Today in politics: Monday, June 16

Last updated 05:00 16/06/2014

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Politics

Labour and the Greens fall out over whether house prices should be cut in half Below the Beltway: The week in politics 'Mate, you're dreaming': Kevin Rudd's UN hopes dashed, but what does it mean for Helen Clark? Murray McCully met Saudi businessman tied to a controversial farm deal All mental health calls, including to 111, to be triaged in single system Southland MPs and councils urged to fight against legislation 'attacking local democracy' Hamilton City Council votes unanimously for Momentum theatre rebuild Kevin Rudd's bid to become UN chief kicked to Australian PM Chinese get 70 per cent of NZ entrepreneur work visas Prime Minister John Key seeks assurances regarding Tongan passports

Walking away from trade deal 'possible'

Trade Minister Tim Groser says it is possible New Zealand could walk away from the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal if it is not in NZ's interests.

Appearing on TVNZ's Q+A yesterday, Groser would not say whether New Zealand would sign up to the deal without zero tariffs on dairy exports, but said the TPP was the first time he had worked on a deal where he believed it was possible officials would walk away because it could work against our interests. 

Seven candidates from UnitedFuture

UnitedFuture has named seven electorate candidates ahead of the September 20 election. Leader Peter Dunne, the party's sole MP, said the candidates ''all have the capacity to make a very effective contribution to Parliament''.

Among the candidates is Sultan Eusoff, chief executive of the Federation of Islamic Associations, who will contest Rongotai and Dave Stonyer, president of the National Speakers Association, who will contest Hutt South.

Thresholds reform call by Internet-Mana

Internet-Mana is calling for a reform of the MMP thresholds in a way which would benefit smaller parties, calling for ''equal value for all party votes''.

Currently unless a party wins an electorate it requires 5 per cent of the party vote to get MPs into Parliament. Internet Party leader Laila Harre said this meant more than 100,000 votes could be cast for a party and be ''ignored''. The alliance says changes could be made before the September 20 election.

Brownlee launches land transport vision

Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee has launched the draft Government Policy Statement on land transport, which sets out proposed investment in roads and public transport over the next decade from June 2015.

Brownlee said the statement, which is available on the Ministry of Transport's website and open for consultation until August 11, also covered funding for walking and cycling initiatives, road safety promotion and road policing

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- The Dominion Post

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