The Wellington dirty deal

Whispers have reached Kiwiblog of intense negotiations occurring between and in Wellington to try and conclude a deal. The gist of what is on offer is:

  1. Green Party formally endorses Labour candidate Justin Lester for Mayor
  2. Labour stands down its candidate in one of the three Wellington seats and endorses the Green candidate to give them a parliamentary seat
  3. Annette King goes list only, freeing up Rongotai
  4. If Labour-Greens win, Annette is made High Commission to Canberra
  5. The Labour Deputy Leader would normally be Deputy PM, but if King takes a diplomatioc posting this means they can offer Winston Deputy Prime Minister

The negotiations have hit a snag though. While Labour effectively just needs the agreement of the caucus, the Greens would have to have any such deal agreed by their grassroots members in Wellington and they are less than enthusiastic.

If they do manage to conclude a deal, it would be interesting to see which seat Labour offers up. Wellington Central is the best seat nationally for the Greens (they beat Labour on party vote) but I can’t imagine Grant Robertson wants to give it up.

Rongotai is also strong for the Greens, but it is not guaranteed a Green candidate would win as National did win the party vote there.

Ohariu is attractive for them as CR votes get split between Peter Dunne and the National candidate. But if Labour and Greens did a deal, I suspect the CR voters would vote even more tactically to stop a Green MP.

Some in the Greens say they don’t need an Electorate MP, and at 10% are safely over the 5% threshold. Others have looked at what happens overseas when you finally make Government and are worried that they could be at risk in the future and want an electorate seat as a safety net.

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