Key vs Sharples, who do you believe?

Written By: - Date published: 10:18 am, October 16th, 2008 - 71 comments
Categories: election 2008, john key, maori party, national - Tags:

On September 28, Key released National’s policy on the Maori seats. It is unequivocal (if light on the details): “At the conclusion of the settlement of historic Treaty claims, National will begin a constitutional process to abolish the Maori seats. National wishes to see all New Zealanders on the same electoral roll.”

Pretty clear. The first thoughts of anyone reading that, of course, is ‘there goes any chance of a deal with the Maori Party’. Not so, Sharples told us. According to him, Key had privately assured him the Maori seat policy would not go ahead without the agreement of Maori: “”I’ve pinned him down. I said, ‘you admit to me that you won’t get rid of those seats until Maori people say yes’ and he said that’s what he would do.”. That contradicts National’s official policy.

During the Leaders’ debate on Tuesday, Shane Taurima asked Key to clear up the matter: “Pita Sharples says that you told him privately that you would not abolish the Maori seats without Maori consent. Now since that you’ve denied saying that, are you calling Dr Sharples a liar?”

Key waffles that he has met with the Maori Party and they don’t like the policy. Taurima persists: “So who’s telling the truth here?”

Key gets that rabbit-in-the-spotlight look and tries to change the question: “But there is no formal agreement”

Sainsbury rouses himself: “Pita Sharples has said you told him privately don’t worry about the Maori seats, we can push that aside. Did you or didn’t you?”

Key: “No that is not correct.”

Sainsbury: “Why would Pita Sharples say that then?”

Key: “Well I think he’s got that wrong, sorry, but he’s got it wrong”

So, Key tries to avoid answering the question – talking about ‘formal agreements’, rather than secret ones – but, in the end, he says Sharples is wrong.

Last night on the AltTV, Sharples bit back: ‘I was saying, you can’t do this and he was saying ‘yes, yes”

So, who to believe? The one who has been evasive on the issue? Who has a record of lying to the public and the media? The one whose first instinct when caught out seems to be to lie? No. Once again, Key has lied to the public and, once again, he has been caught out.

71 comments on “Key vs Sharples, who do you believe? ”

  1. Nick 1

    It has been clear all along that there is a conflict of evidence, and both gentlemen are honourable gentlemen. One assumes there is some innocent explanation

  2. Tara 2

    How do you (or Sharples or Key) define “Maori consent” ?

    Maori are not monolithic.

    Would it be by referendum within the Maori electoral roll, by iwi, hapu, marae, or tribe ? What about urban Maori, or people whose descent or relationships disregard traditionalist definitions of Maori and Pakeha ?

    A referendum would involve an electoral campaign, creating division at precisely the time when we need unity with (to borrow a quote from a NZ memoir) “the Great Depression rolling in as inexorably as the fog rolls in from the sea”.

    Key’s legacy to Aotearoa.

  3. gobsmacked 3

    According to the Herald and Stuff, there were two other witnesses present.

    Maori Party chief of staff Harry Walker confirms Sharples’ story.

    But Bill English is not returning calls.

    Will Bill sacrifice his own reputation to save John? Stay tuned.

  4. higherstandard 4

    Sharples of course.

    I doubt there is any formal agreement, I also have no doubt that if the Nats want and need to get alongside the Maori party that they would have no issue with agreeing with the Maori party on not removing the Maori seats unless the Maori party and their constituency agreed to have them removed.

    If I was in a potential PMs shoes after the election I’d get alongside the Maori party regardless if I needed them to form a government or not for the following reasons.

    1. Assuming the Maori seats are not going to be removed in the foreseeable future they will remain an important force under MMP.

    2. Maori continue to be over represented in many negative statistics (crime, poverty, disease) – In my opinion the Maori party are in a unique position to present and implement and plan to turn around these statistics and most importantly to most importantly to get the buy in from their people. I think if both the major parties were honest they’d accept that despite their best efforts and some notable successes that they’d both only score a must do better when it comes to looking after Maori in NZ (as would the Maori leadership over the same period).

  5. Dom 5

    All Key is doing is damaging relationships between National and the Maori Party at the very time they need to be keeping their options open.

    Does Key not know the point of MMP?

  6. rosa 6

    Key intends to get rid of MMP. He knows that left wing policies are supported by the majority of NZers and long term Labour will be the ruling party under MMP. There were a number of elections when Labour won on percentages but didn’t get into parliament because of the unfairness of FPP. Key will say ANYTHING to get elected this time and if he gets in with a landslide we will watch as democracy is rolled back. I wish the mainstream media would give this issue with the Maori seats some headlines- Key is such a liar and people need to know this BEFORE they elect him!!

  7. higherstandard 7

    Rosa Key cannot get rid of MMP only the NZ public can.

    Can you explain how and government could possibly roll back democracy in NZ any more than the state it is currently in ?

    Which left wing policies are supported by the majority of NZers and which are you concerned that a non labour led government would roll back or abolish ?

  8. Lew 8

    Nick: Heh, excellent.

    Tara: Good question.

    The māori party line on this is constant and frequent consultation by hui. They conduct this for practically all their policy decisions. They claim mandate to distill the results of those hui into a consensus on the grounds that they represent the Māori Treaty partner. They make this claim on the grounds that they’re the only party whose policy and principles are explicitly derived from Māori political philosophy and tradition. This isn’t an uncontentious claim, but it’s also not entirely baseless – and its validity is a matter which is being debated and worked over around the country as we speak, and so much more so if they do win all the Māori seats as they hope. In my view it’s the most interesting issue in NZ political history.

    I don’t know how John Key or any other Westminster-style party would define `consent’. Referendum would be a very poor approach. I would expect that when the number of electors on the Māori electoral roll withers to a certain point, that’d be taken as the strongest sign that the seats aren’t needed.

    Incidentally, I think the current kaumatua in the māori party leadership now are largely creating ideological space for Māori political involvement in their own ters. In the coming decade we’ll see a power transfer from those now in their fifties and sixties to those in their thirties and forties – young leaders like Willie Te Aho, Kahungunu Barron-Afeaki (though I don’t claim to know their allegiances or even whether they support the māori party), with more explicit political and legal training and experience, will come to the fore and the party will be better placed to succeed and represent Māori perspectives without the need for the Māori seats. The key to this is ideological space – normalising Māori political philosophies in NZ political culture.

    Turning to the post: John Key can only lose from this. I commented on another thread about this earlier – see here. He might have gotten away with it if he’d said there was a `misunderstanding’ or somesuch, but there now genuinely is a conflict of evidence, and that breeds distrust and uncertainty on both sides.

    L

  9. Lew 9

    HS: Because the māori party doesn’t contest the party vote but can be relied upon to win the Māori electorates, they’d be in a much stronger position under FPP than they are under MMP as long as those seats remain. That doesn’t mean they’d support a return to FPP, though, because as soon as those seats go, they need MMP to survive.

    L

  10. Felix 10

    hs,

    I agree entirely.

    But don’t you think Key should formally announce the unofficial understanding that Sharples describes?

    My reading of it is that Key is telling the truth to the maori party and deceiving his own party. That can’t be in anyone’s interests, surely.

  11. Was there a contradiction? National says… “National will begin a constitutional process to abolish…” Suppose the “constitutional process” includes getting the agreement with Maori (taking on board Tara’s point)?

    There can be little doubt that Sharples’ account is correct, and Key couldn’t bring himself to admit what National’s bold words really mean. The slippery buggers have tried to pull a swifty here and been found out.

  12. randal 12

    forget all the blah blah blah. both are untrustworthy and neither deserve any further elevation. sharples is frozen in time somewhere and keys is shifty.

  13. Tim Ellis 13

    I don’t think it’s a question of who is telling the truth. I think it is much more a question of whether Key is handling the situation ideally. I don’t think he is, and he doesn’t need friction between National and the Maori Party.

    I think what he should have said was: “I apologise to Pita Sharples if I left him with that impression, and I take responsibility for him believing that we would drop our plan immediately. I can see how he might have taken that view from the discussion, but that wasn’t my intention. National Party policy is to abolish the Maori seats. The Maori Party’s policy is to retain them. It isn’t a bottom line for us. It does appear to be a bottom line for them. I’m confident that if we do sit down to build a coalition government after November 8, then we can resolve our differences, as we will on all policy issues.”

  14. rosa 14

    Key can get rid of MMP. There are a surprising number of people who still support FPP – they find the minor parties annoying. Set up a a binding referendum and if the right throw enough money at it in the form of propoganda MMP will be gone. Even after the excesses of the 80’s and 90’s and the hatred of the governments who had unbridled power and inflicted those policies us we *only just* got MMP. The results were very, very close. Key has said he intends to have a referendum on MMP.

  15. Lew 15

    rosa: No, Key can’t. Parliament can.

    L

  16. Pascal's bookie 16

    Tim, I agree that lieing about it was a poor way to handle the situation.

    Perhaps he should just tell Pita that he was talking about Australian Maori seats.

  17. higherstandard 17

    Rosa

    So if the majority in NZ support scrapping MMP (not that I think they will) it will be Key’s fault …… OK then.

    Felix – It’s politics and what makes many including myself so dismissive and distrusting of politicians. I’d suggest the National party are perfectly aware of the discussions with the Maori party.

    It’s reasonably easily handled by the fact that no-one’s going to do anything with the Maori seats during the next electoral cycle anyway – from where I’m sitting it amazes me that both of the major parties can’t just tell it like it is at times.

    For example I don’t think anyone would get upset (apart from those who have already entrenched positions) if Key said ‘of course the Maori party are committed to keeping the Maori seats and representing their constituents our long term position is that the Maori seats will become unnecessary over time. If we were in post election talks with the Maori party and looking to form a government with their input and assistance and the Maori seats were a critical issue we’d have to look at reaching an agreement about that – personally I don’t see it as a major hurdle.

  18. gobsmacked 18

    The problem is clear.

    As Prime Minister, Key must insist that all media questions are recorded on YouTube, not asked by a live human being. He will then be able to respond with the prepared platitude, vaguely relating to the topic.

    e.g. for any question on education:

    “More Kiwi kids must learn how to read and write, under my watch! It is a crusade!”

    Prime Minister Key’s weekly post-Cabinet press conference will be conducted in this manner. There will be no live journalists, and so no follow-up questions. It is only this unhelpful – and frankly rather rude – insistence on getting an answer that creates all this unnecessary confusion.

    As long as this simple rule is followed, John Key will be fine. And so will we.

  19. Matthew Pilott 19

    I would expect that when the number of electors on the Māori electoral roll withers to a certain point, that’d be taken as the strongest sign that the seats aren’t needed.

    What’s the incentive to drop off the Maori roll?

    I don’t think it’s a question of who is telling the truth. I think it is much more a question of whether Key is handling the situation ideally.

    Er, the truth doesn’t matter, the spin around covering up who is lying or who is ‘confused’ is more important? I’m afraid not, Tim. If Key is continuing his theme of saying whatever people want to hear, whether it contradicts with what he has previously said to other groups, then people have a right to know.

    If I was part of an interest group, this would interest me greatly. I’d then know it would be in my interest to find out what else Key has said on the topic, especially to conflicting groups, as it seems there’s a greater than even chance he’d have said something approaching the polar opposite, if it suited him at the time.

    I’d then at least have the information at hand to try and guess whether the truth Key told me was more likely to be the truth than what he said to a different group. That would be a very difficult task though, I don’t envy those who have found themselves having to pick among his contradictions.

  20. Tane 20

    Perhaps he should just tell Pita that he was talking about Australian Maori seats.

    Ah, it never gets old.

  21. higherstandard 21

    GS

    ” It is only this unhelpful – and frankly rather rude – insistence on getting an answer that creates all this unnecessary confusion.”

    Sounds like parliamentary question time !

  22. randal 22

    first and foremost JOKeys will never be prime minister. He does not have the right stuff and secondly the Maori party are lost somehwere in a history that they are simultaneoulsy trying to invent and negate depending on what suits them. Sure they might carry on on the stump but in the final washup they are just wisps waiting for the next puff of dust to blow them away.

  23. gobsmacked 23

    Sharples will be on Radio Live (between 12 and 1). Could be interesting.

  24. Tony Norriss 24

    If you accept Sharple’s word about Key, do you also accept his word about being hevied by Labour? You can’t have it both ways.

  25. insider 25

    Hmmm – so a person working for Sharples agrees with him and that is proof of “lying’. Yeah, ok…
    Just listened to Sharples. He is a lot vaguer about what was actually said than Steve implies, though he doesn’t resile from his view. He doesn’t call Key a liar. He said they had a long discussion. He said what the MP process was, Key said what his was (re Maori seats). PS said the MP would not agree to the removal of the seats without the consent of Maori and he says JK agreed to that. But he also accepts JK may not believe that was what he agreed to and might have believed the discussion ‘ended’ earlier than that ie they talked further but without agreement.
    He also said the disagreement didn’t really make any difference to any future relationship between the parties.

  26. gobsmacked 26

    I’m sure Bill English, who was also present, will be keen to clear this up.

    He’s just had problems with his mobile for the past 24 hours, that’s all.

  27. insider 27

    Money quote IMO from Sharples

    “The way it all started was that I was explaining what would be our bottom line, that the seats cannot go unless Maori say so, and I kept saying that, and in the end he sort of agreed and agreed and agreed, so maybe in his own head he thought he hadn’t agreed, but he had.”

    He “sort of agreed”??? That’s hardly definitive.

  28. insider 28

    gob

    BE has back Key’s version according to Stuff. Mexican standoff?

  29. gobsmacked 29

    Insider, same source:

    “Dr Sharples said on Alt TV that straight after Mr Key had agreed with him over the seats issue Mr English changed the subject.”

    Now that rings true. English is smart enough to see a landmine. It’s just a question of whether Key had already stepped on it.

  30. r0b 30

    If you accept Sharple’s word about Key, do you also accept his word about being hevied by Labour? You can’t have it both ways.

    Could you refer me to what Sharples actually said there Tim – his words? Because when I heard him on the radio he described the conversation with Horomia as a discussion between friends.

  31. higherstandard 31

    r0b

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/4704117a6160.html

    Today Dr Sharples said he was “disappointed” over attempts to influence his party.

    “I personally had two separate phone calls from a senior minister urging me to vote in favour of Winston, and suggesting that there would be unpleasant repercussions from Maori people if I didn’t,” he said in a statement.

    “Both (fellow co-leader) Tariana Turia and myself were disgusted with this kind of activity, aimed at perverting the course of justice and fair play.”

    Mr Horomia told NZPA he talked frequently with Dr Sharples and was due to meet him at 4pm today.

    “We talk about a whole lot if issues.”

    Asked about the specific calls, he said: “We had discussions, we had discussions about a whole lot of things.”

    Mr Horomia said he had a “continuous open exchange” with the Maori Party.

  32. insider 32

    r0b

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/4704345a6160.html

    Labour, NZ First tried to heavy us – Maori Party

    Dr Sharples told reporters the minister asked how his party would vote and said there could be repercussions from Maori.

    “Both (fellow co-leader) Tariana Turia and myself were disgusted with this kind of activity, aimed at perverting the course of justice and fair play.”

    “Mr Horomia said he was extremely disappointed by Dr Sharples’ comments and said their conversations were being misrepresented.” Sound familiar?

  33. Tim Ellis 33

    r0b, that wasn’t me making that point, but it is a good point.

  34. rosa 34

    Lew- National and National+Act could have a majority this time and then they certainly can return us to FPP.
    HS- The right threw a vast amount of money at this issue last time so clearly they didn’t regard MMP as in their best interests. And it isn’t.The centre/left became the predominant flavour of politics after MMP because the left was no longer penalised by its vote being split.I would imagine the right would throw all their resources into one last bid to get rid of MMP. Sadly with enough money and media you can convince some people of anything and you just need to work on those people who despise the minor parties. Democracy is necessarily somewhat messy and some people don’t understand that.

  35. insider 35

    rosa

    Think you might find it is entrenched legislation…stop taking the paranoia pills.

  36. Lew 36

    rosa: Two flaws with this idea.

    1. That’s not John Key doing it – that’s parliament.

    2. Why the hell would ACT want a return to FPP? They’d essentially be limited to one MP under FPP, and even that’s a marginal case.

    L

  37. rosa 37

    Insider- if it is so entrenched why is Key going to hold a referendum??

  38. Lew 38

    Insider: Actually, it’s not entrenched. Many people think it is, but that ain’t so. See http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2006/05/entrenching-mmp.html for details.

    L

  39. Lew 39

    Rosa: Do you know what entrenchment means in this context?

    L

  40. rosa 40

    Lew- all Act want is a return to the far right. They would be quite happy inside National. Rodney could be the National mp for Epsom. And Key/parliament- same thing with a National majority which could well happen.

  41. higherstandard 41

    Rosa

    Incorrect – The first governments under the MMP system where National ones.

    I also disagree with your other assertions that a National and ACT coalition would move us back to FPP (for a start that would be the end of ACT except for perhaps the Epsom seat why would they want that ?)

    Yes a lot of money was spent during the last referendum – and we got MMP, now the public have had a chance to assess both systems what’s so scary about having another debate and a referendum on our electoral system.

    r0b regardless of National and/pr Labour’s dealings with the Maori party, they (the Maori party) should make a decision on who to support after the election be that inside or outside the government in what they view as the best interests of their constituents, I have more faith in them than any other party to do just that.

  42. rosa 42

    Lew- explain to me why Key would hold a referendum if he didn’t believe he could return NZ to FPP?

  43. Lew 43

    rosa: Bullshit. Rodney Hide dislikes National’s social conservatism almost as much as he despises Labour’s economic policy.

    L

  44. rosa 44

    HS- the first MMP government should have been a Labour one. Winston campaigned up and down NZ that a vote for him would get rid of National. Then he went into coalition with National…

  45. higherstandard 45

    Edit

    Rosa – ACT are hardly far right – I’d have thought they’re probably better classed as liberal or libertarian although Lew’s better qualified to place them in the political spectrum than myself.

  46. higherstandard 46

    Ah fair enough it was WPs fault that MMP failed to deliver a Labour led government.

  47. rosa 47

    Lew- National and Labour both used to be “broad churches” and could be again. Rodney would have no trouble fitting into National.

  48. r0b 48

    HS, Insider, Tony (sorry not TIm) – I’ve no time to check right now (later maybe), but my memory of it is that the quotes you have given refer to the NZF pressure more than Horomia – that was certainly what Sharples said on the radio. But I’ve no time right now!

  49. Lew 49

    rosa: Ok, since you seem impervious to logic, let me be crystal fucking clear:

    ONE PERSON, any person, CANNOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES change the electoral system of New Zealand (by legal means). The only body who can do that is PARLIAMENT.

    The fact that John Key as prime minister might initiate a referendum (note, the referendum still has to be passed by parliament), and the result of that referendum happens to be the passage of legislation changing the system, JOHN KEY HAS NOT DONE IT. The parliament of New Zealand, duly elected by the population and endorsed by the Crown through the governor-general is the only body which can do that. Just because Key’s party might happen to have a majority doesn’t mean he’s personally responsible. This is a really fundamental tenet of NZ democracy – the relative lack of executive authority in the Prime Minister.

    In any case, the referendum isn’t likely to be just about the return to FPP – it’s about whether to keep MMP as it is. Options could include a return to FPP, a change to STV or AMP, or a modification of the MMP system as we have it now.

    Your uneducated, ill-considered cynicism isn’t doing your credibility any favours.

    L

  50. higherstandard 50

    Rosa Key would hold a referendum because, as I remember it, the NZ pubic was promised there would be one after x years when the MMP system was introduced.

    I repeat what is so scary about letting the public decide ?

  51. Lew 51

    HS: Yes, ACT are quite explicitly classical liberals (though lots of pollies who aren’t tend to claim that they are).

    I had quite a good (and long) discussion with some ACT members about this very subject last night.

    L

  52. rosa 52

    Lew- ad hominem…

  53. HS: Yes, ACT are quite explicitly classical liberals (though lots of pollies who aren’t tend to claim that they are).

    rosa: Bullshit. Rodney Hide dislikes National’s social conservatism almost as much as he despises Labour’s economic policy

    What’s ACT’s policy on drugs, Lew?

  54. Lew 54

    HS: Actually, there was no promise – this is yet another misconception about MMP. See this statement by Nigel Roberts, probably NZ’s leading expert on electoral systems and proportional representation.

    L

  55. Pascal's bookie 55

    Sod: They don’t have one, according to their website. (Which is to say, I don’t know and can’t be arsed spending much time looking for it).

    L

  56. Pascal's bookie 56

    rosa: I’m not attacking you – I’m attacking your idiotic statements and unjustified opinions presented as fact.

    L

  57. Vanilla Eis 57

    HS: We were never promised a second referendum, and you know that. There was a review promised, which was duly carried out by the appropriate Select Committee (under a Labour Govt in 2002) and, surprise, it came back and said that MMP was fine.

    So while I doubt it was a fair review, don’t try and feed us any bullshit about a promised referendum, they are clearly very different things.

  58. Lew 58

    Fuck’s sakes. WordPress thinks I’m PB again.

    L

    [lprent: I think it is the local server/firewall cache where ever you both are. My guess is that it sends you the page that the last one logged in with, including the cookies. I’ll add some stuff to the headers to try and tell that cache not to cache the bloody pages.]

  59. vidiot 59

    MMP works, just get rid of ALL of the electorate seats, reduce the threshold for seats down to 1.2% (1 seat @ 1.2% of vote) and ditch the race based seats. Proportional representation at it’s finest. Ahh but then you whine, we would have no local representation – well that’s what your city/regional council is for (local issues).

  60. Draco T Bastard 60

    randal
    October 16, 2008 at 11:31 am

    forget all the blah blah blah. both are untrustworthy and neither deserve any further elevation. sharples is frozen in time somewhere and keys is shifty.

    I think they’re both frozen in time. One looks to the Golden Time* of classical Laissez Faire and the other to the Golden Time* of pre Pakeha NZ.

    Here’s a good cartoon about it.

    * Non-Existent, sometimes referred to as Looking into the past with rose coloured glasses on.

  61. Matthew Pilott 61

    I got a pretty booklet from Act. Did you all know they only have two MPs – Ms Roy and rockin’ Rodney. Poor old ‘nomics was out in the cold.

    Rosa – I disagree about Rodney fitting into National.

    Act: Individual rights.

    National: Business.

  62. higherstandard 62

    VE

    Sorry I was under the wrong impression having read somewhere that a referendum was promised – please don’t accuse me of trying to feed you bullshit.

    Although I do accept there is a fair amount of bullshit on this site.

    I say again what is so scary about letting the public decide on whether we should continue with MMP under it’s current guise amend it or change to something else ?

    There are several problems with our current MMP system (IMO) that we could perhaps iron out with a bit of thought and who knows we might have a better parliamentary democracy for NZ ?

  63. insider 63

    Lew

    Re entrenchment. Silly me, i relied on the electoral office guidance. http://elections.catalyst.net.nz/maori/ntkm-democracy/rights-in-nz.html#gen3

    I now know I should have just gone to the Palmerston North oracle… 😉

  64. bomber 64

    Hey Folks, I interviewed Dr Pita Sharples for Let’s be Frank the day National launched it’s policy to dump the Maori Seats, it’s posted on you tube and the Maori Party website if you want to check it out, I put it to Dr Pita Sharples that he had been ambushed by the policy, Dr Pita Sharples told me in that interview that what he was being told in private was very different to what John Key was telling the public about the Maori seats. Based on that interview, Shane Taurima quizzed John Key on Dr Sharples statement during the TVNZ debate on Tuesday, John Key told everyone Dr Sharples was wrong, we put that to him on our minor party right of reply to the TVNZ debate last night and Dr Pita Sharples was adamant that John Key gave an assurance he would not abolish the seats and this version of events has now been backed up by a National party staffer.

    John Key is telling the Maori Party one thing in private and his more reactionary electorate another thing in public. This is an election about ‘trust’ – John Key can’t be trusted on meeting Lord Ashcroft, he can’t be trusted on the amount of Tranz Rail shares and now we can’t trust what he’s saying regarding the political voice of Maoridom.

    Cheers
    Bomber
    http://www.tumeke.blogspot.com
    http://www.alttv.co.nz

  65. Vanilla Eis 65

    Sorry, HS – I’m pretty sure I’ve been over that point a couple of times already on this site, and I’m having a crap day at work.

    The general perception is that NZ is owed a referendum, but this is incorrect. If people honestly believed that they were owed one then I’d be quite happy for them to take a petition to Parliament to force a referendum. Good luck figuring out the question, however.

    MMP isn’t perfect, but if the referendum is between MMP and FPP I’ll take the current system any day of the week. Idiot/Savants post on the outcome of the Canadian election illustrates the failings of a FPP-based system.

    http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2008/10/canadian-election-results.html

  66. higherstandard 66

    VE

    I don’t think the referendum should or would be between MMP and FPP once you’ve got past the turds who are giving you grief at work have at look at this which someone forwarded to me and is where I’m coming from.

    http://www.nzcpr.com/guest71.htm

    You might not like the person writing the piece but he makes some interesting points – I see he also makes the point that we were never promised a referendum.

  67. Lew 67

    G’day Bomber. Cheers for the link. Your comment says a National staffer has confirmed Sharples’ line, while the link it points to says it was Harry Walker, of the māori party. Do you know anything more?

    L

  68. Ben R 68

    Under MMP is this kind of thing really that surprising? You need to make concessions & suggest to the other side what you might be prepared to compromise on. Usually those kind of discussions would be treated as private, just as a lawyer may make a without prejudice offer to try and settle a case. Here one side has made the discussion public, just as they did when Labour lobbied them to not censure Peters.

  69. bomber 69

    Doh – sorry Lew, mis-type

  70. Vanilla Eis 70

    HS – it’s less the co-workers and more the fact that I’m trying to give up coffee.

    Decent article – I actually have a fair bit of respect for Brash, but more for his work as head of the RB than anything he achieved (or tried to) politically. The article is decent, but I still see the man as an economist. I’d like to learn more about the SM system, but my gut instinct is that a heavier reliance on electorates will disenfranchise, for example, the Greens who garner a healthy % of the overall vote (6% or so) but fail to win any particular seat. Under the SM plan outlined by Brash, they would seem to be entitled to around 2 seats – which is hardly a representation proportionate to their vote.

  71. Lew 71

    The māori party has by drafting a bill entrenching the Māori seats and requiring support for it for coalition has forced both major parties (and the electorate) to declare their hands. If National wants the māori party to support them in government, they will need to agree to the bill. Labour (according to Radio NZ National, though it’s not on their website yet) have said they approve in principle.

    I expect this issue will be the one which decides the election – unless The NACT gets a clear majority.

    L

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  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
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