Mixed Green messages on National

It was notable that at yesterday’s launch of the Labour-Green Memorandum of Understanding Metiria Turei did all the speaking for the Greens alongside Andrew Little.

Both Turei and Little kept repeating that the MoU was focussed on changing the government and wasn’t looking beyond next year’s election.

1. Our Purpose

a) The parties agree to work co-operatively to change the Government at the 2017 election.

So there was no commitment to any possible coalition arrangements after the election.

But there’s two things that muddy the Green waters – James Shaw, and the Green party membership who are supposed to decide what happens.

Newshub reports Greens waver on ruling out National

Co-leaders James Shaw and Metiria Turei seem to have differing opinions on whether they’d accept an unlikely offer to side with National, should it get them into power.

Mr Shaw says the party’s first preference is Labour — hence yesterday’s show-and-tell of the two parties’ memorandum of understanding.

“When we’ve cooperated, both of our polls have actually gone up — and when we haven’t cooperated, we’ve tended to take votes off each other,” he told Newshub this morning.

“Preference” is the key word here — Mr Shaw wouldn’t rule out National altogether, saying it’s up to the membership.

That has always been what the Greens have said in the past – any coalition arrangement should be decided by the membership, not the leadership.

But Ms Turei says it is “absolutely definitive” the party is committed to removing National from power.

“Our 100 percent commitment is changing the Government because they are so terrible for this country,” she told Paul Henry this morning.

Transcript from this morning:

Paul Henry: Same question to you Metiria, if National come to you after the election and they have the better deal for the environment than Labour will you shaft Labour?

Metiria Turei: We are committed to changing the Government.  National has left new Zealanders living in their cars rather than dealing with the housing crisis, allowed the pollution of our waterways, allowed the climate pollution.

We will not tolerate a Government that does so much harm to our country any more.

Paul Henry: So that is definitive, that is definitive, you have completely ruled out shafting Labour.

Metiria Turei: Look our party makes the final decision later next year, but I am telling you now our one hundred percent commitment is to changing this Government because they are so terrible for this country.

So the membership get to decide but Turei is 100% committed to what she and Labour have decided.

She sounds like she is 100% against doing any coalition deal with National already.

How much say did co-Leader Shaw have? He looked like a spectator yesterday.

Did the Green Party membership get a say in the Memorandum?

Perhaps Turei is confident she can convince the membership to do it her way. If Greens get an opportunity.

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  1. artcroft

     /  1st June 2016

    More and more this MOU seems to be a drawing up of borders on Labour’s part. No they won’t be sharing billboards or withdrawing candidates in key electorates. No they won’t guarantee the Greens a coalition place in a Labour led govt. No Grant Robinson won’t be giving up the Finance portfolio (what does that tell you?). What made Metiria grin like a cheshire cat when she signed this? Its crap for them.

    • “No Grant Robinson won’t be giving up the Finance portfolio (what does that tell you?).”

      It tells you nothing of merit, or that they haven’t considered having to deal with Winston yet.

      • artcroft

         /  1st June 2016

        It tells you either that the Robinson fraction is strong enough to stare Andy down or that Labour thinks the Greens are a liability on economics (and what do the Greens make of that?).

  2. Brown

     /  1st June 2016

    What I took from this conflict in statements is that Shaw was pretending to identify as a man or be seen as relevant. I suspect no-one was fooled.

  3. Kitty Catkin

     /  1st June 2016

    This is the marriage of convenience to end all marriages of convenience. As soon as the election’s over, they’re off to the divorce court-let’s hope that it doesn’t have any fans.

    The unholy alliance could well be the old man and the donkey in real life.

    • They have already been shacking up for a while but they are now engaged. Once the baby is born they will decide whether to get married, or see if the old grandfather forces them to split.


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