Yesterday I was in parliament’s public gallery for six valedictory speeches.
National MPs Shane Ardern, Phil Heatley, Paul Hutchison, Eric Roy and Tony Ryall, and Labour’s Ross Robertson delivered their reflections on their time in parliament.
All were very different but there was one similarity – all had come to parliament, motivated by their desire to serve their constituents and improve their country.
Politicians in general are often derided. Sometimes individuals deserve that derision.
But listening to all the speeches yesterday reminded me that most are good people and most do good work, some in smaller ways, others are able to achieve something bigger.
It also reminded me that there is a lot of common ground on ultimate goals. The divisions are often much less about where we’re going and far more about how to get there.