Michael Wood is the newest MP in the New Zealand Parliament. His official swearing in on Tuesday 7th February was the first thing Parliament did in 2017, and took precedence over congratulating the Queen on the 65th anniversary of her reign.
His first day in the House began with fervour and energy when the debate over the Prime Minister’s Statement kicked off the usual business.
Michael Wood is the Labour MP for Mount Roskill, having won the December by-election to replace Phil Goff after Mr Goff became Mayor of Auckland.
Every new MP gets a first speaking opportunity after being sworn in referred to as a maiden speech. It’s an opportunity to introduce themselves and their philosophy to their parliamentary colleagues and the wider country.
During the speech, Michael Wood refers to how he has been described variously but not always consistently by the press. It is something he referred to with irony when he tweeted an invite to listen to his maiden speech.
Maiden speech time confirmed: next Wed 8 Feb at 5.45pm. I've been described by 1 journo as a "boring machine politician". Come watch!— Michael Wood (@michaelwoodnz) February 1, 2017
And if you wanted to know where he looked to for inspiration in writing this defining speech, look no further:
Maiden speech research. Check out this from Clem Atlee: https://t.co/aYXGfBz2Bg— Michael Wood (@michaelwoodnz) February 2, 2017
The House is produced for RNZ with funding from Parliament.