Why Guy Williams supports Labour and the Greens
Comedian Guy Williams has officially nailed his political colours to the mast, revealing he supports Labour and the Greens and wants National ejected from the Beehive.
The Jono and Ben star and former The Edge radio jockey was the MC of the joint Labour-Greens State of the Nation address at the weekend, as part of a drive by the parties to engage with young Kiwis.
"I feel like if I have a little bit of profile, that maybe I can help get other people involved in politics because I think it's really important," he said.
His MCing was littered with political jokes, as well as attacks on former Prime Minister John Key, new Prime Minister Bill English and new Deputy Prime Minister Paula Bennett.
"One of things that inspired me to get involved in politics is when Bill English did his first-ever press conference as Prime Minister and he was asked if he was a feminist. He said he doesn't know what that is and 'no he's not'.
"How sad is it that he couldn't just take a stance on something like that and stand for equality?" he said, prompting applause from the crowd.
Mr Key's legacy was a focus for Williams, and he took aim at Ms Bennett's track record.
"I often wonder, what is he feeling right now? He left office and it was all smiles but he must be sitting in Hawaii or wherever he is and he must have a few regrets.
"He must be thinking, 'At the end of the day, I've done a lot of great stuff, changed the flag to the same flag, I was a pioneer in developing the three-way handshake,' but all the major issues in the last 10 years - housing, child poverty, domestic violence - have all just been ignored or swept under the carpet," he said.
"It continues with Paula Bennett and it's discouraging to see them deny these problems even exist. And when they get grilled by the media, they blame the weak, or the unemployed or the powerless. It's really hard to see," he said.
His attacks on the Government were complimented by praises for his new political family. He described Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei as a "fearless advocate for social, environmental, and economic justice".
Williams took a page out of former US President Barack Obama's election campaign from 2008 to introduce Labour leader Andrew Little.
"Andrew Little gives me hope. He has the background as someone who spent their life fighting everything that we've seen eroded since the 1980s.
"He has a long history working with workers, and to hold business and big government to account. We need to act now to turn the tide before we sign away or sell off all the rights we have to corporations. I believe this is the person to help turn the tide," he told the crowd as he introduced Mr Little.
Williams claims he doesn't have ambitions to be an MP, saying he was put off by a failed tilt at student politics while he was at Victoria University in Wellington.
"I'm probably going to not stand for Parliament, but I'm definitely running for the TV Guide's Sexiest Man again in 2017, so I'm really excited about that. I'm coming for you TK," he joked.