Act Party leader David Seymour was in Whanganui on Friday, delivering a speech at a public meeting as part of what the party has dubbed the "Honest Conversations" tour around New Zealand.
A group of around 60 party supporters and prospective voters gathered at the Whanganui Function Centre to hear from the MP, who also represents the electorate of Epsom.
Seymour is nearing the end of his three-week tour being held during Parliament's recess - a tour he says shows Act's commitment to voters.
"Parliament's closed for three weeks, so your property is all safe, but some MPs treat it as a holiday. We use it to get out and hear what's on people's minds," Seymour told the Chronicle.
The third-term MP said for communities like Whanganui there was a growing list of issues that people felt the Government wasn't taking the right approach on.
"People are very worried about how New Zealand gets back to normal out of Covid. They want to see a plan.
"There's also a feeling the Government is constantly punishing people who do positive things. I think people quite rightly have said that as a landlord, the Government trusts the Mongrel Mob more than them."
Seymour said crime was a growing issue in smaller provincial regions like Whanganui.
"Retailers, for example, tell us that one of their biggest problems is the safety of their staff and anti-social behaviour. We've released our law and order policy earlier this week to crack down on gangs and make upskilling a core part of parole."
Joining Seymour was one of Act's nine new MPs, rural spokesman Mark Cameron, who said he was the only practising farmer in Parliament.
"I'm actually in the middle of calving at the moment," Cameron said.
Cameron said one of the biggest concerns for rural communities was the Government's approach towards farmers.
"There are concerns about a lot of things - freshwater management, the bureaucracy and politicians out of Wellington setting umbrella rules without no idea of what they looks like in real terms.
"Then you've got SNAs [Significant Natural Areas], and that's the length and breadth of the country. People see it as an erosion of their private property rights."
While the party was currently polling at some of its highest rates since its founding in 1994, Seymour said he wasn't focused on anything other than the work in front of him.
"Everyone asks about being the Leader of the Opposition or whatever; what I say to all of our MPs is that we're in the representation business.
"It's good to get around the country to hear what people have to say."