Green horse trading bombed

A leaked Green email suggests an attempt at negotiating with Labour over some minor policies – and Martyn Bradbury is having a fit over it.

Stuff:  Horse trading between Labour and Greens to get NZ First’s ‘Waka Jumping’ bill across the line

Labour, NZ First and National have all decried a Green Party MP’s suggestion that horse trading could be used as a negotiating tactic to get a national “Parihaka Day”.

The Green Party is considering opposing NZ First’s “Waka Jumping” bill – a deal struck in coalition talks – unless Labour gives it a national “Parihaka Day”.

Green Party justice spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman, in an internal email obtained by Stuff, suggested some horse trading with Labour to acknowledge the fact the party has long opposed waka jumping legislation.

Ghahraman’s suggested her colleague Marama Davidson’s bill, which recognises the anniversary of the invasion of Parihaka by making it a National Day, be put on the table for Government support.

That’s an odd sort of policy trade.

Justice Minister Andrew Little, deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and National deputy leader Paula Bennett have all rallied against the idea of horse trading, saying its use is inappropriate when it comes to getting legislation through.

Little said he supported the idea of a day to commemorate the Māori land wars, but didn’t want to see a national “Parihaka Day” the subject of some “cheap horse trading exercise”.

The “Waka Jumping” bill has been drafted by Justice Minister Andrew Little and the email suggests he’s already agreed to some amendments.

Peters said he wasn’t aware of the conversations between Little and Ghahraman but NZ First didn’t horse trade.

“We don’t sell our principles, we don’t either half-way in or half-way out. If something is sound we’ll back it … but I think horse trading on matters of principle are thoroughly bad.”

Peters wouldn’t say if he supported the idea of a national “Parihaka Day” other than to say “if an idea’s got merit, it’s got merit on its own”.

Bennett said it was “disgraceful” for any political party to think they could horse trade on any matter.

“It should be seen on its merits, for what it is, for what value it adds to democracy and for the people of New Zealand, and not just something you can trade away for something else you see as important.”

Isn’t that what the post-election negotiations were all about? I thought deals and trade offs were a major part of politics.

In the email Ghahraman said Little had “unlawfully” shown her a “ministerial advice paper” about proposed waka jumping legislation but not the full text of the bill.

In response Little said Ghahraman had likely misunderstood his “dry sense of humour” and he was making a joke that he was possibly breaking “Cabinet protocol”.

“I made a flippant remark … it was the advice paper as a precursor to the paper that goes to the Cabinet, which is ultimately the basis of the legislation. No unlawful activity was entered into.”

A spokesperson for the Green Party said this was an “internal document that was sent in error”.

Seems like some inexperience from Ghahraman , and possibly also from Little.  It’s embarrassing that this has been made public.

Martyn Bradbury is seriously unimpressed:  How ill prepared are the Greens for Government? This ill prepared…

They want  to blackmail the Government into supporting an idea that stands on its own two feet? Wouldn’t that in fact dishonour the very values Parihaka Day is supposed to espouse?

Are they listening to what they are saying for Gods sake?

This leak means the idea is utterly dead. There’s no way Labour or NZ First could look like they have been blackmailed into supporting Parihaka Day when they would have likely supported it anyway.

I’ve had my concerns about the Greens for some time, this leak has been a cringeworthy exercise in seeing how right those concerns were.

It gets funny when Bradbury gets into Peters’ fiscal doom territory.

Why does Winston want this waka jumping legislation in place?

He wants it in place because he knows there is one hell of a global economic correction coming and he knows the first thing the right wing do when a crisis of that magnitude threatens their wealth is they buy who they need to protect that wealth.

Winston is inoculating his own Party from having MPs who can be bought by National when the economy hits the skids, that’s why he included it in the negotiations with Labour. With that law in place he knows he can hold his Party together when the worst hits. This is a stability measure that holds the new Government together, what the internal memo shows is that the Greens seems to have no fucking clue as to why Winston wants this law, and they don’t understand that passing it strengthens the stability of the Government they themselves are part of!

Some people have a bit to learn about being in and supporting a Government.

Bradbury seems to have forgotten how National handled an actual global economic correction – everything they do has to be bombed apparently.


  1. Gerrit

     /  November 16, 2017

    This after just three weeks, 2 years and 51 weeks to go. Can this coalition last?

  2. chrism56

     /  November 16, 2017

    Does Mr Bradbury have any credibility as a commentator? I can’t think of any of his predictions being right and a lot spectacularly wrong.

  3. Blazer

     /  November 16, 2017

    the Greens can fuck this whole Govt up with their unpopular ..’principles’.

  4. Alan Wilkinson

     /  November 16, 2017

    No. His opinions are stupid and his predictions are wrong.

  5. Corky

     /  November 16, 2017

    Crikey, it’s not good when even the Bomber is putting his boot in.

  6. robertguyton

     /  November 16, 2017

    It wasn’t leaked. Surely, pete, you want to be regarded as an honest commentator?

    • Ok. “in an internal email obtained by Stuff”. It somehow leaked out of private communications.

      • robertguyton

         /  November 16, 2017

        Bullshit, Pete, the author said clearly it was inadvertently sent to Fairfax. I’m very disappointed in you.

        • Why didn’t you just clarify that’s what happened then? I missed that – it was a quick post while multi tasking.

      • Ray

         /  November 16, 2017

        Golriz Ghahraman seems a little accident prone, second media stuff up.
        Just as well the three strike thing is going.

    • Or are you suggesting it was willingly give to media by Green Party PR?

      • robertguyton

         /  November 16, 2017

        Pete – grow up!

        • Gerrit

           /  November 16, 2017

          Under the rules established when Hager used stolen emails to write a few books and ALL journalists published widely the information in the books unde rthe guise that it was in the “public interest”, why should this leaked, stolen or accidentally and carelessly released Green party email not be considered “in the public interest” and a such anyone can publish or comment on it.

          • robertguyton

             /  November 16, 2017

            Of course Fairfax have the right to use the material, Gerrit, it was sent to them. Whether they should use it, is another questionn altogether.

        • Very funny Robert. You display a lot of immaturity here, frequently.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  November 16, 2017

          Not all leaks are advertent.

          • I think it’s just another attempt at diversion from Robert.

            Justice Minister Andrew Little says it would be “a bit cheap” to do a deal with the Greens in exchange for their support for the waka-jumping bill.

            A bit cheap do you think Robert?

            • robertguyton

               /  November 16, 2017

              No, I don’t think my comments are ” a bit cheap”, Pete. Your’e whipping up nonsense over comments that were, as the person involved said, inadvertently released to Fairfax. Your gossip-mongering is negated by that simple statement of fact. Why are you failing in your stated aim to be open, honest and fair? Are you angling to become the next Women’s Weekly???

            • You don’t like something that’s come out, you attack someone. Your diversions are fairly transparent Robert.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  November 16, 2017

      It was leaked, Robert. Inadvertently. Nothing dishonest about saying so.

      • robertguyton

         /  November 16, 2017

        Pfffftt – semantics. “Leaked” implies intent. As you know. Accidentally leaked, okay, but leaked? Get real you people!

  7. Gezza

     /  November 16, 2017

    FWIW I’ve always considered a leaked document to be something that has leaked into the public arena that wasn’t intended to be publicly known. Leaks can occur either accidentally through stupdity or misadventure, or delberately, thru someone’s disloyalty or malevolence.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  November 16, 2017

      Bugger. Had to give you an uptick for agreeing with me. Don’t do it again.

    • Gerrit

       /  November 16, 2017

      Should a journalist act on the information that “carelessly and accidentally” falls into his lap? Hager certainly would. And is he not the patron saint of journalist?

  8. Gerrit

     /  November 16, 2017

    If that had been a National party “careless and accidental” passed internal information, to a newspaper reporter, would Mr Guyton be as upset?

  9. robertguyton

     /  November 16, 2017

    I’m not upset now, Gerrit. Here’s what weka reckons:
    “weka 2.1.1
    16 November 2017 at 7:35 pm
    Hmm, let’s tease this out a bit.

    It’s not a leak, apparently the email got sent to the media by mistake.

    The Herald cherry picked a bit of the email,

    The Green Party’s justice spokeswoman Golriz Ghahraman, in an internal email accidentally sent to Fairfax, floated the idea of trying to garner support for a National Parihaka Day – the subject of a Green private member’s bill.

    That’s The Herald’s interpretation.

    Here’s the actual words,

    “The Government won’t have the numbers to pass the [waka-jumping] legislation without us, and if we decided to oppose it then they would need to consider other options such as approaching the National Party, who opposed the 2005 bill,” the email says.

    “Opposing the bill would cause political tensions, given the inclusion of the bill in the Labour-NZ First coalition agreement.

    “Our Confidence and Supply Agreement gives us the independence to choose to vote against it. Supporting the bill would be seen as changing and weakening a long-standing and public party position. It would risk criticism from our core supporters.”

    To me that looks like the Greens working through a dilemma and in one email one MP has laid out some of the issues.

    During the parallel coalition negotiations, Green’s co-leader James Shaw put his faith in Jacinda Ardern to ensure that there was nothing in the Labour-NZF deal that the Greens would object to – though he conceded there might be policies that he might not be comfortable with.”

    • Gerrit

       /  November 16, 2017

      What I see is some not so subtle black mailing going on. Hence the “careless and accidental” leak.

      Who is the Green party whip that is supposed to keep the parliamentary team in line? Who is the Greens communications leader that would vet such emails? Where is the Greens leader on keeping his team singing from the same song sheet?

      Unless this “blackmailing” had the approval of the Greens leadership, parliamentary whip and communications director and the “leak” was deliberate?

      A “leak” aimed at keeping Labour / NZ First on their guard and to expect more “horse trading”?

      Greens are playing a dangerous game.

    • That’s a much better way to deal with it. Links are also a good idea to sourced material.

  10. Alan Wilkinson

     /  November 16, 2017

    Weka is a certified idiot. Don’t expect her to be any kind of authority on the definition of leak.

    Note the difference between the verb and noun:

    “A leaked email” references the verb, not the noun.