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Wall suspects anti-gay electorate campaign

Thu 14 Aug 2014 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback

Louisa Wall at last night's ALBA forum Louisa Wall believes National is trying to use her sexuality and championing of marriage equality against her in her South Auckland electorate, something she says is “pathetic”, but hasn’t intimidated her. “They’re trying to find all people with fundamental Christian beliefs and tell them I’m gay and it was my marriage equality bill and they shouldn’t support Labour, because that’s what we do,” the Manurewa MP told the Auckland Lesbian Business Association’s pre-election panel last night. “You would have seen in the papers this whole focus on Pacific vote and Pacific churches. And not just on Pacific voters. The National Party is actively telling anybody with a Christian belief or philosophy about me, about our support for marriage equality, in a detrimental way." She cited an example of attitudes she was facing from some in South Auckland, as a reaction when she was door knocking last week. When she introduced herself a woman who’d answered the door said “are you gay?” When Wall said she was, she says the woman responded “you’re not normal, go away.” Her National opponent in the electorate Simeon Brown is a young anti-abortion activist who is also anti-marriage equality, who in his submission against it urged Parliament to allow “anyone who provides services for weddings and marriages” to be able to discriminate against same-sex couples. He’s also against gay couples adopting. Wall said he told a GreyPower meeting about his “strong moral convictions” and insinuated she didn’t have any. “I just wanted to share that with you because the National Party, and John Key, who likes to come into our community – especially the Big Gay Out – and parade around as if he’s a hundred per cent supportive of us, the reality is he’s not. And we should know this. And I’m not intimidated by it, because if that’s all they’ve got, if that’s the simple message, then it’s pretty pathetic.” Wall says personally, she's focused on addressing poverty, inequality and discrimination. Genter, Wall and Pierard Marcello's Caffe and Restaurant on College Hill was full for the ALBA forum, where Green MP Julie Anne Genter and Internet Mana candidate Miriam Pierard also spoke. All three women were well-received, were in agreement on a number of issues. This offered something of an insight into what a coalition involving their parties might look like. The forum covered a wide variety of election issues, and did not have a particular lgbti focus. Pierard stated it was "by far the most pleasant panel I have ever been on". National MP Nykki Kaye was invited but was unable to attend. Claudette Hauiti was offered as a replacement, prior to revelations about her spending, however ALBA turned the offer down.    

Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff

First published: Thursday, 14th August 2014 - 12:42pm

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