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Labour Green announcement – working together to change the government

Written By: - Date published: 3:10 pm, May 31st, 2016 - 288 comments
Categories: greens, labour - Tags: ,

I very much hope that Gower is right – let’s wait and see…

Livestream here.


A memorandum of understanding – Labour and Greens to work together to change the government. Inspired by last week’s failed budget.

Labour and Greens have reached an agreement – common ground. 18 months of work.

This is a significant agreement, and a significant opportunity.


NZ needs a new government. Change is on the way.

Voters want more certainty. This MOU supplies clarity – Labour and Greens are the way for change.

We will work together, we will actually change the government – make the goal real.

Thanks Andrew and Annette for cooperation and work.

Look forward to creating a better future.

[All “quotes” very approximate.]

The Memorandum of Understanding is here.


Both parties still open to working with others (not a monogamous relationship).

Government formation after election (not get ahead of ourselves) – but parties now have a mature and cooperative relationship.

Still own parties with own policies – agree to disagree clause.

This is necessary for the interests of all NZers.

Questions about NZF, but leaders are focused – determined to change the government. Any other parties who can agree and want to come on board are welcome.

New Zealanders will see two parties working together towards the next election – change the government!


Long overdue – good work all!

You can:

update link to recording of press conference

288 comments on “Labour Green announcement – working together to change the government”

  1. Clare 1

    YES!!!!! PLEASE!!!!!

    • Manuka AOR 1.1


      there is hope for the future yet

      • whateva next? 1.1.1

        small step for Labour, (and Green Party) Giant leap forward for New Zealand, great news, mature, cohesive MMP thinking.

        • Chooky

          ..how come they didnt think of it before the last Election and include Mana/Internet in the ‘memorandum of understanding’?!

          ….actually i am a bit underwhelmed

          ( the cynical side of me says it is a marriage of convenience because they are both languishing in the polls …)

          • whateva next?

            as Billy Bragg said, it is cynicism that is the enemy of socialism, not capitalism? Take heart Chooky, cohesion and cooperation will win the day, not competition…

          • mickysavage

            It was a really messy campaign and Kim Dotcom’s presence did not help. I am really pleased they have made this statement today. And like many I do not care who activists go to as long as they go to one or the other.

  2. Chris 2

    No, but Labour’s will be:

    “Regardless of anything we say about working with the Greens, the Labour Party will remain hell-bent on propping up this nasty right-wing government with continued support for a neo-liberal agenda, erosion of a democratic Parliament through its abysmal track-record as an Opposition including voting with the government for war on the poor legislation and continued failure to even recognise that we have an ever-increasing underclass, let alone do anything about.”

    There, no need to bother listening.

    • Anne 2.1

      Oh good, don’t listen Chris. Then you can’t comment about it with any degree of authority.

      I see Lab. and the Greens as being two branches of the same tree. Together they could/should be a force to be reckoned with.

      • maninthemiddle 2.1.1

        Why? In recent polls popular support just shifts between the two, without any overall gain by the left. it seems to me this will hurt the Greens by association.

        • Whateva next?

          We elect these people to make some difficult decisions, to research and debate and Cooperate for the greater good.
          Not sure why everyone elects them, then expects them to do what only they want? There are quite a few people living in NZ, do you imagine they all hold the same goals, opinions, values?
          Of course they don’t , so let the MP’s get on with working out how to unite those with social awareness please.

          • maninthemiddle

            “There are quite a few people living in NZ, do you imagine they all hold the same goals, opinions, values?”

            No, of course not. That’s why Helen Clark and John Key are the experts at MMP. They understand to be successful a political party has to be a ‘broad church’. Labour is moving in entirely the opposite direction, chasing an ever declining electorate on the left of politics.

            “let the MP’s get on with working out how to unite those with social awareness please.”

            Which people are these? Only those who vote on the left of politics?

            • whateva next?

              trying to make FPP into MMP doesn’t count, true MMP means compromise and cooperation, not manipulation and control smaller parties by baubles and patronisation

              • maninthemiddle

                Act have achieved Partnership Schools. Maori Party Whanau Ora. Both excellent policy ideas. National have also cooperated with the Greens on policy. Key knows how MMP works, Little hasn’t a clue.

                • whateva next?

                  We will have to agree to disagree with most of those statements….

      • Chris 2.1.2

        For goodness sake, Anne, it’s a challenge to Labour to start being a proper Opposition and to start saying and doing things we expect from a progressive left movement. Labour hasn’t been doing any of this for years and years. All glimpses of any suggestion of change in the past have amounted to nothing except voting with the government for anti-poor legislation. Why should we believe Labour now with not a jot of evidence they’ll ever change and every bit of evidence of more of the same. And it’s those who believe what Labour says now that keeps things that way.

        I agree entirely with you that Labour and the Greens should be two branches of the same tree and that together they could and should be a force to be reckoned with. But I say what I say as a challenge to Labour to actually make that happen, because to date the evidence is to the contrary. I am the first person to say that I hope I am wrong. I’d love to see Labour and the Greens roll this government with real and meaningful policies that create an inclusive society that everyone can fully participate in. It’s just that at the moment there’s nothing to suggest that Labour still don’t need to be pushed into doing it.

        • Anne

          I was a bit hasty there Chris. Assumed you were a rwnj trying to drive a wedge. Apols. Hope your fears have been assuaged. It’s a great start… and long may it continue.

        • Draco T Bastard

          I’d love to see Labour and the Greens roll this government with real and meaningful policies that create an inclusive society that everyone can fully participate in. It’s just that at the moment there’s nothing to suggest that Labour still don’t need to be pushed into doing it.


          There’s nothing from labour to show that they’ve dropped the failed neo-liberal BS that they brought in three decades ago.

    • Anthony Rimell 2.2

      Could not disagree with you more. The two parties have come together to show how much they have in common, and how much we need to see our current government defeated.

      • Chris 2.2.1

        As I said to Anne, I very much hope you’re correct and I hope I’m wrong. Of course change has to start somewhere but even as recent as Grant Robertson’s latest speech about what he sees as our “greatest challenges” there’s still no mention of our burgeoning underclass and what Labour’s going to do apart from the usual rhetoric based on the assumption it’ll all trickle down. So let’s just see, eh?

    • M. Gray 2.3

      At least Labour still have a social agenda Chris (housing ) unlike the current lot who are getting richer and selling all our silverware to there fat cat mates they have shown in the last few months they don’t give a damn about the homeless and we all know increasing poverty rates and homelessness is not good for our country

      • Chris 2.3.1

        Another Labour apologist, I see. Labour voted with Key et al on the last lot of anti-poor legislation. That amendment Act included removing Work and Income’s ability to not recover beneficiary debt which had been relied on to relieve beneficiaries of the undue hardship such debt causes. In this respect Labour has in fact helped to remove options that were available to the government to relieve beneficiaries of the ridiculous amounts of debt beneficiaries have been forced into because of the housing crisis. This is just one example of Labour’s handy work since 1999 when it comes to social legislation. When are people going to stop apologising for Labour by taking the most unhelpful and in fact destructive “at least they’re better than National” bullshit line that just lets them off the hook. By all means be hopeful that Labour can change, but don’t slap them on the back until they prove that what they say doesn’t turn into yet another complete and utter flip-flop.

  3. Lanthanide 3

    About effing time.

  4. mary_a 4

    A coalition announcement … I hope so, please!

  5. M. Gray 5

    NZ first need to jump on this bandwagon to but they won’t cause Winston wont want to declare who he will work with he might lose his center voters

  6. Ad 7

    Good solid political signal.

    Thankyou Greens and Labour for doing this.

    Makes me more inclined to donate again.

    • Bearded Git 7.1

      Yes I like the “we need a change of government” joint message.

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.1

        It is a good message. They must be clear on what the replacement govt is going to deliver for the country.

  7. Kiwiri 8


    In an MMP system, I would love also to see the Green-Labour Cabinet reflect, proportionately, the number of Green and Labour ministers.

    Even better if the Deputy Prime Minister (Meteria!) will be Green, and a Deputy Finance Minister who is Green (James Shaw!).

    • billmurray 8.1

      Kiwiri, I agree with you entirely, both Metiria and James must be promised the two positions you have nominated, the Greens must come out of this memorandum with high standings in a future co-alition Greens/ Lab/ NZ First government.
      Work to be done.

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      In an MMP system, I would love also to see the Green-Labour Cabinet reflect, proportionately, the number of Green and Labour ministers.

      And NZ First.

  8. McFlock 9

    Damned good.

  9. Colonial Viper 10

    A good and necessary move which shows that a lot of hard work has gone on behind the scenes.

    Ideally the Greens will drag Labour to the left – and not the other way around.

    • leftie 10.1

      Sometime back, Andrew Little did say that he was in discussions.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 10.2

      “Ideally the Greens will drag Labour to the left – and not the other way around.”

      Hope so. Overall, good to see them working together. Changing the government is just the first step – need to roll back the whole neoliberal nonsense – that will take quite a few years I think. A couple of generations maybe.

      • Colonial Viper 10.2.1

        Labour Greens will have two terms at the most, to make the changes that they want to.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.2.2

        Changing the government is just the first step – need to roll back the whole neoliberal nonsense – that will take quite a few years I think.

        ’84 to ’90 to put it in place. Since then it’s been entrenched but the previous system had been entrenched since the 1930s so it shouldn’t take generations to remove neo-liberalism.

        • UncookedSelachimorpha

          I hope you are right. But while only 84-90 to put in place – has had another 26 years since then to become entrenched in people’s thinking.

          • Draco T Bastard

            Put it this way: Neo-liberalism was imposed against the will of the people after the previous system had been entrenched for around 15 years longer.

            This time, though, it will take a Left-wing party to explain what they’re doing before they do it.

            • Nessalt

              against the will of the people? why have they been voting for the continuation of the status quo ever since? you are badly deluded

              • Draco T Bastard

                against the will of the people?

                Yes. People did not know what they were getting when the 4th Labour government got voted in to power. That’s why there was so many protests about it. They got a second term because people still didn’t trust National from the ’70s.

                Then National got voted in because they pretty much promised to end Labour’s attack on the country but ended up extending it. It’s why their vote collapsed from 1990 to 1993.

                why have they been voting for the continuation of the status quo ever since?

                Because they’ve believed* that they had no fucken choice. It was neo-liberal Labour or neo-liberal National.

                * There were the other new parties but NZers didn’t trust them at all because we seem to be terrified of change.

  10. BM 11

    Since labour’s no longer a major party, I guess it had no other option.

    Not sure if this is a good move or not.

    • Anno1701 11.1

      not sure whether your opinion is of any real validity in this context

    • Puckish Rogue 11.2

      I think this will be good for the bulk of the left wing voters but overall it may make a few of Winstons more conservative voters want to nudge the party to the right in response

      But time will tell I guess

      • Bearded Git 11.2.1

        All bets will be off after the election-if Little wants power and Winston offers it he will dump the Greens whose only option will be to give Lab/NZF the votes to govern.

        Lets hope its Labour 35% Greens 15% and they can rule without Winnie.

        • Puckish Rogue

          That’s…hopeful for Labour but quite doable for the Greens

        • Colonial Viper

          Labour 25% +/-3%

          Labour could cross over 30% on election day but I see the chances of that being very small; I see people disaffected with NATs preferring to vote NZF or GR.

          • red-blooded

            Hey, good luck to the Greens, but let’s remember that all sorts of polls and pundits have predicted them at 15% in the past and they’ve never achieved anything like that. (I seem to remember 11% last time.) Don’t be so quick to write Labour off. They’ve got a much better vibe than they did at the last election.

            • Colonial Viper

              Don’t be so quick to write Labour off. They’ve got a much better vibe than they did at the last election.

              Have you got this feeling from your neighbours and friends?

      • BM 11.2.2

        Won’t harm the greens but I’d be surprised if Labour doesn’t drop.

        Not every one in Labour is enamored with the greens, I’d expect both National and NZ First to rise a few percentage points.

        • Bob

          True, they may lose a bit of their neo-lib support base (which is obviously quite entrenched within the party itself), but it may actually be exactly what Labour needed

      • Rodel 11.2.3

        Ho ho PR. That’s Joyce’s mantra ..trying to divide by using Winston…or are you just continuing to foment your happy mischief?

    • leftie 11.3

      That’s not true BM, after the nats, Labour is the second largest political party.

  11. My remits to my party have been for co-operation with Greens since the 1900s so at last . M really chuffed . No let’s stop squabbling ,lets kick out the so called LP people who spend their time finding fault with anything Labour says and those idiots who try to find fault with our elected leaders .I for one am sick to death of these Tories in Left-wing cloaks . Lets tell them to piss off to their own lot.

  12. Alan 13

    fantastic, lets get Mana and the Internet party too….no …wait……

  13. Rosie 14

    F*cking awesome! I got the MOU in my inbox a few minutes ago and immediately replied with my feedback about how I’d been waiting for this for a very long time and how thrilled I was with this announcement.

    I have always had a lot of respect for the Green Party – so I welcome Greens with open arms.
    It is a strategic move on behalf of the Greens and Labour to work together to defeat this government that is breaking our country in two. It shows the parties mean business and are prepared to put the future of the country before personal political gain.

    Well done to both parties for coming to this agreement shout outs of solidarity to our Green brothers and sisters. 😀

  14. Anne 15

    Two strong performances from Andrew Little and Metiria Turei. Loved the attempt by the likes of Paddy Gower, Tracey Watkins and Andrea Vance to hijack the announcement and make it all about Winston Peters. Suspect Little and Turei saw it coming. 😎

  15. stunned mullet 16

    Winston will be pouring himself a large Gin to celebrate.

  16. Dean Reynolods 17

    Brilliant news! A real chance of a Social Democratic Government in 2017 which can then start restoring NZ’s social & economic deficit. Can’t happen too soon.

  17. nzsage 18

    Does this mean Labour and The Greens will agree on one candidate backed by both psrties in key marginal seats at the next election?

    Now that would be true collaboration and a strong signal they are serious about a chance of government.

    • Bearded Git 18.1


    • I hope so. It would be great to have the Greens endorse all the Labour candidates where Nat MP’s got elected because the left Party vote was split. While it doesn’t change the overall outcome, it does make a difference on the ground in those electorates to have MP’s who care about their constituents.

      The downside is that the Greens are not in a winning position in any electorate, so Labour can’t really return the favour. However, that’s not that big a problem because the Greens function fine as a party vote party. If each party plays to their strengths, we’re on to a winner.

      • Nessalt 18.2.1

        The downside is that the Greens are not in a winning position in any electorate, so Labour can’t really return the favour. ah the smug paternalism of Labour towards the greens. this is the first sign that this MOU is bound to fail.

        How about not standing candidates where green leaders are standing? that’s an immediate way to return the favour that will enhance the mana of both parties.

        • te reo putake

          It’s not smug or paternalist to recognise that no Green candidate appears capable of winning an electorate seat. I voted for Jeanette Fitzsimons when it was clear she had a shot at winning and I’m chuffed to have helped her win Coromandel. But those were different times and there is no electorate where that result seems likely today.

          If you think differently, by all means make the case.

          • Lanthanide

            “If you think differently, by all means make the case.”

            Nessalt already did make the case.

            If you want to vote for a left-wing electorate MP, and there is no Labour candidate standing and instead a Greens one, and Labour and Green have a formal coalition agreement, then are you really going to vote for anyone other than the Green candidate?

            • te reo putake

              Duh. Nessalt did not make the case at all. There was a suggestion in his or her comment that Labour stand aside in two unidentified seats to ‘improve mana’. That’s it.

              That’s actually not going to happen unless there is a real possibility of the Green candidate winning. I don’t see the Fitzsimons situation repeated at present, but if you (or anyone else) does, then make the case.

              (Hint: Wellington Central)

            • Colonial Viper

              To sunmarise: TRP is saying that it may sometimes make good sense for one candidate to step aside to give the other candidate a clear run.

              As long as it is always the Green candidate stepping aside, to give the Labour candidate a clear run.

              • Nope, I’m saying that the candidate has to be in a position to win or there’s no point the other party standing aside. It’s exactly the same for both parties, except, at this point, there doesn’t seem to be a seat where the Greens are even close to winning.

                There are half a dozen seats where Labour can win if they have Green party endorsement. There are no seats where the Greens can win, as far as I can see. If there is, make the case.

                Hint, (again): Wellington Central.

                • Lanthanide

                  “there doesn’t seem to be a seat where the Greens are even close to winning.”

                  If the Labour candidates don’t stand, then the Greens candidates will be much closer to winning, and may be able to win.

                  You’re using a circular argument: Greens aren’t winning, therefore we shouldn’t let them win.

                  • mickysavage

                    I agree with TRP. Name the seats so we can consider this.

                    The Greens have been very good at promoting party vote. They do not get sucked into ego driven campaigns to win electorate seats because this does not help their cause.

                    National and ACT have worked this (MMP) out. The left need to do the same.

                    • weka

                      My understanding is that the Greens campaign in the electorates to increase their party vote. I’m not saying there has to be a quid pro quo, but I am curious how it would work in a co-operative relationship for the Greens to give that up in one or two or three seats.

                    • mickysavage

                      Agreed Weka it is complex!

                      The Greens have had one approach and ACT has had the opposite. The Greens realised they had to win enough party votes so they could maintain their presence. ACT went the opposite way and sold its soul for an electorate vote.

                      The experience suggests that parties are better off standing on their own feet rather than selling their souls …

                      The basic problem with seeking en electorate seat is that unless, a la ACT it is absolutely essential it is a waste of resources. So Greens needing Labour to help them with an electorate seat may not help. Except in the circumstances of 1999 with Coromandel when it helped both parties.

                    • Lanthanide

                      “Name the seats so we can consider this.”

                      Any seat in which Labour + Greens > the current winner of the seat.

                    • Lanthanide

                      Except that eventually to be taken as a serious political party, you need to start also winning electorate seats.

                      I think that’s the difference between a party that polls around 12-13% and a party that polls around 18-19%.

                    • lprent []

                      Having done a lot of electorate level campaigning across multiple electorates, I’d say that you are viewing it completely the wrong way around.

                      Local electorates are won primarily by the local candidates and the level of local support (especially activists) that they can raise. They can and do retain seats despite large swings in the parties that they represent. This is why the major parties in a MMP environment will pile support into any seats that become vacant, because they provide reasonably secure organising bases for supporting the parties, not only in their local electorate, but also in the region.

                      That is why it is very hard for candidates from minor parties to gain electorate seats. Typically that only happens when the configuration between the candidates of the major parties allows a high disaffected vote and vote splitting. Coromandel in 1999 and Northland in 2015 being the recent examples.

                      The Greens don’t have the name recognition that someone like Winston Peters has, nor the populism to get a a good local indignation campaign running as happened in Northland. And it is very rare to get the level of protest voting against the sitting candidate that occurred in in Coromandel in 1996 and 1999 (and which died away in subsequent elections).

                    • Nessalt

                      Reply to your comment below MS, how is winning an electoral seat a waste of resources? do the voters wanting a community voice on the national body not deserve a say in who they want representing them.

                      Pretty poor democracy to be relying on the faceless percentages for victory. sounds pretty capitalist and neo-liberal to me.

                • b waghorn

                  Are there any seats in wealthy suburbs that the green party out polls labour ?. that might be an opportunity to give the greens a clear run at the electorate vote.

              • AB

                As long as this is done in Ohariu I don’t care which party stands down. Removing the bouffant one would be a service to humanity in general.

              • Nessalt

                Pretty much. little brother is good for distracting mum, while big brother steals the cookies as he can reach. Little brother can then have some crumbs.

      • weka 18.2.2

        The Greens campaign on the electorate vote to increase their party vote. They shouldn’t be expected to give that up lightly. It’s not as simple as saying that the Greens can’t win an electorate seat so stand aside, if that drops their party vote.

        Myself, I’d think a valid swap would be putting Kelvin Davis up the list and then standing aside or campaigning lightly in Te Tai Tokerau. That would be a reasonable concession from Labour, right TRP?

        • Lanthanide

          Concession from Labour to whom? This is a MOU between Labour and the Greens, not Labour and some other party.

          • weka

            Sure. I was just pointing to TRP’s theory that the Greens should give up campaigning in electorates to support Labour, even though this will cost them. But that cost would be mitigaged IMOO if Labour did what the Greens did and took a back seat in TTT so that Harawira could be an MP again. We get another left wing party in govt (possibly). I’m just curious to see if TRP would think that Labour giving the concession instead of the GP would be a good idea. He presented his idea as if it was all reasonable when we know that the Greens need those votes and that Labour wouldn’t be so generous with their own either.

            (it doesn’t have to be quid pro quo).

      • Wainwright 18.2.3

        The only electorates where this matters are Epsom and Dunne’s. No need to bother about any of the others, they don’t matter in MMP.

    • Bill 18.3

      Does this mean Labour and The Greens will agree on one candidate backed by…

      No. It means that between now and the election, both Labour and The Greens will really try very hard not to fuck each other up. Like I say below, I just don’t share the enthusiasm for this that some appear to feel, because it should never have been necessary to codify such an arrangement. That the parties felt that need, suggests that the natural relationship isn’t that flash.

      Mind if I point to a comparison?

      Scottish Greens and SNP. No MoU. They disagree where they do and they back one another where they do (eg fracking and tax regimes), and they just don’t seem to fuck one another up or do one another over. The same can quite reasonably be said to hold true for The English/Welsh Greens, SNP and Plaid Cymru or any combination thereof.

  18. Eralc 19

    I predict another party will emerge to offer voters an alternative to the Lab-Greens coalition.

    • Alan 19.1

      Agree, will be environment focussed but not socialist

      • Stuart Munro 19.1.1

        Yup – like the algae, it will be blue green, toxic and unicellular.

        • Redelusion

          Unlike green and red, that makes……..yellow, a good sign for national the mix is unfavourable

          • Dialey

            You obviously don’t know colours. Green and red don’t make yellow – yellow is a primary colour

        • mauī

          Looks like Red above has put up his hand for the new Blue-Greens candidate, he should check with Maggie on how the movement is coming along 😆

      • AB 19.1.2

        Neither labour nor green are ‘socialist’ using any reasonable definition of ‘socialist’.

  19. Keith 20

    A suspiciously united wave of negative comments on Stuff. Co with any supportive comments quickly receiving negative votes. Clearly National are worried by this going by their quick and clumsy reaction!

    • Johan 20.1

      Also, lots of negative comments on NewshubNZ, …of course that is to be expected;-))

  20. r0b 21

    See end of the post for links to donate to the two parties.

  21. Tarquin 22

    Peak KDS?

    • weka 22.1

      Yep, you got it, the sooner the deranged fucker is out the better.

      • Tarquin 22.1.1

        I think you miss my point weka. I want to hear Little get up and say what he wants to do and how he is going to do it. Changing the government is incidental, true vision, belief and a plan are what people want to hear. Only when Labour get that right will they move forward.

  22. tsmithfield 23

    The maths of this says it must lose votes for the left.

    There will be an overlapping subset of Labour and Green voters who will be very happy with the arrangement (quite a lot here obviously).

    However, there will also be a set of voters who like Labour but can’t stand the Greens.
    There will also be a set of voters who love the Greens but can’t stand Labour. Therefore, there logically will be a greater number of left wing voters who either refuse to vote or migrate to NZ First or National.

    • DoublePlusGood 23.1

      I think there far more voters who just couldn’t count on the two parties to work together to make a government. Now though there is clear signalling of working together, and presumably there will be a clear platform. That will attract voters who will see clearly that they can make a government.

      Plus, I don’t think that many of the people who run around complaining about ‘the loony Greens’ are Labour voters.

      • Keith 23.1.1

        True that. For a while there i was thinking The Greens were getting a bit blue!

    • The Lone Haranguer 23.2

      I cant see any situation where a left leaning Labour or Green supporter would get the pricker with his/her party over the agreement to work with the other party, and then go vote for the Nats.

      The world just doesnt orbit like that.

      But they might bugger off to NZF if they saw Winnie as Kingmaker

    • ropata 23.3

      you forgot about the undecided and non voters who want to see a coherent alternative to the Nat Govt.

      also, your tealeaf predictions about lab/green voters are not backed by any stats, so meh.

  23. So which agreement has priority now?

    The similar agreement the Greens made with the National Party in 2009, or the one they made with the Labour Party today?

    [The two matters are entirely different in tone and context, as you well know. Engage your brain before commenting further lest you get the response usually reserved for trolls. TRP]

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 24.1

      Misleading nonsense.

      I read your linked “article” (actually just a link to your own unpleasant blog, not to any external evidence as you might at first think). To me your article seemed the most unreasoned vitriolic garbage. Certainly indicates your perspective on things.

      The 2009 MOU related to three narrow policy areas. Nothing at all in common with the current Labour / Green announcement.

  24. Infused 25

    The right is very happy now too.

    I didn’t think Labour would be so stupid.

    • Anno1701 25.1

      im sure they would be shocked by your incredulity….

    • Johan 25.2

      Troll Alert;-))

    • the pigman 25.3

      Yep, something for you and your Nact staffer mates to do all day – troll public news sites with the same comment repeated 1000 times + downvotes.

      Must make a nice change from fighting the fire raging across your Dickensian, poverty-stricken, homelessness-ridden dystopian ghetto of Planet Key, amirite?

      • Rodel 25.3.1

        Hey pigman
        “Dickensian, poverty-stricken, homelessness-ridden dystopian ghetto of Planet Key, amirite?” ????
        For goodness sake. If you want to communicate something to National party members (Today’s trolls) don’t use such big words. They have very limited intellect and even less language proficiency.

  25. b waghorn 26

    Good on them , would Winston go for a confidence and supply role with a labour green government , ??

    • indiana 26.1

      Only if he gets Deputy Prime Minister…but that might upset the other 2

      • Jenny Kirk 26.1.1

        This puts Winston on the wrong foot.
        If he doesn’t show willing to cooperate in some way, then he’ll lose support because people will have to assume he’s going to support the Nats – and that will lose him some potential voters.

        This is a great move. And shows up a side to Andrew Little that not many are aware of – his ability to negotiate, mediate and bring people together.

        • Colonial Viper

          Winston has won his support by declaring himself for the cross benches. I don’t think he will lose that support by staying consistent with that.

      • b waghorn 26.1.2

        High commissioner to London has a nice ring! I believe there’s a spot coming up there in the near future.

  26. McFlock 27

    the thought occured that we can expect another dead cat from our one-trick prime minister.

    The only really safe industry these days are the cat farms.

  27. I know plenty of working men who vote Labour but who would rather die in a desert from thirst than support the Greens.

    What do you think these guys will do now?

    I’ll tell you.

    They will go vote for Winston.

    • So what? Winston’s already hoovering up thousands of disaffected Tory voters pissed off at the flag debacle. It’s only fair he gets a few votes from the left as well. It’s karma, innit.

      • Redbaiter 28.1.1

        “So what” about your core voters?

        These guys rely on Labour to look after them and here’s Labour getting all warm and cuddly with the people who want to put them out of work.

        And you don’t actually have a lot of votes to chuck away right now you know.

        And for myself, I can’t believe Andrew Little did this without some serious pushing.

        I know there are many in Labour who will go for this, but I’m not sure they’re any kind of real majority. Sure they make a lot of noise, but are they really as numerous as some believe?

        I’m not convinced they are, and I reckon Andrew will regret this move.

        • Colonial Viper

          You noticed how the Labour establishment loyalists throw away their core support base so easily?

          Guess what that ongoing dismissiveness does to the core support of a political party over two or three decades.

          • te reo putake

            Redbaiters imaginary mates aren’t Labour’s core support, CV. For that matter, sad, sour, bitter and twisted bigots aren’t either.

            • Colonial Viper

              Hi TRP, what happened to your hundreds of thousands of Labour affiliated union mates? Oh yeah, Labour 4 dumped on most of them.

              And now they’re gone.

              That’s what I mean by Labour screwing it’s core support.

              • As usual, you haven’t got a clue. The Labour affiliated unions do not represent “hundreds of thousands” of workers. Care to let us know what your history in the union movement is, CV? Or more pertinently, tell us if you’ve ever actually had a real job. You come across as a middle class tosser whose only experience of doing it tough was weekend shifts at maccas during your uni years when you would have rather been out partying. But I maybe wrong*.

                *I’m not wrong.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Firstly, you are wrong much of the time. So that;s the first thing you are wrong about.

                  Secondly, Labour affiliated unions USED TO represent hundreds of thousands of workers.

                  Of course today they represent fewer than 50,000 workers.

                  That was my point. The one you tried to dodge. The Labour right wing happily dismembered its own union support base so that they themselves could take more power in the party.

                  The result is the Labour Party of today.

                  As for my trade union background I am like over 90% of NZers: I do not belong in a trade union.

                  Regarding comfortable financial middle classness. Look in the fucking mirror. See a guy who claims to be a socialist but who favours Hillary Clinton.

                  It really is amusing.

                  only experience of doing it tough was weekend shifts at maccas during your uni years when you would have rather been out partying.

                  You preferred to work instead of partying when you were a young man? Explains a lot.

                  • And according to you, they lost these imaginary hundreds of thousands of workers during the Clark years. Fascinating. You’re a goose, mate.

                    But you’re correct on one matter; you don’t belong in a union. You belong in ACT.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      And according to you, they lost these imaginary hundreds of thousands of workers during the Clark years.

                      My comment above

                      “Hi TRP, what happened to your hundreds of thousands of Labour affiliated union mates? Oh yeah, Labour 4 dumped on most of them.”

                      Hence again, another example of you being wrong. The Helen Clark Government was the fifth Labour Government, not the fourth, which is the one I talked about.

                    • Again you are wrong. The Lange government picked up tens of thousands of blue voters in 84 and 87. In the latter election, the biggest landslide in recent memory, they peaked at nearly half the total vote cast, winning many normally Tory electorates. By 1990, their popularity had dropped dramatically, but that still only put them just behind what had been their ‘normal’ vote during the Muldoon years. In other words, they dropped back to their core vote.

                      Labour still retain that working class core vote, for the most part. That’s one of the reasons turnout in South Auckland is a major determinate in elections. Like it or not, Labour remains the second most popular party, a position it has held for nearly a century, apart from those happy times when it was the outright most popular.

                • KJT

                  “You come across as a middle class tosser whose only experience of doing it tough was weekend shifts at maccas during your uni years when you would have rather been out partying”

                  That is what I thought you were TRP. Maybe I am wrong. Not about the tosser, bit, though!

                  • te reo putake

                    Nope, wrong there too. I’ve got a consistent history of activism and the scars to prove it. That’s part of the reason I have little time for wannabes.

              • KJT

                TRP and Redbaiter are in a fantasy world as usual.

                I work with the people, who used to be Labours core support, every day.

                They no longer vote Labour, since 1984.

                Some voted National last election to keep their super. One of Labours’ stupidest policies..

                Most rather like Peters.

                Some vote Green.

                Labour lost them long ago. The Clark Government got some back, but the caucus bunch of Neo-Liberal clowns, since, lost most of them.

                If they are informed of Green policies about work, Unionism and sustainability, most would prefer Green policies.

                Contrary to popular belief, us “rednecks” are rather worried about our children’s future under both National and Labour.

    • Lanthanide 28.2

      “I know plenty of working men who vote Labour but who would rather die in a desert from thirst than support the Greens.”

      Well they can still vote for Labour, and not support the Greens.

      Unless these people were somehow voting for Labour in the last several elections, but imagined that Labour wouldn’t need to form a coalition with the Greens in order to form a government?

      • weka 28.2.1

        +1 Lanth. There is some seriously unthoughtful thinking going on from the right on this.

    • b waghorn 28.3

      More reason to vote labour as the party with the most seats in a coalition has the most say!

    • Rodel 28.4

      RB-No-one believes you.but nice trolltry.

  28. Stuart Munro 29

    The first coherent move to end this disgusting Key klptocracy. When Cunliffe announced no united front with the Greens pre-election it cost him 6%. Labour are clearly learning some of the lessons of the SNP, Sanders and Corbyn. RWNJ are rightly afraid – this is the coalition that will end them rightly.

    • arkie 29.1

      with an unscrewed pommel?

      • Stuart Munro 29.1.1

        I think the mordstreich used the cross hilt, and the pommel was usually used attached for ‘endings’ – but I’m all for traditions that work.

        • WILD KATIPO

          OOOOH! … otherwise known as the mortuary strike!!! (Anglicized)…it was 1 of the 5 Meisterstrikes
          ( master strikes) taught in German Long sword techniques !

          In the German school of swordsmanship, Mordhau, alternatively Mordstreich or Mordschlag (Ger., lit., “murder-stroke” or “murder-strike” or “murder-blow”), is the technique of holding the sword inverted, with both hands gripping the blade, and hitting the opponent with the pommel or crossguard. This technique allows the swordsman to essentially use the sword as a mace or hammer. The Mordhau is mainly used in armoured combat, although it can be used to surprise an opponent in close quarters. This technique has also been called a “thunder stroke”.

    • Colonial Viper 29.2

      When Cunliffe announced no united front with the Greens pre-election it cost him 6%.

      To be clear – that’s the decision that the right wing and careerist factions of the Labour caucus wanted; Cunliffe was the spokesperson for their decision.

      • Ch-ch Chiquita 29.2.1

        In that case, this tells me that Andrew Little is doing a good job.

        • Jenny

          Maybe Andrew Little is actually listening to his Chief Of Staff.

          Where inside the Cunliffe camp, I have it on good authority, that wherever the tactics were decided for the Cunliffe campaign, they did not involve the COF. Who was often left on the sidelines wondering, “Who on earth made that decision?”

    • Olwyn 29.3

      The first coherent move to end this disgusting Key kleptocracy. I agree. We will know the wind has finally changed as soon as it becomes clear that the MSM no longer see their jobs as dependent on kowtowing to Key.

      • Anne 29.3.1

        We will know the wind has finally changed as soon as it becomes clear that the MSM no longer see their jobs as dependent on kowtowing to Key.

        If the 6pm TV news clips on TV1 and TV3 are any indication, that day has yet to come. Perhaps they are still ‘in shock’. Winston Peters clearly is. 🙂

        • Olwyn

          I think we are slowly getting there, and today’s announcement is a big step on the way. I notice Key’s soothing, “calm down, everything’s actually OK” sound bites are no longer working as well as they used to, and the media is usually quick to pick up on such things.

    • Nessalt 29.4

      Could you please justify your statement that declaring that they won’t work with the greens cost labour 6%?

      I’d say it was cunliffe that cost labour 6%, he was more incoherent that anyone.

      • KJT 29.4.1

        Funny, they went up in the polls actually, until it became obvious that the Neo-Liberal old guard were not going to let Cunliffe swing to the left.

  29. Heather Grimwood 30

    Have been wanting this for years!!!….all that energy diverted to explaining political niceties now freed to achieve the big goal. Really great news.

  30. Reality 31

    Good news. How about those negative ninnies show some positivity and get behind this announcement and support it. Congratulations to the Labour and Green leaders for working together to make this decision.

  31. upnorth 32

    what happens if labour get 20% and greens get 20%

    unions will need to sort out leader. makes winny PM?

    golden rule you have to cunt…no counting has been done

    all the best

    • Colonial Viper 32.1

      what happens if labour get 20% and greens get 20%

      If the Left form a govt it could quite easily look like:

      Labour 26%
      Greens 13%
      NZF 13%

      National 43%

      But I don’t think Winston could politically go with a LAB which came in under 30%.

      • Stuart Munro 32.1.1

        Winnie would make a good PM – but he’d be a better Speaker – it’s the rest of the party that would need to be included somehow – a lot of energy and decent pragmatism there. Greens are more about policy – can wait a term or two for the crown as long as their policy is happening, though as models of a better kind of leadership than the disgusting Key they would be very positive. Labour are showing some strategic sense and ability – there’s a lot of work to be done, we’ll need it.

    • Anno1701 32.2

      ” you have to cunt”

      clutched pearls…..

  32. b waghorn 33

    Anyone with half a brain twigged that labour/greens was a natural partnership years ago!!
    Its been like watching a cheesy sitcom from the nineties where you’re waiting for tha two main character s to sort their shit out and get it together.

  33. Blah, blah, blah, blah, working together, blah ,blah, blah, blah, blah change, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, better future, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

    Wake me up when they start talking about the financial fraud John Key used to stack
    $180 billion in derivatives on our books and raise our debt with more than a $100 billion and how he increased the loans to poor bennies from $40 to $ 417 million in the last five years alone. Until then? Just the other wing of the same bird!

    • Jenny Kirk 34.1

      Where have you been lately, travellerev ?

      Nowhere near any news media outlet obviously – Labour has been talking about the Panama Papers, John Key’s fraudulent friends (and now Andrew Little is facing a defamation case on that), plus their disgust at how WINZ and NZ Housing are treating bennies looking for a home.

      • Colonial Viper 34.1.1

        Panama Paper issues aren’t related to the categories of financial fraud Travellerev noted, which are directly related to the NZ Govt’s accounts.

    • greywarshark 34.2

      Oh cheer up travellerev. Let us children have a song and dance, and go forward in cautious hopefulness. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof, ie don’t overly worry about tomorrow, get on with now and cope with what comes.

  34. Anthony Rimell 35

    I was at a Labour party candidate selection meeting only last night, where this very question came up. It was clear that the people in that room were fully behind just such a proposal as was announced today. It’s not the biggest poll sample, but the core Labour supporters in that room will be really uplifted by the sense and the timing of this announcement.

    Well done Labour: well done Greens! Victory 2017!

  35. Bill 36

    I’m thinking it’s a dog that the press will goad, beat and whip into submission.

    There is nothing in that MoU that shouldn’t have been happening informally and consistently already, and for quite some time, just as a matter of course. That it has come down to the need to draw up some form of documentation to express what should have been a natural state of affairs, hardly bodes well when considering the underlying nature or deeper relationship that the parties have.

    • Lanthanide 36.1

      Sure, but it’s not really the MOU itself that is important here, it’s the *public* expression of co-operation.

      This means, for example, that Labour and the Greens are likely to work on a combined schedule of policies and costings ahead of the next election, and campaign (to some extent) on the basis of the joint platform. One of National’s attacks at the last election is that you’d have no idea what policies would cost and what ones would be implemented if they won.

      • Bill 36.1.1

        They won’t have a combined schedule of policies or whatever. That would be the expectation of a coalition arrangement, and this isn’t a coalition arrangement. All this is (sorry to be so cynical about it) is both parties undertaking to try really, really hard not to monkey wrench and/or trip one another between now and the 2017 election. Shaking my head that they’ve had to put up any kind of framework in order that that might come to pass.

        • Lanthanide

          I just mean that for a few areas (not all), they’ll only announce 1 policy between them. Like they did with NZ power. Another example would be the Greens not announcing their own child support policy, but publicly supporting Labour’s 1st start instead.

          • Bill

            Hmm. I’d be picking that they agree on what’s wrong, coordinate modes of attack or even agree on one mode of attack, but keep their distinct prescriptions and promote those in a way that keeps the focus on government failures and off of one another.

            But that’s where I suspect the goading, whipping and beating from the major news outlets will kick in. They’ll be somewhat determined to get the Greens to be saying anti-Labour stuff and Labour to be saying anti- Green stuff (or to be saying stuff that they can report as anti-Green/ anti-Labour. It’ll be like a game for them.

            • leftie

              Labour and the Greens are well aware of the dirty games the media will try and pull, Little even pointed out that the relationship between Labour and the Greens is strong and comfortable enough to have made this a formal announcement. Turei in her speech, supported that.

              • Bill

                If my cynicism is well founded (it may not be), then there needs to be acknowledgement that being well aware of something and dealing with it effectively are two different things. And following that acknowledgement, some kind of strategy implemented, because as things stand and based on past examples…

  36. weka 37

    Oh fuck off Paddy Gower. The stream link now goes to that little oik being his usual nasty manipulative self. Anyone got a link to the whole press conference?

    • weka 37.1

      [Thanks. Have added this link to the post] – Bill

      • leftie 37.1.1

        Bloody brilliant, loved watching that !! Thanks for the link Weka !! Despite those in the media trying to reframe it, collectively Little and Turei held their own in a united front.

        • weka

          Yes, it’s been a long time coming. Both Little and Turei were great. Really good start for the two parties.

          • leftie

            Agreed, and the timing, 16 or so months out from the next election, is good too.

            • weka

              From what I can tell they will still campaign separately during the election, so this timing looks interesting to me too. A lot they can achieve in that time.

  37. This is good. Very, very good.

  38. Brian 39

    Great news.

  39. adam 40

    Well that just doubled the pool base for Ministers with good skills in the next government.

    Which makes them, 16 times stronger in ministerial stakes than the current government?

  40. Tomas 41

    I really hope that this works out… Spread the word.

  41. Observer Toke 42

    . Why do the Greens have no electorate seats. Just List members ?

    . Why does NZ First have only one seat in Parliament. All the rest are just List Members. ?

    I feel that the three Opposition parties (I include NZ First) must begin to say up front to New Zealanders VOTE for the OPPOSITION. They must say it at every opportunity.


    Get rid of incompetent lazy National.

  42. Golden Teapot 43

    This makes me very happy. It’s the best news I’ve heard in a long time. I hope that nothing goes wrong between now and the election that will damage this commitment.

  43. weka 44

    Things that stand out for me,

    This is hugely symbolic. It’s also historic.

    The MOU looks like how adults behave. It’s also simple, clear, and very easy to communicate.

    #ChangeTheGovt brilliant. Everything is being framed as that, and as presenting Labour and the Greens as the parties for change.

    It also lays it out really clear for NZF, if they want to change the govt then get on board. Turei says in the announcement that they have no problem working with Peters, they’ve done so in the past, and that any issues are old history from ten years ago, everyone has moved on.

    Really good to see they will focus on the 2016 Local Govt Elections.

    The bit about no surprises, including where they disagree, is great. This suggests a good level of committment. It also suggests that Little has been largely successful in his behind the scenes pulling together of the Labour caucus.

    Was that announcment to the Press Gallery? Because they all applauded loudly when the announcement was first made. Is that normal?

    • Whateva next? 44.1

      Aye to that Weka

    • Anne 44.2

      Was that announcment to the Press Gallery? Because they all applauded loudly when the announcement was first made. Is that normal?

      No. It was the Labour and Green MPs present in the front few rows who were applauding. An excellent sign that the accord is going to work imo. The Press Gallery have yet to come to terms with this new arrangement. Their cosy little deal with John Key is in jeopardy… and I doubt they know quite how to react. 🙂

      • weka 44.2.1

        Nice one, thanks Anne.

        I liked Little’s dry joke about how some people take longer than others to read a page (when Gower wouldn’t stfu about NZF).

        • Jenny Kirk

          Yes – its all good news. And will give everyone opposed to the Govt a real lift in morale, and energy to get working together to oust them. Great stuff !

  44. weka 45

    Bless Lynn for having Hooton on a ban at this time 😀

    • Anne 45.1

      Yeah well, a change of government next year would probably spell the end of his cosy little numbers on radio and TV – and with the NBR. No more people bowing and scraping in his august presence… no more publicity and attention. A very worried man. 😀

      Btw, I think it’s permanent ban – hence the puerile reaction.

    • joe90 45.2


      Giovanni Tiso

      @Dovil in all seriousness: because he is never troubled by complex thoughts, or doubt, or a sense of the extent of what he doesn’t know.


    • lprent 45.3

      He seemed to think that having a technical idiot like Whaleoil trying to play $5k to a hacker to break into my personal computers wasn’t a problem.

      The law disagreed with him even if the police did their poodle act for Cameron Slater again (who at police headquarters did give that order and exactly when?).

      If the police hadn’t unilaterally pardoned Cameron despite violating their own guidelines to do so, the court would have almost certainly given him a prison sentence under s311 of the Crimes Act – trying to procure a criminal act.

      Several idiots tried to spin the line that there wasn’t a crime. So I displayed the same arbitrary behaviour as the police. I banned them permanently with no chance of amnesty.

      Both of them are still whining hurt and anger about it, one on twitter, and the other on his blog. Now perhaps they understand the issue.

  45. Don't worry. Be happy 46

    So where is the Maori Party in all of this?

  46. Reality 47

    Claire Trevett has been quick to suck a bag of lemons over the MOU. Talk about sour, one-eyed and unbalanced.

    • weka 47.1

      doublelolz, I saw that. She ends with saying Key will be the only one pleased by the announcement.

      • Whateva next? 47.1.1

        Methinks she do protest too quickly, always ready to hit the button the minute Andrew draws breath, almost as if she has a template ready and waiting…?

        • Ffloyd

          Whatevanext. I have thought for some time that she has a ready to go template. She’s pretty quick! Note that there is no place for comments. Poor old Trevor, I’m starting to feel a little bit sorry for her. As well as a lot embarrassed. Hope she gets a pull on her ponytail for her efforts.

  47. Keith 48

    The Heralds Nat girl, Claire Trevett has put the boot in already, no time to think it over, just a spray of hatred toward anyone not supporting National. Her opinion could have been written for John Key!

    I expect Hosking, Henry, Williams etc to slag this off as well. National could until today give the false impression that they too could go with the Greens but not now. And they cannot play divide and rule so much either. The shrill reaction is interesting!

    • Craig H 48.1

      Williams and Garner were both ripping into it on talkback as I drove home…

  48. Grantoc 49

    The MoU doesn’t seem all its cracked up to be in that it appears only to formalise what is presently happening between Labour and the Greens. I also understands that it lasts only until the election itself when all bets are off.

    The agreement is likely to appeal to liberal left labour and green voters where the shared focus is on social and economic justice policies. There is a risk of some disengagement from other categories of core voters as has been suggested e.g. traditional blue collar voters; traditional ‘green’ voters.

    At the level of voter perception there is also a risk to Labour in that it is seen as moving to the left – this potentially undermines Little’s narrative currently being directed at middle NZ, which by definition sits in the middle of the political spectrum and is wary of the left.

    There is also the reality based on one of the dominant patterns emerging from the polls, which is that NZ First will hold the balance of power. I cannot imagine NZ First playing third fiddle in this orchestra. If this voting pattern holds true a whole lot of political eggs will need to be broken if NZ First is to join in a coalition with Labour and the Greens. No one can tell yet, but this arrangement would seem to push NZ First towards the cross benches or towards National.

    Interesting times.

    • weka 49.1

      ‘Middle NZ’ is a rhetorical device. Let’s not confuse it with centrist voters or even swing ones. Middle NZ isn’t an actual thing though.

      The centre used to be much more to the left of where it is now. I can’t see any reason why it can’t shift back there especially given how defunct neoliberalism has turned out to be.

      My own theory (which I learnt from Lprent) is that many voters want competency in a govt and will choose that over and above party loyalty or even policy. Labour/Green are presenting both competency and a change from what we have now. NZ doesn’t generally do 4 term govts, so this works on several levels. Time to give the opposition a go, and time for National to be ousted for those that think they have gone too far or bungled it.

      • Jenny Kirk 49.1.1

        + 100% weka

      • Colonial Viper 49.1.2

        The centre used to be much more to the left of where it is now. I can’t see any reason why it can’t shift back there

        It’s called fear of increased mortgage interest rates, fear of increased taxation, fear of radical change and fear of economic inexperience.

        • weka

          Sure, but those are fears that stop it from happening not reasons why it can’t happen. We’ve had the centre further left than now and the country wasn’t damaged by that.

          • Pat

            that was almost two generations ago and like most history (even recent) it is recorded by the victors, in this case the neolibs….you only have to read some comments on here to understand that even the recent past is little understood by those who weren’t there….mainstream it is even worse

            Equally it would be wrong to suggest that all was wonderful pre neoliberalism as that was quite clearly not the case and change was needed….unfortunately we bought the wrong pup.

  49. b waghorn 50

    “Her opinion could have been written for John Key!”

    Her opinion was probably written by john key


  50. Jenny 51

    According to the current poll numbers Labour and the Greens still don’t have the numbers to govern.

    They need the support of New Zealand First, and Winston Peters*


    Climate change is more and more becoming the defining issue of our age delineating where on the political spectrum political parties lie.

    Unfortunately the government can’t be changed while the Labour Party which is still the biggest ‘Left’ Party supports business as usual in regards to the climate and refuses to challenge the National Government over their support for deep sea oil, New Coal mines, more motorways and other climate destroying policies

    The Labour and the Green Party efforts to court New Zealand First will be fruitless, until Labour can agree to challenging New Zealand First on where they stand on deep sea oil drilling, or new coal mines, fracking. If NZ First were forced to declare themselves one way or the other on these issues, it would show which political party NZF would go with after the election.

    Deep sea oil drilling is a hot topic in Northland

    The Northland seat, long held by National, is now a marginal seat held by Peters

    Not being challenged over climate change virtually guarantees that NZ First will go with National.

    *(Winston Peters is the climate change spokesperson for the New Zealand First Party.

    • Colonial Viper 51.1

      Labour supports deep sea oil drilling and coal mining.

      In this, they have more in common with NZF than with the Greens.

      BTW one reason that Labour cannot acknowledge the true crisis of climate change and fossil fuel depletion, is that they would have to recognise that our current economic arrangements cannot, must not, continue.

      • Jenny 51.1.1

        The thing about NZF is that it is all things to all people. Inside NZF there is every sort of political view, many often at odds with each other. And Winston allows and possibly encourages this anarchy, because it gives him the right to have the final say. Also because it has no consistent line on anything NZF also acts as the repository for the disaffected from both of the main political parties.

        NZF is a personality cult with zero internal democracy, Winston Peters is the final arbiter of everything.
        This is not a pejorative judgement, just a statement of fact.

        NZF is Winston Peters.

        Though he runs his party like an autocrat most of the time it is a benign dictatorship.

        Winston Peters has been called a “populist” what does that mean?

        It means that he has been able to extract some truely progressive legislative concessions from the major parties. The most notable of these to date being the ‘Gold Card’ extracted from National in return for his coalition support.

        What will Winston Peters seek to extract this time?

        My money is on the deputy Prime MInister’s seat.

        Other than that, some ‘populist’ immigrant bashing legislation, should keep his rump supporters happy.
        So how should the Left deal with Winston Peters. Winston Peters/New Zealand First needs to keep being hammered on policy, to try and reveal where they stand.

        Most of the major portfolios are held by Winston Peters himself one of them is climate change.

        Climate change is one of the government’s worst performing portfolios. And it is my opinion that it is around climate change issues that Winston Peters could be separated away from the government.

        At the last election Winston Peters was asked whether he believed in human induced climate change.

        And he replied, “You would have to be a fool not to” this is contrast to the government’s ambivalent and reluctant position.

        As well as this, Peters is vulnerable to issues around deep sea oil drilling in Northland. If Peters could be drawn on this issue as well, it could be another wedge between him and the government who are in deep with the oil companies.

        • tas

          Winston First goes whichever way the wind blows. Unless your goal is to stick it to both sides of the house, you can’t really trust Peters to deliver.

  51. Rodel 52

    I’m pleased…. very pleased.
    Congratulations to the leaders of Labour and Greens.

    Also nice to see the gender mix of Labour-Greens leaders (2 men, 2 women) instead of the Key/Joyce/ English male triumvirate.

  52. mauī 53

    Political hit jobs by media hacks ensue. This one from Watto headlined: Labour’s commitment issues
    This sort of shit has to do about 10% of damage in the polls

  53. Whateva next? 54

    Not sure what Winston is on about….”rigged arrangements behind people’s backs” did he not see the news tonight, broadcast to the whole nation, hardly “behind people’s backs”

    • Pat 54.1

      think if you suggested to Winston he was referring to the Labour/Greens MOU you would be given a very short shrift

      • Jenny 54.1.1

        Talking of dealing behind the people’s backs. Winston Peters is the expert. Never letting on, even to his own party, let alone the public who he will do a deal with. Until it is done.

        But of course in the Peters universe, making a public statement about wanting to change the government and working with others who want the same thing is working behind the people’s backs.

        WOW! The illogic is staggering.

        • Pat

          as it appears i was wrong in ay case….Winston has indeed attacked the MoU…but then he’s seeking to increase th NZFirst vote so is understandable…but I was working on the theoryWinston is the master of the ambiguous statement that he subsequently berates the media for “misinterepting”

  54. Pat 55

    Think this is an intelligent and well timed move…….even if you believe the motives may have been cynical by one or both parties it has the effect of creating a sense of urgency and links the goal…..now all they need to do is avoid the minefield that will be laid for them.

  55. Tanz 56

    I am going to cancel my membership and support, I can’t believe Labour could be so daft.
    The Greens are hard left lunatics who won’t to kill jobs, commerce and common sense. Well done. John Key has won next year by default, and so has Winston.
    so much for the middle ground, huh.

    • Pat 56.1

      Winston may do well out of this but very much doubt Key will

    • Colonial Viper 56.2

      Uh, the Greens are the political party which most understands that fossil fueled civilisation is coming to an end. But you disagree?

    • Stuart Munro 56.3

      It’s much worse than that Tanz – many of the Greens are cereal killers! Be afraid! Be very afraid!

    • Keith 56.4

      “Hard left lunatics”, straight from the hymn book of National and their cronies.

    • Whateva next? 56.5

      See ya Tanzania, good luck with winston and the rwnj

    • tangled_up 56.6

      What’s actually changed in terms of changing the Government? For Labour to be in Government it was always going to mean that the Greens would be going with them.

    • framu 56.7

      “The Greens are hard left lunatics who won’t to kill jobs, commerce and common sense”

      that explains why many of them own businesses then doesnt it

    • lprent 56.8

      I am going to cancel my membership and support,

      Hi Tanz. I had never picked you as being a Labour supporter, let alone a member. I’d have expected you to be a supporter of the Conservatives. Since I have killed several of these kinds of messages from first time commenters since this news broke, I’d expect that this a line being run from the right. I don’t think it is going to fly amongst the Green or Labour supporters or even the floaters. It might have 6 years ago. But that is a long time in politics.

      I suspect that a more subtle approach would have been that of David Farrar with some rather hilarious wedge tactics about commitments to ministerial seats. But that obviously has a few problems.

      I hadn’t noticed that the Nats ever announcing or even telling their support parties what ministerial seats they are getting prior to an election.

      But that is Farrar – always holding the Labour and the Greens to a far higher moral standard than either he or National can either attain or even wish to.

      • Tanz 56.8.1

        I have been a supporter for ages, but a supporter who thought that Labour had sensibly gone right, especially under Cunliffe. Most of NZ voters are middle of the road, yet Labour has just lurched to the hard left. Where God doesn’t exist and Marxism reigns supreme. Karl Marx was simply a man with ideas that have long since been debunked and proved wrong, yet the hard left clings to them for dear life. Example – forty years ago under a Conservative worldview the west was far better off, jobs for everyone, very little crime and violence, fair housing prices, lots of state houses and common sense government. Do you really think that the mess of the west today works under socialist ideas and rule?

        • Anne

          Oh dear Tanz you really do need some sorting. Cunliffe was part of the Labour-left faction not the right. Labour has never been “hard left” – that’s a figment of the Nat. Party propaganda machine you have fallen for. How do you know your God hated Marxists? And anyway, Labour has never followed the Communist doctrine. That is also a figment of Nat/Tory propaganda you have been hoodwinked into believing. Forty years ago we were enjoying the benefits of the Labour government’s foresight and their decision to build state houses, introduce fair social policies and make sure all children received a well rounded education. Conservative governments of the day both here and overseas fought against such policies but fortunately for all of us they failed.

          In short, you’ve got everything the wrong war round. Whether that is a result of ignorance or poor cognitive ability I don’t know.

          • Tanz

            yes, we are sliding into utter chaos under progessiveness and socialism.
            This is why Trump is doing so well, middle America has been ignored and snubbed by their rulers for decades, as has middle NZ. You can snort with glee, but remind me, how long have the left of NZ now sat in opposition?
            The voters are fed up, the people are fed up, Mike Hosking can avow to that.

            • leftie

              So what? The Nats sat in opposition for 9 years when Labour were in power Tanz. That’s politics and NZ politics is largely cyclic.

        • leftie

          You are no Labour supporter Tanz. Stop telling porkies. You are full of it.

  56. Tanz 57

    yes, I disagree. Greens worship the creation, not the creator. And Labour has just abandoned middle NZ, as well as its working class. Key will win hugely out of this, he may well govern alone.

    • Jenny 57.1

      “The Greens are hard left lunatics who won’t to kill jobs,….”

      And, They are Atheists! (and probably grammar nazis too)

      Run for the hills Tanz before they try to take your guns away.

      • Tanz 57.1.1

        I don’t own any guns and excel in English, thanks Jenny. One of my best subjects. Scoff all you want. Next election when Key wins a very easy non MMP-like victory, you all may well be lamenting this crazy decision. Also, going by the comments in the Herald, a lot of middle class Labour supporters are far from happy. Next year has just become a shoe-in for National and Key.

        • leftie

          Real Labour supporters wouldn’t think this decision crazy or “lament” it, they would be happy about it. Just shows those on the Herald are liars and pretenders.

          Despite abusing his position of power to cling to office over the last 2 elections, what makes you think dirty John can get away with rigging another election Tanz? It is MMP, there is nothing “non” about it, after 3 elections John Key still couldn’t govern alone.

        • Robert Guyton

          “I…excel in English..”
          “Next year has become a shoe-in for National and Key”.

          Tanz, you’re a wee beauty!

          • Chooky

            “Tanz, you’re a wee beauty!”…like miss piggy telling porkies

        • Rodel

          From Tanz…” going by the comments in the Herald, a lot of middle class Labour supporters are far from happy.
          “Who would ever ‘go by ‘ comments in the Herald -or for that matter- ‘Trump, God, Marx, Hosking..wow! now that’s an impressive lineup!

        • Jenny

          Tanz, I don’t usually correct people’s grammar.* (God knows, mine’s bad enough).

          But in this case I think Tanz, that it may be an indication that you might be overlooking some other things too.

          Though you don’t explicitly say it, (in fact you ignore any mention of it), I take it that you are a climate change denier.

          Am I wrong?

          *(It’s “shoo in”)

          If you are unsure of things look it up. It’s what I do.


    • ropata 57.2

      Didn’t God put us on Earth to look after the place, not trash it? That’s called stewardship not nature worship. Also, freedom of religion?

      • Tanz 57.2.1

        some call it tree-hugging and the worship of nature over humans, at the life and cost of humans. Sure, freedom of religion, nature worship is a religion!

        • ropata

          if you truly value human life as you claim, why not vote for a party that cares about the future of humanity and the planet.

          people mostly reject Green values because of Greed not holy writ.

          God loves trees too ya know. Looking after a garden is a sacred duty, since time began.


    • leftie 57.3

      What a load of rubbish Tanz.

    • Hanswurst 57.4

      Christ, what a load of steaming bloody nonsense. Anyone who bases their policy on worship of any kind should be kept well away from the government benches.

  57. leftie 58

    Interestingly, last week on The Daily Blog’s awesome current affairs program, Labour’s Phil Twyford and the Green’s Julie Anne Genter appeared together on the show. It was a sign of good things to come.

  58. tas 59

    I don’t think this is as big a deal as people make it out to be. It’s really just formalising the status quo.

    I doubt the polls will move at all, but maybe the media will start reporting the combined Labour+Green total (as they should already be doing).

    It’s possible that more people will start to party vote Green and electorate vote Labour. We could see a Labour overhang in the next parliament, which means the Labour+Green block could get a disproportionate share of the seats, which would be very interesting.

  59. The Chairman 60

    A number of voters want an assurance a left coalition can work together once in power. The agreement to work together ends on election day. Thus, there is no assurance.

    And, unfortunately for the Greens, Little wouldn’t rule out cutting the Greens out of any coalition post-election.

    The concern for the left is the MoU will lead to the Greens making concessions, moving them more into the centre.

    It will be interesting to see what eventuates.

    • Draco T Bastard 60.1

      And, unfortunately for the Greens, Little wouldn’t rule out cutting the Greens out of any coalition post-election.

      That would actually be wrong:

      It is our intent to build on this agreement so as to to offer New Zealanders the basis of a stable, credible and progressive alternative government at the 2017 General Election.

      That pretty much says that they’ll be going into government together.

      • The Chairman 60.1.1

        “That would actually be wrong”

        No. Pretty much is no assurance.

        Moreover, it’s pretty much what voters expected without the MoU.

        Up and coming polls will give us an indication of the impact of this new MoU.

  60. Gavin 61

    This is great news, brought a tear to my eye, as It’s by far the smartest thing Labour and the Greens could do at this stage of the runup to the 2017 election. We both want National out, badly. The people in these parties know the figures, have been reading the real story behind the Nats rhetoric, they are appalled with the current direction NZ is taking.

    Now the public have time to absorb the new coalition in waiting, they’ll vote for it, given we jointly have all the best policies, and no-one in either party should back away from a united front. Already in our electorate, emails are flying around between Labour and the Greens, there is collaboration in local body politics too.

    This initiative will mobilise a lot more funding and effort from electorates that have been steamrolled by the National party juggernaut in the past, installing, and keeping installed, their generally crap National MPs. We’ll be booting a few of them out, this time.

    Three terms in, three terms out, it’s time for a change in 2017.

    • Jenny 61.1

      Strategy and tactics.

      Tactics alone won’t win the battle. And make no mistake about it, this is a tactical feint, to head off National and its coalition partners.

      But on its own, it won’t be enough

      Not until the Greens and Labour can agree on a combined strategy, will they have any chance of preventing a Fourth National led ACT/NZF/MP coalition. Labour and Green combined, just don’t have the numbers.

      Tactical feints and sidesteps won’t win the war of ideas.

      If Labour and the Greens both wish to shift the national debate towards the Left, forming a strategic alliance will have to be the next step.

      First and foremost the Greens are an environmental Party, for Labour to share a combined strategy with the Greens means that Labour will have to start taking environmental strategy more seriously.

      The most pressing environmental issue of the moment,* (if not all time) is climate change. Until the Labour party can start addressing their support for deep sea oil and coal mines over renewables and motorways over public transport. Then a combined strategy with the Greens will always be problematic.

      Delivering a pre-budget speech only days before this announcement, that did not have one mention of the climate crisis, or the need to address it. Was not a good start.

      Maybe now that this MoU has been signed this will change. And Labour will start taking this issue seriously. I will look forward to Andrew Little’s speech on this subject.

      Labour’s Ten Big Ideas

      Number 11 ………………

      [fill in the blanks]


      • Gavin 61.1.1

        I quite agree with you Jenny, climate change is for sure, the biggest problem the world has ahead. Too much of a temperature change, and every country will be fending for itself. We’ve not left ourselves in too good a position to do that tidily.

        One thing that Labour policies would do is encourage SMEs in the regions, where new manufacturing jobs and cheaper homes can match up with existing infrastructure that is underutilised. I think a lot can still be done with the state housing estate, instead of selling it off.

        A lot of the Labour activists are researching climate change, are worried about it, want to see policies that reflect that. If you look on the Labour website, they have a good policy structure already.

        Most of us are ready for a strategic alliance between the Greens and Labour, let’s see how the MoU goes.

        • Jenny

          Thank you Gavin for your words of support. It is good to hear news that a lot of Labour activists are researching climate change, are worried about it, want to see policies that reflect that.

          Hopefully, we will soon be able to see this concern manifest itself in Labour’s public policy statements and releases.

          (Maybe even a joint policy statement with the Greens)

          So far it has been quite discouraging that Labour’s Ten Big Ideas and Andrew Little’s pre-budget speech have given zero mention of climate change.

          It would be great to see at least one great policy speech on Climate Change from the Leader of the Opposition before the election.

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