How many electorates will Greens contest?

It has been suggested that a nuclear option for the Greens is to not support a Labour-NZ First coalition from the cross benches. But that won’t come up until after the election.

There’s another nuclear option – to go hard out competing with Labour for both votes and for electorates in the campaign.

This must be an option that the greens have considered. At what point in perceived hopelessness for Labour’s chances will they push this button?

If Greens see little chance of getting into power after September’s election without severely compromising their integrity and credibility they may bring into a longer term plan – to become the dominant left wing party, which would have to be at Labour’s expense.

The only chance of them growing into this position iks by winning electorates.

Green Party icon Jeanette Fitzsimons won the Coromandel electorate in 1999, losing it in 2002. Since then Greens haven’t contested electorates, putting all their efforts into getting the party vote, crucial under MMP.

Until this election.

They have already signalled that they are competing for the Nelson electorate – one that they seem to have little chance of winning off Nick Smith. But this may be just a preliminary manoeuvre.

Why just one? It doesn’t seem to make sense. Will the Greens try to win more electorates?

This election Turei has decided not to contest Dunedin North, where she has done very well in the past few elections. This time she is standing in the southern Maori seat of Te Tai Tonga.

The incumbent MP is Labour’s Rino Tirikatene, who is not exactly a top MP, currently ranked 26 out of 31 in Labour’s pecking order. Like all Labour’s other Maori MPs he didn’t go on the party list this year (unlike other Maori candidates he wasn’t on the list last election either).

Turei has also shown that she fancies the Greens going for more Maori votes. This is competing very much with Labour.

Will she go hard out for Te Tai Tonga?

What about James Shaw in Wellington Central? He has done ok there in the last two elections against Labour’s Grant Robertson, but the Greens in  particular have done very well, getting more party vote than Labour in the last three elections.

If Greens could pull off Wellington Central it would be a major blow to Labour.

It would position Greens well to target what must be their ultimate ambition, to become the dominant left wing party. This means competing head to head with Labour.

With a collapse in the Labour vote this election a distinct possibility – it is being openly talked about by media – the Green outlook come coalition negotiating time looks very limited.

Greens seem to have hit a ceiling of support going for party vote only.

Actively contesting electorates could lift their party vote.

The logical way to go to the next level is to start winning electorates. Winning electorates is probably their only way of competing with Labour for being the lead opposition party, and ultimately the party leading Government.

With their negotiating position and coalition options looking very weak this election, this presents both a dilemma and an opportunity for the Greens.

They are at risk of losing third party status to NZ First, and not just on party vote. Winston Peters won the Northland by-election early this term, and NZ First seem to fancy their chances in Whangarei where Shane Jones is contesting.

Will the Greens push the nuclear button and compete hard out against Labour both for party votes and electorates?

There’s no better time than now to go for it.

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  1. The reasons why the greens are contesting Nelson is to get their hands on the estate they were left. They are capitalist enough to want the money. For them to seriously contest the electorate vote in more than a handful of seats, they need to put up viable candidates – not just their equivalent of Andrew Little and Sue Moroney. Many on the list make those to look like populists.

  2. artcroft

     /  16th July 2017

    You know where the Green’s should stand?

    Beside a giant solar wall. One with holes in it so you can throw your drugs through.
    It would be expensive either as you could get Bomber to fund raise for it.

    Just an idea.

    • artcroft

       /  16th July 2017

      Oops – wouldn’t
      #let’s all proof read carefully out there.

  3. chrism56

     /  16th July 2017

    One thing that may be worth analyzing is in the electorates that Labour won, I believe National was the runner up by a big margin. As the Greens won’t take votes from National or even NZ First, that means they will cannibalise the Labour vote. The outcome would be the electorate MP becomes a National member.
    This could be a cunning ploy to get rid of Steven Joyce or even Bill. Have them win all the electorates so they get no list members

  4. Turei is no threat to Tirikatne…. he is connected to the electorate by blood ties that Meteria lacks. How many Tirikatnes have represent the South Island Maori electorate in parliament?

  5. stop press : this is MMP not FPP, its not about ‘winner take all’ but about ‘coalitions’
    unfortunately many of the commentators just dont get it. they could have a ‘Grand coalition’ with all parties except Natz. Even ACT agree on some issues (that natz dont accept) : cannabis reform, euthanasia etc.:)

    The only thing they really ALL need to focus on is ‘Party Vote;

    • I disagree. If Greens want to grow as large as they have ambitions for then I think they have to also start winning some electorates.

      • Zedd

         /  16th July 2017

        it doesn’t hurt Pete for credibility,, but we all know the PV determines the outcome.. so “PARTY VOTE…u/f ” ?

        • I think it will improve their party vote.

          It’s always seemed a bit odd saying ‘I don’t matter, vote for the green party’.

          They should try ‘I’m great so vote for me, and my party’s also great so vote for that too to ensure I and others like me get in’.

  1. How many electorates will Greens contest? — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition

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