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A selection of the best interviews and debates from the 2011 General Election campaign as featured on Radio New Zealand's programmes, and full interviews and media conferences recorded by our reporters throughout the campaign.

Friday, 11 November 2011

National leader meets with John Banks

In a show of support, John Key had a cup of tea with the ACT candidate for Epsom on Friday but says it is ultimately up to the voters to decide who should win the seat.

Two thirds of people not enrolled to vote are aged 18 to 29

The national manager of the Electoral Enrolment Centre fears young voters are missing out on the opportunity to have their say.

National Party to crack down on driving licences

The National Party is promising to crack down on people who sit on their learner and restricted driver licences for prolonged periods.

Campaign Focus on Politics for 11 November 2011

After days of speculation the National Party leader, John Key, finally sat down with ACT's Epsom candidate this afternoon.

Key signals support for Banks in Epsom

The leader of the National Party John Key has given public support for the ACT party's Epsom candidate, saying he'd not be unhappy if John Banks won.

Labour leader discusses Epsom seat

Phil Goff says a meeting between National leader John Key and ACT candidate John Banks on Friday is an attempt to rort the electoral system.

Kiwisaver boss warns National over asset sales conflicts

A prominent Kiwisaver manager says the National Party must guard against allowing big foreign financial institutions undue influence over state asset sales if it is re-elected.

Symbolic meeting between Key and Banks confirmed for today

With ACT contininuing to languish in the polls, today is a crucial day for the party when John Banks has his very important cup of tea with National Party leader John Key.

Infamous election meeting grill candidates in rowdy debate

It's been billed as the country's most infamous election meeting, and last night the locals in Wellington's Aro Valley were at their heckling, hooting, water-pistol-shooting best.

Asset sales could start before end of next year

If the National Party is re-elected, shares in one of the state-owned energy companies could be sold before the end of next year.

RNZ reporters on campaign trail review week

Our Parliamentary chief reporter Jane Patterson has been with the National Party leader, John Key. Our political reporter Julian Robins joins us from Auckland Airport. He has been with the Labour Party leader, Phil Goff this week.

National defends decision to appoint asset sale adviser

The Australian arm of the bank Lazard is advising the Treasury about the merits of proposals presented by bankers who would be involved in the sale process.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Green Party proposes nationwide earthquake levy

The Green Party has spelt out how it would impose an earthquake levy on higher earning taxpayers, to fund the rebuild of Christchurch, if it becomes part of the next Government.

Reserve Bank comfortable with Labour and Nats' commitment

While the National and Labour Parties continue to attack each other's spending promises, the Reserve Bank is comfortable with both parties' commitment to getting the public finances back into surplus.

Labour Party leader steps up opposition to asset sales

The Labour Party leader, Phil Goff, is stepping up his opposition to asset sales, saying his first act if he becomes Prime Minister would be to stop the sales process. Labour has made opposition to National's plan for partial state asset sales one of the central planks of its election campaign.

National wants to reduce waiting times for elective surgery

The National Party is promising to shorten waiting times for elective surgery - to a maximum of four months - if it leads the next Government. At the moment health boards perform over 90 per cent of operations within six months, but National wants that reduced over the next three years.

National's environment policy fatally flawed: Greens

The Green Party says the National Party's new environment policy shows a lack of courage to truly tackle problems.

Helensville candidates campaigning for party vote

It was a meet the candidate's event in the National Party leader, John Key's, Helensville electorate last night, but most of the candidates there weren't trying to win the seat.

Epsom candidates meet as endorsement speculation mounts

Candidates in the Epsom seat have sparred for the second time as speculation mounts over whether the National Party will signal its supporters to give their electorate votes to the Act party candidate.

Comment from RNZ political editor

John Key was invited to come on the programme this morning, he declined. Radio New Zealand's political editor, Brent Edwards, analyses.

Labour says National's figures are shonky

The Labour Party leader, Phil Goff, has tried to turn the tables on John Key over fiscal credibility, saying National's figures are shonky.

Goff fires back at Key over fiscal credibility

The Labour Party leader, Phil Goff, is again attacking John Key's credibility, saying National's figures are shonky.

Brash says no to compulsory Te Reo Maori in schools

The Maori Party says it would make Te Reo Maori compulsorily available in schools by 2015. But the idea is being criticised by other political parties as going too far - or not far enough.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Opponents of TPP demand Key shows them the deal

Opponents of a trans-Pacific trade talks between New Zealand, the United States and seven other countries, have demanded the National Party leader, John Key, show them the deal.

Anti-MMP group says electorate deals shows need for change

The anti-MMP lobby group, Vote for Change, says the deals between parties over the Epsom and Ohariu electorates are a good reason to get rid of mixed member proportional voting.

National announces environmental, agricultural policies

The National Party is tagging more of the money it expects to make from selling assets - this time for a special irrigation fund.

Dentists are applauding the Labour Party

Dentists are applauding the Labour Party for promising an independent inquiry on fluoridation of drinking water.

John Key says National's record on the economy is good

The National Party leader was responding to a 'top 15' list from Labour accusing National of talking up the economy.

Labour leader responds to latest poll ratings

Phil Goff talks to reporters about the latest poll that showed a fall in support for Labour, party leadership and policy costings.

National Standards opponents say issue may be vote-decider

Opponents of national standards in reading, writing and maths say they are pleased with growing cross-party support for abolishing or watering down the controversial policy. They say the issue is a weak point for the National Party and they predict that it will be a vote-deciding issue for some people.

Labour promises to boost health spending

The Labour Party has accused the government of under funding the health sector and says if it wins the election it will increase spending. In its health policy released today, Labour has outlined its 10 core commitments for improving the health service including fighting obesity and providing children under six with free doctors visits, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Our economics correspondent analyses election promises

The economic policies of the main political parties have been at the centre of debate in this year's election campaign. The politicians have promised their plans will address the economic challenges facing the country.

Peter Dunne faces tough fight in Ohariu to retain seat

The deal in Epsom isn't the only arrangement National is involved in. A similar deal is in place in Ohariu in Wellington where the long-serving MP and United Future Party leader, Peter Dunne, faces a tough fight to hold onto the the seat he's held for 27 years.

Epsom voters left hanging as Key mulls Act endorsement

Epsom voters are being left hanging as the National Party leader, John Key, considers whether to come out and endorse Act candidate John Banks in Epsom. While National's candidate Paul Goldsmith is running a party vote campaign only, Mr Key could still give voters a firmer prod to cast their electorate vote for Mr Banks.

Labour plans to boost health funding if elected

The Labour Party says health is under-funded and it'll boost money going into the sector if it becomes the government. In its health policy released today, Labour also says it'll spend 10 million dollars a year to enable children under six to see a doctor if they need to, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Partial asset sale policy hasn't dented National's support

One of the mysteries of this election campaign is why National's major policy plank of partial asset sales hasn't dented the party's support when most New Zealanders say they oppose the plan.

Labour says John Key has failed on his promise

The Labour Party leader, Phil Goff, says the National Party leader, John Key, has failed to deliver on his promise of a brighter future for the country.

Act defends deal with National despite trailing in Epsom

The National Party and Act are defending their deal in Epsom, with Don Brash saying Act should win the seat with or without an endorsement from John Key.

John Key responds to Labour's 'top 10' list

The National Party leader says Labour's leader should focus on the real world in which New Zealand has faced difficult circumstances.

Phil Goff speaks to union about John Key's record

The Labour Party leader sets out his 'top 10 worst statistics' list at the Rail and Maritime Transport Union conference at Porirua.

Partial sale of state assets

We look at National's proposal to partially privatise state owned assets - is it good economic management that will improve efficiency of these companies, or is it a case of simply selling the family silver? With John Palmer - Chairman of two state owned companies - Air New Zealand and Solid Energy, Geoff Simmons - Economist working for Gareth Morgan Investments.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Nat's proposed extended prison lockup

The National Party says if re-elected it will bring in a law so the very worst high-risk sexual and violent offenders can be kept locked up even after their sentences are finished.

Parties clash on education policies

The National Party leader, John Key, says the timing of its partial asset sales could be delayed, if the international economy worsened.

ACT party has reprimanded its New Plymouth electorate chairman

The ACT party has reprimanded its New Plymouth electorate chairman for confronting National's leader John Key during a visit to a mall today.

Nats urged to sign pledge to end poverty

The child advocacy group Every Child Counts is urging the National Party to sign a pledge to end child poverty by 2020.

Local electorate chair of ACT reprimanded

The ACT Party's New Plymouth electorate chairman has been reprimanded by party officials for confronting National's leader John Key during a visit to a mall today.

The National Party promises extended prison lockup

The National Party says if re-elected it will bring in a law so the very worst high-risk sexual and violent offenders can be kept locked up even after their sentences are finished.

Labour says it would lift 150,000 families out of poverty

The Labour Party admits shutting the poorest families out of a Working for Families tax credit is discriminatory and it would change the policy if it became government.

Labour Party deputy leader on the policy for children

Annette King answers reporters' questions on the policy, along with health spokesperson Grant Roberston and Sue Moroney, the party's education spokeperson.

Election Debate: Education

Anne Tolley, Sue Moroney, Catherine Delahunty and Kaapua Smith outline the National, Labour, Green and Maori party policies on education.

NZ First says it would rather be in opposition

New Zealand First says it would rather be in Opposition in the next Parliament, than work with any of the other main parties. The Party leader Winston Peters has ruled out working with National, Labour, the Greens or the Maori Party.

Health sector wants next government to push ahead with changes

The next government is being told to push ahead with fundamental changes to the health system. Those in the health sector say the issues it faces are beyond party politics, and current initiatives should continue.

Claim new reforms could put some loan sharks out of business

Large numbers of loan shark and credit companies operating in New Zealand would be forced out of business under new reforms announced by the National Party.

Greens propose public KiwiSaver provider

The Green Party says its proposal to set up a public KiwiSaver provider would save people who use the scheme tens of thousands of dollars. And the National Party leader, John Key, says it is an issue worth considering.

National admits asset sales may not fetch hoped-for price

With a new poll showing selling state assets remaining highly unpopular, the National Party is conceding that its partial sales may not raise as much money as it hoped.

Key warns NZ will suffer in global market downturn

National Party leader John Key is warning the turmoil on global economic markets will have consequences for New Zealand.

National concedes asset sale price may disappoint

The National Party is conceding that its partial asset sales may not raise as much money as it hoped. Green Party co-leader, Russel Norman, says now is the time to drop the whole idea altogether.

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