Is that in regards to finding supporting information, preparing it, putting it together for the prisoner in question? And I'd like to ask him in regards to what the process is they would go through. Hon Dr NICK SMITH: Well, the member says it's ridiculous. Often, in the majority of cases, these are people that are close to them. The Minister's just talked about the process and how corrections can send the forms, or a family member, essentially, or a friend who, I guess, is visiting can collect those documents. The other 48 MPs are selected from the party lists.
But this law is the same law that the National Party supported in 1993. A copy of this regulatory impact assessment can be found at—, https://www.justice.govt.nz/justice-sector-policy/regulatory-stewardship/regulatory-impact-assessments/, http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/informationreleases/ria.
But here's the other point: if somebody, under this bill, if it is passed, nominates to be a candidate, there's a few hurdles they have to get through. This bill amends the Electoral Act 1993 to enfranchise people who are serving a sentence of imprisonment for a term of less than 3 years and better facilitate participation in the electoral system of prisoners who are to be released from prison following a sentence of imprisonment for a term of 3 years or more.
The original draft of the bill suggested or implied or made it pretty clear that that would be an automated process; it was never intended to be. Well, we should remind ourselves that a pretty serious criminal, Arthur Taylor, took issues of prisoner voting all the way through the system, all the way to the Supreme Court.
So this is permissive for the Department of Corrections and their managers and their personnel, but it is not exclusive to the Department of Corrections to assist a prisoner in enrolling to vote. SIMEON BROWN (National—Pakuranga): Thank you, Mr Chair, for the opportunity to take a call on Part 2. _________________________________________________ Note: this simple progress display does not cover all possible stages for a particular bill. A prison manager may not use or disclose the enrolment information collected from a prisoner other than in accordance with subsection (2). But, otherwise, let's not make up fantasies as somehow being a compelling argument about the bill before the House. That could still be what passes through this Parliament, and so I think he should justify that. 3: Third Reading: Final debate and vote. Hon ANDREW LITTLE (Minister of Justice): Just turning to the first bit, I know the member Brett Hudson and his colleagues are desperate to create a picture of something that doesn't exist. This is about the right to vote—restoring the right to vote to a bunch of people who had it unceremoniously taken off them by the National Party in 2010. New Zealand National 55; Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand 8; Ross.
This Bill makes changes to the Electoral Act 1993 (the Act) to enfranchise people who are serving a sentence of imprisonment for a term of less than 3 years and better facilitate participation in the electoral system of prisoners who are to be released from prison following a sentence of imprisonment for a term of 3 years or more. CHAIRPERSON (Adrian Rurawhe): Sorry to interrupt the member, but it's come time for me to leave the Chair for the dinner break. Where's your principle?
We are a party that believes a person is innocent until proven guilty, and that it is entirely appropriate to treat a remand prisoner who a court of law has not found guilty different to the prisoner who has been convicted by a court of law. Hon Dr NICK SMITH: —I was unprincipled in 1993, it was a compromise. If we want to live in the real world, why are we giving people like rapists the right to vote? The Minister responded somewhat reasonably—I think genuinely wishing to point out that, potentially, if that is indeed a problem, there would be a problem also with the fact that a remand prisoner could also be a candidate for election. Parliament's decisions affect all New Zealanders.
It says that there is no legal threshold. So in that respect, they don't share a lot of difference in characteristic to sentenced prisoners. Just in the same way as we limit the rights of those that are serving sentences, we limit their rights to freedom. Please note that the video tab displays all available video for the sitting day of the transcript.
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