Greens play media with Asset amendment

To get things done in parliament parties need to work together, not just work the media.

From Stuff: Dunne slams Green asset sales amendment push

United Future leader Peter Dunne is refusing to back a Greens’ amendment to keep partially sold state-owned assets open to public scrutiny, saying the party is being “mischievous”.

The Government’s legislation to enable the sale of up to 49 per cent of Mighty River Power, Genesis, Solid Energy and Meridian returns to Parliament today for a clause by clause debate.

State-owned assets are open to public scrutiny through the Official Information Act and the Ombudsman Act but under the Mixed Ownership Model Bill the partially sold enterprises would no longer be subject to those laws for commercial reasons which also exclude public companies.

Greens co-leader Russel Norman will put up an amendment to keep the state-owned assets subject such scrutiny.

However Dunne, who holds one of two crucial support votes for the Government, said today he wouldn’t be supporting the amendment.

“I’m not interested in supporting anything the Greens are putting forward on this.”

Dunne said he didn’t agree with the Greens’ opposition to asset sales.

“I think what they are being is mischievous. They are entitled to be but I’m certainly not support it. I don’t care what they are trying to do, my position is clear and I’m not budging from it.”

Norman said Dunne was being “incredibly unreasonable”.

“It’s not a very common sense position to oppose something solely on where it comes from rather than whether it is a good idea or not.”

@PeterDunneMP has just tweeted on this:

@NZStuffPolitics If the Greens expected their amendment to be taken seriously, they would have circulated it at least 24 hours in advance…

… and not via the news media on the morning of the debate

I think that’s a fair call.

Greens seem to work very well together within their party, and how to play media, but don’t seem to have figured out how to work inter-party yet. Or is it deliberate?

Would the Green Party change a policy position on the morning a significant amendment appeared in media, without consulting within the party? No, they wouldn’t. So they shouldn’t be surprised when other parties tell them to get real.

UPDATE: Peter Dunne on Facebook:

The first I heard of this amendment was when the Fairfax journalist rang me about 8:30 am this morning.

UnitedFuture may be only a small party in Parliament but it has always been and remains our policy to oppose all amendments of which we have not recevied at least 24 hours prior notice.

Leave a comment


  1. So the Greens are playing political silly buggers; who would have ever thunk it?

    In other shock news today, water is wet…

  2. Dirty politics is not helping critical decision-making. I wish they would all grow up.

  3. robertguyton

     /  19th June 2012

    The Greens are managing these issues perfectly. You can’t catch them. They’ve learned alright! You won’t ping them on the referendum support either. The public will regard you as sniping if you try to portray the Greens as they see National, Labour, NZFirst, Act and UnitedFuture. Go for it though, Pete!

  1. Green abuse of CIR could be more insidious « Your NZ
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