Cannabis referendum – trust the politicians?

Details of what the drafting cannabis law reform will cover looks very promising. It looks like a job well done.

Not so well done is that despite what Jacinda Ardern and Andrew Little are trying to assert, it won’t be a binding referendum. They are asking voters to trust that politicians will honour the will of the voters, some undetermined time after the next election. That doesn’t fill me with confidence.

It looks like the Greens have got as much as they can, but NZ First are not as committed to voters deciding via referendums as they have made out, and Labour have allowed a Clayton’s binding referendum to be proposed.

National don’t look trustworthy on this either, with the positions of Simon Bridges and Paula Bennett shifting at a car barking rate.

Overall this is a big step forward for cannabis law reform, but having to trust the politicians and parties voted in next year to abide by the will of the voters is a real concern – unless the voters choose to stick with the current dysfunctional cannabis laws.

Leave a comment


  1. adamsmith1922

     /  8th May 2019

    PG I understand what you say, but I think the scope for half baked legislation is still there, plus I believe Ardern and Little are being devious and manipulative as I posit here
    Part of my reasoning is that Ardern has a dismal record of actually delivering anything. Plus there are still many unanswered questions.

    • Maggy Wassilieff

       /  8th May 2019

      Well written piece…exposes the games Little and Ardern are playing with the electorate.

      • Duker

         /  8th May 2019

        Vote Green then. if national is opposed to legalisation, labour you dont trust , then more Green Mps will ensure the result of the refeerendum will be implemented.

  2. Duker

     /  8th May 2019

    If you dont trust national to pass the draft legislation if they win government – then dont vote for them…problem solved.
    I think there are bigger winning the referendum, which isnt a postal vote but will be alongside the election which guarantees a high turnout of voters but not younger voters.

    • Gezza

       /  8th May 2019

      Probably a compromise after debate. If they ran a separate referendum there’d be complaints about their wasting money on it when it could be easier & more cheaply done at election time.

      That’s a good point about young people not voting possibly skewing the referendum result to towards the older, conservative voters preference. But who knows, young voters this time may go to the booths just to vote on the referendum question.

  3. Duker

     /  8th May 2019

    There is one problem with AdamSmiths approach
    “three Government parties have confirmed their agreement to respect the decision of the referendum and to vote in favour of the result.” or if it doesnt pass toss it all in the bin

  4. NOEL

     /  8th May 2019

    Now that it’s confirmed that there will be no question on decriminalisation it’s going to be interesting to watch where that vote will move to.

    64 percent of respondents think possessing a small amount of cannabis for personal use should be either legal (33%) or decriminalised (31%), with a minority (34%) in favour of retaining prohibition.

    • I think they have moved away from contradictory words like ‘Decrim.’ & ‘Legalise’ to the one they use with Alcohol: ‘REGULATE’ (legal but with strict rules; age 20+, limited homegrow, licensed sales, no use in public etc.)

      Maybe its time to ‘get with the programme’ ??

  5. I just listened to Paula’s diatribe RANT.. during the General Debate, claiming that law reform in Canada (less than a year since reform) has seen increased use/HARM (?) & that the Black-market has still got about 30+% of sales.

    SO.. we should just hold off with reform here, until ‘more evidence comes to light’. BUT; Ignoring the stats. from other countries (much longer data sets) that have seen positive change occurring: drops in use rates & black-market, after the ‘forbidden fruit mystique’ has worn off :/ 😦

    Its called: DISInformation & FEAR-mongering.. Paula !

  1. Cannabis referendum – trust the politicians? — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition

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