Greens and Labour and a big announcement and no one cared

Screen Shot 2016-05-31 at 8.17.49 PM

You know the budget must have been well received by voters when just two sitting days after it has been delivered the opposition have stopped attacking and launched a weapon of mass distraction.

Labour and the Greens have announced a formal pact to work together to change the Government.

“Labour and the Greens have reached agreement, common ground,” Labour leader Andrew Little said at a joint press conference on Tuesday.

In a public sign of the deal he will be the keynote speaker at the Green’s annual conference on Saturday.

That is seen as a symbolic reminder of Helen Clark’s speech at the Alliance conference before the 1999 election that buried the hatchet between the former rivals.

Little said it’s time for a change and the parties intended to build a stable credible and progressive alternative to National.

I think he missed the mark on the credible part.

Green co-leader Metiria Turei said the Memorandum of Understanding [MOU] between the two parties would provide “crystal clear clarity” that was lacking in the last two elections about an alternative government.

The MOU included an agreement to co-operate in Parliament and investigate a joint policy and/or campaign.

Little said Grant Robertson would be finance minister in a Labour-Green government but no other discussions had been held over other roles.

Turei said the shape of a Cabinet would come much further down the track, after the election.

The wording of the MOU implies it will run only until the election and it is not being presented as a coalition deal.

Asked about NZ First’s role Little said: “We both agree this is not a monogamous relationship.”

So they can shag about…good to know.

What Labour and the Greens have done is three-fold.

Firstly they have told the hard-left that they should vote Green. Then they’ve told the centre-left to vote for National. And for those who can’t do that they can vote for Winston Peters.

The upshot is that Labour is now a minor party attempting to join forces with another minor party to declare victory.

It seems they are still playing Kiwi cricket with the spastics.

The Greens are toxic and National are grinning from ear to ear because there is no longer any doubt. If you vote for Labour you get the Greens.

Just looking at that photo above it reminded me of another strange looking couple.



– Fairfax


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  • Curly1952

    I wish National were asking the questions at question time in Parliament today. I think question time is going to be a “need to watch” today as some of the responses from the Nats could be hilarious as they ridicule the left over this ‘union”

    • Keeping Stock

      Then there’s the General Debate Curly, so guess what National’s topic de jour will be.

  • Keeping Stock

    The brown stuff is already hitting the fan. On the TV3 news at 7am James Shaw claimed that the Greens had not ruled out a possible post-election deal with National. Fifteen minutes later Turei stated clearly the sole aim of this marriage of convenience is to get rid of National, and the Greens would never do a deal with them.

    I met Shaw in person a few weeks ago, and he certainly puts a far more moderate face to the Greens. I could see him being able to talk with National Ministers on issues of common interest. But he is a lone soul in the Green caucus, and I suspect his tenure as co-leader-with-a-willy is going to be a brief one.

    • R&BAvenger

      Mixed messaging will be a problem between Labour and Greens talking heads, if the Greens can’t even get it right, straight after signing the MOU, then it’s already dead in the water. Mixed messages and eventual back tracking doesn’t inspire confidence in them as an alternative.

    • Alan Beresford B’Stard

      I bet Shaw is miffed at being usurped by Robertson for finance. And can you believe anybody thinks Robbo would make a good finance minister.
      Chris Trotter on PH was shaking his head wondering why they are doing this.
      Should make for some interesting dialogue in the coming months anyway.

    • Crowgirl

      This is the main problem with this MoC – both parties have proven time and again they have no message discipline.

      They’re only consistent in their inconsistency!

    • Christie

      Unless he can get rid of Turei. That is a possibility if they fare badly in the next election.

    • Jimmie

      He may be the co leader with a willy, but it is obvious from the actions of Turei that he doesn’t have any gonads to go with it.

      It wouldn’t surprise me if she doesn’t carry a well used rolling pin around in her designer handbag for dealing with uppity co leaders who don’t know their place.

  • Quinton Hogg

    I think there may be a few patsy questions thrown in for amusement.
    Having said that I think it does Wallace and Gromit a gross disservice to be compared to Mr Little and Ms Turei.

    • Karma

      I have to say that the pair of them were very good at deflecting Paul Henry’s questions this morning, which suggests they haven’t thought this through. As for the Wallace & Gromit comparison, I agree it’s a gross disservice – they remind more of Ren and Stimpy. Ren the demented Chihuahua was also prone to angry outbursts, and Stimpy the cat was none to bright.

  • Isherman

    Being so far out from the election, if the next lot of polls taken after this arrangement show a nasty hit of say 5% or more for Labour…what then? keep the MoU but try it with a different Leader? Start pouring cold water over it all? Can’t wait till their out.

  • Sally

    All this is an official confirmation that they so useless and can’t win on their own.
    I am left wondering if Labour sees this MoU as a sneaky way to get some of their electioneering paid via the Greens funds.

  • spanishbride

    This announcement is so boring that our editor won’t even let me write about it. I already had a fantastic post planned in my head. I was going to compare this pact with the brilliant strategy of the Internet and Mana party concocted by Wrongly Wrongson AKA Martyn Bradbury.

    Their pact ended in tears and I am confident this one will too just without all the hope and fanfare. You can say one thing about Kim Dotcom, he certainly knew how to waste money and put on a good show.

    • In Vino Veritas

      Tears? That would be tears of laughter from National and their supporters. For goodness sake, I’m in tears laughing at them now. Can there have been leaders of main opposition parties as risible as this lot are now, ever, anywhere in history?

    • GoingRight

      Do you think KDC is helping behind the scene on this one too? Smacks a bit of déjà vue.

  • Aucky

    The photo is hilarious. Did they get a wedding photographer in to do it?

    Talk about the odd couple.

    I’m wondering how Angry will go down as a speaker at the next annual Greens’ love-in.

  • In Vino Veritas

    Hilarious. Labour and Greens agree to do something they have been doing for eight years, and have a press conference to tell everyone something they already knew.
    Labour give no assurances that the Greens will get anything from them in a coalition deal and the Greens accept that this is their reality. Status quo remains. And they have a press conference to tell everyone something they already knew.
    Any TV face time is good face time for Little and Turei. What utter muppets.

  • oldmanNZ

    “the MOU implies it will run only until the election and it is not being presented as a coalition deal.”

    I dont get this.
    To have a formal back, they must then agree on some sort of policies.
    For example, pre election Labour wants to change the flag, Greens do not.

    So they must have a joint policy, as in most marriages to work, who will give in? assume the greens decided a give in and agree on a flag change.
    After the election, and god forbid they win, would the deal stands or is it not a coalition deal and the greens can say no.?
    Or would each part just not attack the other party for their hair brain ideas? Thus agree or disagree in silence.

    • ex-JAFA

      I can’t see it amounting to any more than a Confidence & Supply agreement, which they’d organise post-election regardless of any pre-election cosying-up. And a C&S agreement only means they’d vote for the Budget; they’re still free to argue against any element of it or oppose them on any other matter.

      As has been said elsewhere, merely a press conference to announce the status quo.

  • twittertit

    Headline in the Herald:
    “Labour, Greens to work together to stop National at next election”

    And that there is the root of the left’s problems. If they really want to be seen as a government in waiting, stop claiming they’re out to get National, and start presenting REAL policy and talking about things that MOST kiwis actually care about.

    Until they start doing this, they will get absolutely nowhere.

    • Alan Beresford B’Stard

      Yep both Little and Turei went out of there way this morning on PH to be nasty about National.

      • Aylene Price

        Situation normal then?!

    • KatB

      Absolutely. They’re not talking about some epidemic disease, that once stopped, they can all go home. They’re talking about the party running our country at the moment, if they stop them, then what are Greens/Labour proposing? Nothing much from what I’ve heard so far. They’re going to have to have more of a game plan than just to “stop National” to get some support.

  • kereru

    “crystal clear clarity” (is there any other kind of clarity?) = muddy the waters
    progressive = regressive
    credible = untenable

    Same old, same old, empty platitudes. All over the Western world voters are rejecting the Left and its self-indulgent rhetoric and are turning to the right. These two seem to have missed the boat.

    ‘When the blind lead the blind they both fall into a pit’, as the Good Word says.

    • Usaywot

      Yeah, love that “crystal clear clarity” So funny.

  • JEL51

    Reminds me of that other marriage made in Heaven but this time it is missing the Flower Girl, Page Boy & Ring Barer….Harre, Hone & Slim Kim

  • Bryan

    evidently Gerry gave a very funny speech about it yesterday did anyone hear it

  • Damon Mudgway

    No matter how much they spin it, anything that reeks of desperation is still going stink.

    At least Labour have conceded they will never get the numbers to govern alone. All I can see is a bunch of muppets trying to protect their own incomes for the future.

    The Greens, by siding with a far left party can only push their centrist voters into looking elsewhere. A colleague yesterday stated as a traditional Green voter she can’t in all good conscience vote for a party that sides with Labour. I wonder if the Greens even care that they are alienating some of their voter base by playing mummies and daddies with the red menace.

    If it looks and smells like poo, it probably is poo.

  • kayaker

    There’s a whole 18 months until the election. Greens-Labour have made their move far too early (but we all know they’re doing it this soon to be ultra-double-nasty in The House in the hope they can get up a groundswell against JK). This non-magnanimous marriage will end in an acrimonious divorce.

    However, back to my point – if they were being at all strategic (which they’re not capable of) they would’ve quietly got on with it, then formalised closer to the election. What they have done here, is given plenty of room for another party/ies to emerge as a viable alternative to Greens and Labour voters who feel disaffected by this coalition. We will end up with another ragtag bunch on the left at the next election, much like we had at the last election and we all know what the result will be.

    • Crowgirl

      And when the arrangement turns to custard (and they’re already dysfunctional looking) they have a loooong time till the election to have the drama play out in full media glare and not much time to rebuild the wreckage.

  • richard.b

    I have a question that I hope some oilers might be able to

    Is this a promotion or demotion for Andrew Little?

    Mr 8% has gone from the leader of party poling in the 20’s
    to a 1/3 share of a combined party poling a little under 40%.

  • Whitey

    Voters have always had a clear idea of what the opposition looks like. Last election there was a huge billboard up in Wellington reminding voters that “a vote for Labour means 30% Greens”. There was a time when a good number of people liked Labour enough to overlook the Green problem, but thanks to the untiring efforts of Captain Y-Fronts and the rest of the dream team, that time is past.

  • Pita

    In their myopic world, which is both red and green, suddenly one + one = three!

  • Terry

    “A weapon of mass distraction”. Brilliant! Love it!

  • RockinBob625

    Grant Robertson is Minister of Finance, but nothing else is decided? So who gets to be PM, and which one of the Green leadership pairing gets left out, ie ‘not’ PM or Deputy PM?

    This deal is still fraught with drama and arguments to come.

    • Abjv

      co-deputy PMs

      • RockinBob625

        Cool, so Meteria is PM and Little and Shaw are Deputy PM?

        • OneTrack

          That will be her plan, even if she doesn’t actually get the title.

    • PhantomsDoc

      According to Metiria, on the radio this morning, that is still in discussion and they will be having chats about it. Lets say Mike and Steven were having an absolute ball with Annette denying Metiria said it.

    • OneTrack

      Surely it would be “fair” if they shared the Prime Ministership – co-Prime Ministers, Metiria, James and Angry. Maybe bring Jacinda in to even up the numbers? And then everybody is happy.

    • TheRobberDog

      Actually I think you would find that Winston Peters would be PM… I think that is the only way they would tip National. I’d love to be a fly on the wall when Winnie breaks the news of his price to the married couple…

  • CheesyEarWax

    The formal stitch up has made Labour look more loony, and Mr 7% Little look like Mr 5%. Not sure why they used material girl instead of Shaw in the press conference with Little. Shaw would have provided much more credibility.

    • Bryan

      remember she was labour and walked away but the look on their faces what is really going on and I don’t think Annette will be happy with this so wait for Friday and her usual slot with Paula Bennett on Paul Henry show, Paul will bring it up for sure and Paula will have some fun

    • Rightsideofthebed

      Because the Greens would have demanded the ‘one of each’ photo opportunity. Remember – they’re all equal, just some are more equal than others.

      • CheesyEarWax

        The Greens have missed a good opportunity to put Shaw in the limelight here. Whilst the stitch up is just a formality in many peoples eyes but presenting Shaw instead of Turei would have provided the unknown factor. I also think they should ditch Turei and use Shaw should be outright leader.

  • JustanObserver

    I keep seeing on FB this morning that my ‘Progressive’ friends are all in a ‘slurr …’ about the civil-union yesterday.
    Over and over I see comments popping up from re-advocates or green-sayers all commenting that this arrangement is so false, and will NEVER provide any realistic options.
    Each of them have said they have no idea who to vote for, because Winston won’t play his cards.
    They despise JK, but feel they have done … ‘ok-ish’ under National
    Angry Little is an absolute ‘numpty’ … “but we have always voted Labour”
    The Greens want to save the planet … “but we can’t afford their taxes”
    So it only leaves ‘Winnie the Poo’, “but he can’t be trusted” …
    In around 18 months time, we will either be happily continuing on in the top 5 countries globally, or we will be in a ‘hand-cart’ on it’s way to hell.

  • Zanyzane

    I am a traditional Labour voter but voted National ever since David Cunliffe came up with the idiotic CGT. I told him directly he was nuts and would lose himself and Goff his job. Sure enough Shearer and Parker steps in and I kept warning them to drop CGT and guess what same thing happened. And again I told Cunliffe to drop CGT and man that guy is deaf. Now we have an idiotic Robertson so very keen on any tax including CGT and many other possible taxes. What absolute nutcases!!!! Now a total train wreck with the Greens???? Looks like my vote goes to National again. I actually hate voting for National but these idiots give me no choice, what absolute nut jobs Labour has become.

    • Dave

      Nice to get another perspective, and despite everything thrown at the Nats, their financial management is at least on track. We might not agree with all the spending etc, but with their fiscal management, at least there are some funds to spend!

    • Usaywot

      I’d be curious to know why you hate National.

      • Zanyzane

        Its not that I hate national. Its because I am just another paid employee and for employees, more holidays and more employer kiwisaver to 5% plus plus would just be great which Labour totally ignores. For my retirement I have bought investment properties and of course my lakeside holiday home which is what middle hard working employees do. But Labour has gone totally nutcase and think that investment properties are the privilege of the rich. That is stupidity. It is middle New Zealanders trying to save towards their retirement. The rich are busy investing in holiday homes overseas and commercial buildings rather than residential investment property.

  • Keanne Lawrence

    The individual and collective objective of The Mud Mob is to “bring down the Government” is still an no win platform to gain support.
    Watching the happy “couple” on PH they deflected every direct question with a political statement that came out like a whinge fest as usual. The one obvious thing was how the Material Girl wanted to dominate the responses which is little surprise as she has a lifetime of spouting BS.
    They seem to have a ghost form of MOU and we must wonder why they need to bother simply to tell their diminishing support base what they already know. After being considered for 18 months there seems to be a lot of primary elements that they are “yet to have a conversation about”. Except, Robbo for Finance which is straight out of the Union Playbook. The whole fiasco is a joke.

  • Wayne Peter McIndoe

    Any close relationship between Labour and the Greens will scare alot of voters away, happened in the past two elections and it will happen again

  • Chris Bell

    If those two become co-leaders we’re all history….

  • WBC

    They should have gone all out to distance themselves from the Greens when they had a chance. Now it is too late, they actually bled voter to them. The Greens will not be on government, NZ voters won’t allow it, and that means that nor will Labour.

    Honestly, they deserve all the failure they get, they really do appear to seek it out. First of all they gave the next election to National when they were played by Peters up North and now they’ve just rolled over and admitted they are not really even then opposition anymore.

  • waldopepper

    i guess all thats left is to form a three way with colin craig, and their journey to the dark side will be complete.