polling of less than 2% would see only him and his deputy Judy Turner returned.

Political experts say like most of the minor parties United Future will be relying on the increased exposure the official campaign brings them.

At the campaign launch the party put a question mark over whether it could support a Labour Green coalition - ruling out entering a coalition with the Greens

Party leader Peter Dunne used the launch to attack both the Greens and New Zealand First.

United Future currently provides votes on supply and confidence for the government, but Dunne says it would be difficult to repeat that if Labour is in coalition with the Greens.

He also sent a warning to Labour and National not to take his party's support for granted.

"We are no-one's automatic partner and we are not entering this election campaign to be either the plaything of Labour or National," he said.

Returning to a central theme of this election Dunne said more New Zealanders would be better off with his party's tax policy than with Labour's or National's.

"We were the ones that persuaded Dr Cullen to make his modest adjustment to thresholds this year."

Dunne also laid down the law on United Future's non negotiables.

He said the party will not support any government that seeks to downgrade or abolish the Families Commission, seeks to change the legal status of cannabis or supports impinging on people's freedom of speech.