The Prime Minister’s interview on Campbell Live last Monday showed him at his best. It was a relaxed and thoughtful John Key finally being given the space to speak with some depth, rather than the usual campaign slogans and sound-bites.
After his historic election victory it was good to hear Key talking about child poverty and saying he would be making this a focus for his advisors. John Campbell questioned if he really was concerned about the less well off as they were not his constituency. Key graciously replied that he thought the million New Zealanders who voted for National did in fact care about their fellow Kiwis. It went unstated that he himself also cared.
And it is clear that Key does. He has not governed as a right wing ideologue but has instead led his team on a sensible path, through difficult times. In the face of a crashing economy he avoided a slash and burn approach to govt spending that would have led to huge social dislocation and shrunk the economy even further. Instead it was a steady path that protected support for the less well-off whilst carefully managing the budget back to a surplus.
The Prime Minister is a people person, backed by a capable and competent team. They don’t philosophize about social justice. They just get things done and people are better off. That’s why New Zealanders voted them back in with an increased majority – something unprecedented for a government entering its third term.