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Key champions fact that 100% of referendum votes were for a new flag

Prime Minister John Key poses with the victorious Kyle Lockwood design “Burnt Weetbix: A New Zealand Story of Flag”

Prime Minister John Key poses with the victorious Kyle Lockwood design “Burnt Weetbix: A New Zealand Story of Flag”

Prime Minister John Key continues to champion the result of the first flag referendum this week, saying he has it on good word from the Electoral Commission that, even after final results are tallied, there are likely to be “no valid votes” for the current flag among the results.

“It’s quite heartening, really, to see just how overwhelming the results are,” he told media today, during a photoshoot to promote Kyle Lockwood’s winning design, officially titled Burnt Weetbix: A New Zealand Story of Flag.

“We’ve had a good debate, I think most New Zealanders would agree they’ve had their say, they’ve been heard, in the public arena, in petitions, at the dinner table, at the breakfast table – that’s probably the same table, actually – and ultimately, at the end of the day, 82% of them have voted for this design, maybe a bit of disagreement on the colour and, you know, that sort of thing, but when you look at it, actually, even the other 18% didn’t vote for our current flag. They voted for something new.”

The preliminary results on election night seem to back up the Prime Minister’s claim, with not a single vote being recorded in favour of the current flag,

Spokesperson for the RSA Barry Siddle was not available for comment, as he passed away between the time the request for interview was made, and the eventual publication of this article.

A stand-in spokesperson, Curwen Baxter, said the RSA was sceptical of the results.

“We certainly know the support for our current flag is overwhelming,” he said. “Poll after poll shows that, so I just find it hard to believe that literally all of the votes were for this new flag or the other new flag.

“There are people, some still with us, who fought and died for that flag.”

Baxter clarified that, while people conventionally believe New Zealand’s war veterans had fought for their country, their families, and against the rise of fascism in Europe, they had in fact fought “mostly for the flag,” worried that Japan – or even Germany – would change it to something with “funny, potentially foreign” colours.

Since providing comment for this article, Curwen Baxter has died.

The unanimous result of the referendum has led the Government to consider scrapping the second stage altogether, says Key, as he feels there is now “no reason” to believe the result would be any different.