Monday, September 15, 2014

The other option for the left

While everyone was rightly paying attention to the Key / Dotcom / GCSB revelations today, Winston Peters made a modest proposal: another Labour-NZ First coalition:

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters said today that voters should consider a Labour-New Zealand First as a potential alternative Government, not Labour and Greens, in what is the most definitive statement from him yet on post-election options.

That suggests that would keep the Green Party away from the cabinet table in any Labour-Led Government as he did in 2005.

I would prefer to see a Labour-Green government, and it would be very disappointing to see the Greens shut out again. But even Labour-NZ First would be better than what we have at present. If the numbers work, I can't see the Greens as having any real choice over supporting such a government over confidence and supply. And given the policy convergence on the left (which includes NZ First), I think they'd be happy with the broad general direction of such a government, even though many of the specific policies would not go far enough. Provided they get some redlines thwarting Winston on immigration in exchange for confidence and supply, they could then negotiate policy MOUs in areas of interest - or just sit on the crossbenches and subject every proposal to a Green veto to maximise concessions.