Labour proposes repeal of National Government

David Shearer is determined to ensure that scenes like these never took place.

David Shearer is determined to ensure that scenes like these never took place.

Just one day before the government releases its 2013 budget, Labour has threatened to derail it – as well as the last four budgets – by announcing a policy to repeal the entire National Government.

The policy, announced by leader David Shearer late this morning, would be the party’s top priority if it were elected to lead a government after the 2014 election, and aims to bring together – in a single package – all of Labour’s policies since he became leader.

“This is a policy for all New Zealanders,” said Shearer. “It is sensible, straightforward, smart and bold. It asks the question ‘Do we really want to go on living like the last five years actually happened?’ And then it answers that question: ‘No.’”

While the proposal has yet to take any concrete legislative form, Shearer said its goals were clear: thoroughly undo National’s sale of state assets, cancel its convention centre deal with SkyCity, repeal its five budgets, invalidate the results of the 2008 and 2011 elections, and reverse its appointments of Susan Devoy as Race Relations Commissioner and Sir Jerry Mataparae as Governor General.

It would also eliminate every decision, action or event of the last five years from the historical and parliamentary record, including X Factor NZ and the Christchurch earthquakes.

“Christchurch is fixed,” said Shearer.

Asked if the legislation would revert New Zealand’s calendar to the year 2008, Shearer replied “Probably.”

The government is currently refusing to comment on the policy, which has been welcomed with open arms by New Zealand First and the Green Party. Green co-leader Metiria Turei said she was already in talks with Labour to organize a petition that would force a referendum on the issue.

Political scientist and commentator Jon Johansson said he was simultaneously impressed and confused by the policy.

“Well it’s certainly bold,” he said. “I mean it’s an extremely impressive policy and I think it’s something that a lot of people have been holding out for. But I just can’t fathom why any government would ever want to repeal a previous one. It leaves them with no one to blame.”