INDEPENDENT NEWS

Simcock Challenges Opposition On Prison Sentences

Published: Wed 30 Jun 1999 06:36 PM
Simcock Challenges Opposition Parties to Explain to Voters
Why They Oppose Tougher Prison Sentences
Last night in Parliament Hamilton West MP Bob Simcock challenged the Labour and New Zealand First MP’s to explain to voters why they oppose tougher sentences for serious criminals.
“Labour and New Zealand First MP’s should go out on the streets and tell people that they oppose longer sentences for serious offenders” Mr Simcock said. “They and the majority of their colleagues made it plain in Parliament last night that they don’t believe in longer sentences for thugs who invade the homes of elderly people.
During the Third Reading debate of the Home Invasion legislation speaker after speaker from the Labour and New Zealand First Parties stood up and argued that longer sentences don’t work. Members of those parties repeatedly tell the public that they want to get tough on criminals. But when the opportunity is provided in parliament they look for reasons to vote for soft sentences. At the time of the Bouma attack, Labour acted as if it was outraged and called for tougher sentences for home invasion crimes, but this week in Parliament they changed their mind. In 1993 the Labour Party voted against increasing sentences for rape and they defended that vote again last night.
People have had a guts full of serious violent offenders and they expect sentences to be increased. In public the Labour and New Zealand First MP’s agree with them, but in Parliament they betray them.
Week after week the Labour party sends its Justice Spokesman, Phil Goff, out to bark like a ferocious dog in the newspapers, but in the house they act like the politically correct bunch of liberals that they really are.
The majority of Labour members have shown that they are more concerned about whether or not prisons are good for criminals than they are about reflecting the communities outrage about crime.”
ENDS

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