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Conservative Party ready to stand in Epsom

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Colin Craig
Colin Craig

Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig is ready to stand in Epsom if there is a by-election and ready to compromise if necessary to work with other political parties in Government.

Speaking today on TV3's "The Nation --- where former ACT Leader and Epsom MP Rodney Hide said he would not stand again in Epsom --- Mr Craig said he would if current MP John Banks had to resign and there was a by-election.

"I think that's very likely," he said.

"Such a decision would have to be confirmed by the board or the party, but I think it's very likely."

And Mr Craig said his party was ready to be a long term partner of the National Party.

And to achieve that he was ready to put aside some policy disagreements with National.

"Inevitably in politics you can't get everything you want.

"That's just how politics is."

And on the same programme, former ACT MP and right wing commentator Stephen Franks said he thought there could be common ground between economic liberals like himself and social conservatives like the Conservative Party membership.

Mr Banks said that Mr Craig's recognition that democracies demanded that their leaders make compromises would not make it very hard.

Mr Franks said he thought that while the Conservatives could attract ACT supporters with their emphasis on personal responsibility their lack of emphasis on economic freedom might be a problem.

The Conservative are opposed to tax cuts, asset sales and the sale of New Zealand farmland to China.

But Mr Craig said issues like the Crafar farm sales would not a deal breaker.

I think issues for us are very much fiscal and budget issues," he said.

"We can't support a continued increase in government expending.

"Now National made a clear promise they would cut the spending, but did not.

"Now for us we've got to bring the budget back under control."

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