New Conservative, old bull and division

The New Conservative party emerged when Colin Craig and his Conservative Party were wrecked by Jordan Williams, Cameron Slater and John Stringer on the now defunct Whale Oil blog.

They are trying hard too be controversial to attract attention, and have a bit of a following, but are unlikely to get anywhere near the 5% threshold that would get them into parliament. Craig’s Conservatives got 2.65% in 2011 and 3.97% in 2014 after the party secretary resigned just before the election.

The New Conservatives don’t have the money or the profile of Craig. They have been given a bit of publicity at The BFD blog, but that’s largely seen as toxic for politics these days, especially after Slater resurfaced there, but he seems more intent on promoting Winston Peters still (which is probably negative promotion for NZ First).

And the New Conservatives seem intent on a toxic divisive approach to politics. They have tried to use the George Floyd killing and demonstrations and riots to gain some support from the political and social fringe.

That’s just conspiracy theorist divisive bull that will struggle to gain any traction in New Zealand.

It is more likely to ensure they don’t build popular support. The party has mostly polled under 1%, only twice getting to 1.1% (the last time in February 2019).


Political year review – the parties 2018

A lot of politics and politicians fly under the media radar. Some MPs make the headlines, because the have prominent jobs, because they seek publicity, or because publicity seeks them, or they cock up. Here’s a few of my thoughts and impressions on the 2018 political year.

Party-wise I don’t think there is much of note.

National and Labour have settled into competing for top party status through the year, with the poll lead fluctuating. It’s far too soon to call how this will impact on the 2020 election, with both parties having problems but still in the running.

Greens and NZ First have also settled in to competing for second level party honours. Nothing drastic has gone wrong for either, but they are both struggling to impress in the polls, and they keep flirting with the threshold. again too soon to call how this will impact on the next election.

ACT is virtually invisible, and unless something drastic changes will remain largely an MP rather than a party.

TOP is trying to reinvent itself without Gareth Morgan leading but Morgan is having trouble letting go of his influence. They have a lot of work to do to build a new profile with whoever they choose as new leader. As with any party without an MP they have an uphill battle with media and with the threshold.

The New Conservative Party is not getting any publicity, apart from their deputy leader posting at Whale Oil, which won’t do much for their credibility. The media seem disinterested, which is the kiss of political death.

No other party looks like making an impression.

With NZ First and Greens expected to struggle to maintain support while in Government (as have support parties in the past), one prospect is that the political landscape and the next election will be a two party race, with Labour and National competing to earn the votes to become a single party Government, which would be a first under MMP.

It’s too soon to call on this. A major factor could be whether voters are happy to see support parties fade away out of contention, or whether enough voters decide small party checks on power are important to maintain.

If the latter this may benefit the Greens IF voters aren’t too worried about a Labour+Green coalition who would have confidence in getting more revolutionary with a second term mandate.

For NZ First much may depend on how let down some of their support feels over a lack of living up to their promises on things like immigration and dumping the Maori seats. A lot may also depend on how Winston Peters weathers another term and whether he stands again.


Labour have won back a position as a top dog party after struggling for nearly all of the nine years they were in Opposition.

National continue to win a surprising level of support as long as individual MPs aren’t trying to sabotage the party. The Ross rampage is unlikely to be repeated as other MPs will have seen it as little more than self destructive of an individual’s political future.

So joint winners, sort of but with no prize, and no party deserving of a runner-up place.