‘I worry about the environment’
Voting was something I’d thought that I wouldn’t do when I was younger.
I didn’t really understand the importance, and was not interested in politics, probably like many young people.
Stats on voting in Hamilton show not many young people become involved in elections, and I didn’t want to be a part of those statistics.
It probably wasn’t until I was 18 that I actually realised that I was given the opportunity to control my future.
Voting season is very strange. People become more defensive and can become quite upset when you’re opinion is different.
I had a few people in my life try to convince me that who they were voting for was the best choice and I should vote the same.
But I’m much too stubborn for that.
Election night I sat nervously watching Radio New Zealand’s John Campbell with a drink in my hand alternatively flicking my attention to a whiteboard of drinking rules for election night.
I don’t know much about our political history, but I’m pretty sure this is the closest Labour has been to National since 1999 when Helen Clark became prime minister.
Most people think Winston will side with National but with the ‘‘king maker’’ having good relationships with both main parties, I think it’s anybody’s game.
Or at least I hope it is. People worry about the economy. I worry about the environment.
I went to an environmental election meeting at Waikato University to get some more information about the parties’ policies on the environment.
I remember one of the politicians saying without a good environment we can’t have a good economy. We need good food and good water to be able to do anything.
I thought then that I would 100 per cent vote Green. As a vegan that made the most sense.
But I didn’t.
My first voting experience in the general election happened quite spontaneously.
My partner and I were going to The Base when we saw that there was a voting station.
Feeling like a nervous child, who was walking into school for the first time, I walked in still undecided on which party I wanted to vote for.
Wanting to make an educated decision, I did watch a few interviews with representatives of National, Labour, NZ first, TOP and Green.
After Labour said they wouldn’t introduce any new taxes in their first term, I knew who I wanted to vote for.
-Emelyn Mchardy is a journalism student at Wintec, working with the Cambridge Edition and the Hamilton Press.
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Wintec journalism student Emelyn McHardy was a first-time voter at this year’s general election.