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National Party MP Todd Muller has today put his hand up to be a champion for responsible drinking in Parliament.

“That doesn’t mean I’m coming out as an advocate for abstinence. What I’m coming out in support of is a positive drinking culture in New Zealand and a responsible approach to alcohol” Mr Muller said.

“I’m sure there are all sorts of scientific measures for what would constitute ‘responsible’ drinking – but like most New Zealanders that isn’t what I use as my yard stick. The yard stick I prefer is common sense”.

“I have absolutely no issue with someone going home and having a drink with dinner after work or having a couple of drinks with friends while you watch the All Blacks on the weekend”.

“The drinking becomes irresponsible when it becomes several drinks a day, every day. It becomes irresponsible when you’re drinking the better half of a box of beer in a single session – binge drinking”. 

“If we are being really honest, I don’t think there would be many New Zealanders who haven’t at some stage had to step back and take a long hard look at their drinking. I know I’ve had to have that look in the mirror before”.

“Maybe you’ve had to ease off the beers because it’s holding back your fitness and you want to make it into the next tier of rugby. Maybe you’ve had to cut back on the wines because they’re holding you back in your career and you really want that promotion. Perhaps you’ve just needed to get on top of your health” he added.

“I’m a big believer that too much of the Kiwi social fabric is intertwined with a drinking culture that makes it difficult for those who are trying to ease off. You either find yourself sober with drinking going on around you, or remove yourself from that scene and get a bit isolated”.

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