Partners by choice better than necessity

Prime Minister John Key has made his preferences for coalition partners clear.

He also stresses the importance of the party vote:

. . . “First and foremost, National will be campaigning hard for every party vote it can win, because that puts us in the best position to continue the positive policy direction New Zealand is on.

“Put simply, the higher National’s party vote, the more options we have. . .

National didn’t need to invite the Maori Party into coalition in 2008, it chose to do so.

A higher party vote gives more options for a major party because it would be able to approach potential coalition parties by choice rather than through necessity.

It was difficult to win an outright majority under first past the post, no party has managed it under MMP.

The PM’s first preference for coalition partners is those he has worked with successfully already – Act, the Maori Party and United Future.

“I know that post the 2014 election, National will almost certainly need to work constructively with other political parties to form a stable Government.

“Since November 2008, we have shown that we can lead a stable Government with other political parties involved, even when those parties have different outlooks and policies.

“Looking ahead, it is most likely that the nature of these working relationships will be via Confidence and Supply Agreements, as these have worked well in the past two Parliamentary terms.

“In the end it is the public who largely determine the make-up of the Government by voting in parties to Parliament,” says Mr Key.

Mr Key says that given the right electoral circumstances, his preference would be to continue working with the current three partners to the Government, which are ACT, the Māori Party and United Future. . .

By making this clear voters have a better idea of what they might be getting.

“I believe there is also a scenario where it would be possible to add the Conservative Party to this group.

“While National has of course had differences with ACT, the Māori Party and United Future, together our four parties have formed a stable and successful Government since late 2008,” Mr Key says.

“We also have policy differences with the Conservative Party, however it is likely that there would be enough common ground to work with them in Government.”

Voters also know what they won’t be getting if National is able to form a government:

In terms of other parliamentary parties, Mr Key ruled out working with Labour, the Greens and Mana on the basis that there is insufficient common ground to achieve a stable and successful working relationship.

“These parties represent a far left wing agenda that we do not believe is good for New Zealand,” says Mr Key.

Labour is a bit confused about how left it is, not helped by a leader who sways further left with some audiences than with others.

With regard to New Zealand First, Mr Key said that he believed a post-election working relationship was very unlikely; however he would not rule the possibility out ahead of the election.

“In 2008 we ruled them out because we were unable to reconcile some of their statements on the Glenn donation matter. Six years has passed and, should New Zealand First be returned to Parliament, we would not rule out a discussion after the election.”

This has excited the media but it is clear New Zealand First would be a last resort.

Whether or not National is in a position to form a government and which parties it will need, or be able to choose, to invite into coalition is up to voters who now know which parties are preferred, which could be considered and which would be ruled out.

The more votes National has, the more options it has and the the more stable the government will be.

On current polling it would certainly be a lot more stable than a Labour/Green government with other parties in tow through necessity and therefore able to exert a much stronger influence than if they were in government by the bigger party’s choice.

27 Responses to Partners by choice better than necessity

  1. robertguyton says:

    A right-wing Nat-led 6-headed hydra would be more stable than a left-wing 2-party coalition?


    Key, “Smack’em-up Colin, Disgraced Dunne, Te Ururoa, Mr Lamington and Wily Winston stable

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

    Righty-o then.


  2. Paranormal says:

    But lets face it RG – your dreamed of hard left two party coalition is just not going to happen at the next election. For that to happen you will need popular support. That means actually getting punters to vote for you.


  3. Gravedodger says:

    Psst Robert your slip is showing.

    Key leads a centrist coalition and has support from more votes than needed hence a very stable coalition.

    Your dream, as that is all it is so far, is a total vote that on current polling might give a razor thin plurality.

    You really need to update the perception guage on your psyche also, as current Labour and GP policy is considered far left as in marxist theory.


  4. Andrei says:

    Perhaps not if those who support the “right” stay home in utter disgust.

    Perhaps National needs time out on the opposition benches to reflect upon the fact that we are citizens if a free country (supposedly) and not subjects of a self appointed elite, who think they know better whats good for us than we do.

    National has become arrogant and has spent the last two terms coming up with new ways to wrap adult human beings in cotton wool and finding new ways to raid our wallets.


  5. Paranormal says:

    True Andrei, especially with the Nats continuing their Liabour light policy settings with a little marginal reform here and there (eg. social welfare) to appear to be doing something.

    A more likely scenario is next election is the lowest turnout ever due to both left and right voters staying home. There’s just nothing to excite them enough to bring them to the polling booths from either left or right. End result – Key/Nats led government due to comfortable economic times and no real inspiration to change.


  6. Richard says:

    Agree GD


  7. TraceyS says:

    I am not a smacker myself, but do quite like Colin Craig. I wouldn’t wish to tell him how to raise his kids. He doesn’t wish to tell me how to raise mine. That feels pretty comfortable to me.


  8. robertguyton says:

    “I am not a smacker myself…” but I support one and further more, one who seeks to promote smacking and over-turn legislation that the nice Mr Key oversaw and supported, removing protections for children from assault.
    Tracey, your position is convoluted to say the least.


  9. jabba says:

    Peters gives me the shits .. what a waste of tax payers money he and his band are.
    The fact that Winston1st could be king maker again is a slight on NZ politics BUT the alternative is far worse


  10. robertguyton says:

    “A more likely scenario is next election is the lowest turnout ever due to both left and right voters staying home.”

    So why is Key bothering to make such an issue of the importance of his supporters getting out and voting, Paranormal? If your political instincts are right, Key’s are wrong.
    I wouldn’t be putting any money on your prediction.


  11. robertguyton says:

    How is your desire for a National/Act/Conservative/UnitedFuture/Maori/New Zealand First Government any less a dream than my Labour/Green/Mana preference, GraveDodger?
    Colin Craig’s involvement is what’s going to cause soft-Nat voters to stay at home – they’re very wary of the ‘don’t discount any mad theory’ guy (man not on the moon, anyone? Chemtrails? This is looney-tunes stuff, as Key would say, but of course, now they’re mates. Winston won’t like that. If Colin and Winney are demanding the Deputy Prime Ministership, guess who’ll get it? Not Col!)
    A coalition of whack-os. John Banks, believing the world was created inside of a week was crazy enough. You guys are backing the barking!


  12. robertguyton says:

    Winston’s eye is on the prize and now that Key’s hand has slipped into his, he’ll be beaming. First day in the House should be a love-fest.


  13. TraceyS says:

    Colin Craig is a fresh face in politics. That is what’s needed to get people interested.

    So many people are tuned out. There needs to be politicians who will get them tuning back in again…or maybe for the first time ever.


  14. TraceyS says:

    This whole “Winston” thing is just so tired…and old (yawn).


  15. robertguyton says:

    Colin Craig – the short, sharp smack of politics, just what we need…
    Winston’s tired alright, but has just had a fresh dose of adrenalin from Mr Key so should be good for another 3 years at least.
    (Don’t take it too seriously, Tracey, we’re just ragging each other and it’s of no account. I’m off for another holiday from the Homepaddock now, so peace will return and the air turn blue again.)


  16. TraceyS says:

    Peace in my air is not having others press their “superior” ideals onto me, my family, or others around me.

    The so-called “smacking law” changes didn’t do this because they were already my ideals. Further change to the legislation is very unlikely to force me (or anyone) to adopt the values of others. This is because we can all choose our actions – it’s so obvious I shouldn’t even have to state it – law changes that say you can give your child a light disciplinary smack won’t mean that you now HAVE to!

    Those who seek to press their ideals upon others will not appreciate that people can still support each other while holding value sets which don’t align perfectly. I don’t know how such people get by in the world. Narrowly, I suspect.

    I would vote for the coalition promising the fewest new examples of “you must…”. The conservatives are not saying you must smack your children.

    What will the Labour and Green parties be saying? You must….join an industry-standard agreement……you must…..cut down on your fossil fuel use……you must……


  17. Andrei says:

    “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

    – CS Lewis


  18. jabba says:

    as in the past, if it turns out Labour can take on Winny1st instead of the Gweens, they will and who would blame them?


  19. TraceyS says:

    I do agree with you, from previous comments Andrei, that some sectors of the community are “tormented” more than others. As a little girl I saw that and decided not to be among them. That meant growing up obeying the rules, laws, conventions, etc, even if in disagreement with them.

    In life circumstances where it is difficult to achieve (and I mean anything at all), “petty” laws are actually really important, because compliance with them IS generally achievable – and is a source of self-worth where there is none other. Compliance with petty (but real and consequential) laws may be the only thing that delivers a sense of achievement culminating, eventually and where sustained, in an escape from circumstances which could be much better.

    I know it’s not like that for everyone and it applies more to young people. Sadly, only too often that sense of achievement (gained from being ‘good’ at least in the eyes of the law) is dashed when it isn’t followed up by higher-order opportunities – such as a job or further educational opportunity. Then it’s hard to overcome and people end up stuck and endlessly subjected to what you call tyrannies.

    I could write a list of kids names right now who have just done well in exams and have great futures ahead of them and out of their very less than ideal pasts. Whether they end up being subject, as many of their parents are, to the petty tyrannies of WINZ or the Police etc, depends largely on the momentum of self-achievement being sustained for several more years, at least until they’re out of the teenage years.


  20. Gravedodger says:

    Robert could you give us a link as to where John Key said he would go into a coalition with Winston Peters please.
    All I have heard or read is he may talk to NZ First and with Andrew Williams, Barbara Stewart, Dennis O’Rourke and Tracy Martin available, on the understanding that many if not most of the voters giving their support to National, in the knowledge that Cunliffe and Norman would be a disaster economically would want him to talk to NZ First as a minimum obligation.
    Mr Key’s adlib at the end of the substantive made sense to me.
    However having to understand the convoluted mutterings of Hadfield, Cunliffe, and Co I can totally understand the difficulty you might have with comprehending what the Prime Minister was really saying.


  21. TraceyS says:

    Who is this serial down-voter? What’s not to like?


  22. TraceyS says:

    Oh I am crying in my wine!


  23. Andrei says:

    “petty” laws are actually really important, because compliance with them IS generally achievable – and is a source of self-worth where there is none other.

    Is that so Tracey? – It seems that female labour MPS don’t think the obeying laws and protocols of the Powhiri are a source of self-worth to them and that it is right and correct to violate them, a position our gracious blog hostess supports.

    And indeed they were violated again today presumably with some New Zealnd Government official’s deliberate and purposeful intent – and this has received ecstatic and orgasmic coverage throughout the media.


  24. TraceyS says:

    “And indeed they were violated again today…”

    What was that Andrei? I must have missed it.

    Re female labour MPs I don’t really give a …. It’s a privilege to be part of another’s culture…you have to act the part. Would think MP’s would understand that. We are all actors in one way or another. Little children learn by acting and adults can learn that way too when confronted with something new and unfamiliar. Language, in particular, can be picked up quickly through imitation. Thought processes can hinder the learning.


  25. Andrei says:

    It’s a privilege to be part of another’s culture…you have to act the part.

    Indeed Tracey, its called etiquette, or good manners.

    And therein lies the difference between the rules of the Marae, the Church for that matter unlike the Government thay cannot use to full force of the law to force compliance.

    I’m a Christian man of course and it always amuses me when people knock the Church for its rules, the ones with which they disagree – not getting that the Church actually doesn’t forbid anything, it teaches that you have free will to make your own choices but the choices you make will not be consequence free and that the price for bad choices might be high, very high indeed your soul could be lost,

    On the other hand the Government can compel compliance with its laws, even using guns and violence if necessary to force its will on the unwilling.

    Which is not a problem if the laws being enforced are widely agreed upon, easily understandable and serve a purpose that is readily understood but is a big problem if the laws are capricious, serve the interests of a particular group to the detriment of other groups, or are used to enforce the values of one sector of society upon another that doesn’t share them.


  26. Paranormal says:

    It’s there in plain sight if you wish to see. Looks to me like Key sees what I see and is starting now to try and motivate his voters to come out. If he is able to overcome the apathy of his potential voters more than the lefts then he is a shoe in.


  27. Paranormal says:

    It’s quite clear what Tracey’s position is – and it’s similar to mine. I’m not going to tell you how to raise your kids – don’t try and tell me how to raise mine.


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