The Unthinkable is now being said out loud: Winston Peters as Prime Minister

via 3 News

By the time the academic politically neutral Bryce Edwards toys with the idea of Winston becoming Prime Minister, you know that the Left are working the angles.

The most interesting article on New Zealand First from the weekend was Audrey Young’s New Zealand First party leader Winston Peters: How the Kingmaker could become PM. This must-read feature explains how “At 72, the kingmaker of New Zealand politics could make a final play to snare the top job for himself”.

Here’s Young’s main point: “The chances of Peters becoming Prime Minister this election are not high. But they are not impossible, despite Bill English and Andrew Little having ruled it out, as they must. There are several ways it could happen. New Zealand First could go into coalition with National, conditional on Peters leading the Government for half of the term.

No other support would be required, but after three terms leading the Government, National is likely to be the least receptive to being led by Peters. Any deal involving Peters leading the Government is more likely to be with Labour, which has been in Opposition for three terms, and the Greens who have been outside Government for six terms. New Zealand First could go into coalition with Labour, conditional on Peters leading the Government for half a term, say the first half, which would give Labour the benefit of incumbency at the 2020 election and half the term to decide who its PM would be.”

Although the idea of a minor party leader becoming PM might seem ridiculous, “The idea that the country could be led by head of the smaller party in a coalition is not without precedent. Peters himself has cited the early 1930s, when George Forbes of the United Party was Prime Minister in a coalition with the Reform Party, led by Gordon Coates.”
But would Peters really have the nerve to chase the top job? Young details how New Zealand First made some attempt to win this role when it last negotiated with both Labour and National – back in 1996.

The only way Winston will be PM is if National stuff up the coalition talks and Labour and the Greens are willing to sell their soul to get National out of government.  It’s not as unlikely as it seems, because a terrible result for Labour will see Andrew Little out of the running.  Metiria Turei would never be acceptable, especially after yesterday, which leaves the guy with the most experience:  Winston.

Bill English isn’t the sharpest political tool in the shed.  We can but hope that Joyce and Coleman can keep the idiot from setting a whole new record:  winning the popular vote and still not being in government because of failing to negotiate a deal with NZ First.


– Bryce Edwards quoting Audrey Young, NZ Herald

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