Peters confirms he will keep voters guessing

Winston Peters has said something definite about whether NZ First will side with National or Labour – he definitely won’t let voters know until three weeks after the election.

Newsroom: Winston reveals deadline day for coalition announcement

NZ First leader Winston Peters has revealed to Newsroom that October 12 is when NZ First will announce whether it intends to go with National or Labour in forming the next government – provided his party is in the kingmaker position after Kiwis go to the polls.

The date corresponds with the return of writs for the election, when the final election results are officially returned to the Governor General.

That seems to be an excuse to not make any public commitments until weeks after the election.

There’s a possibility the election result will be close and could hang in the balance if there are recounts.

The crucial vote is the party vote and there can be uncertainty over the final outcome – last election Andrew little didn’t know if he would make it back until the final results.

But parties should have a good idea of what the possibilities are straight after the election. I would hope they start to sound each other out and look at coalition possibilities fairly quickly.

In a 2005 speech to Grey Power in Whangarei, Peters said NZ First had “learned the hard lessons of 1996” and would not repeat the lengthy negotiations.

“I make this guarantee that whatever decision New Zealand First arrives at post-election, it will be made public by the day the writs are returned, which is within three weeks from polling day.”

While the final result in 2005 reduced NZ First’s leverage, Peters confirmed to Newsroom he would take the same approach to this year’s election.

“There’s no reason for it not to be similar thinking at this point – we are dealing with known quantities which we weren’t aware of in 1996…

“These things will take care of themselves in the fullness of time in the next eight weeks, but seeing as you’re ahead of the eight-ball, I can tell you that looks exactly sort of the position we’ll be in.”

That means that if NZ First does hold the balance of power after election day, we should be spared a drawn out negotiation process – although with Winston, nothing can ever be taken for granted.

At this stage Winston seems intent on leaving things hanging for 3 weeks after the election, and then the negotiations will begin?

I suppose each party has to maximise it’s bargaining power, but the voters get left hanging.


  1. Gezza

     /  July 25, 2017

    Peters confirms he will keep voters guessing

    Well, why not ? Christ – even his bloody portfolio spokespeople can’t ever be entirely certain the policy 🤔 they had last week is necessarily the same as the one he’ll announce to the breathlessly waiting world today ! 😕

  2. So both Liebor and National should reciprocate.
    Don’t go near the drunken git for several months and by then he’ll be more ‘amenable’

    • Gezza

       /  July 25, 2017

      Big fan too, huh?

    • PDB

       /  July 25, 2017

      Labour/Greens can have him – would be a roller coaster 3 years before the voters vote National back in for another 9 year stint.

      • Gezza

         /  July 25, 2017

        It’s posdible we’re wrong on this but hasn’t Winston basically train-wrecked every Cabinet he’s ever been part of at the next election?

  1. Peters confirms he will keep voters guessing — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition