Agreeing with Russel

Pete George blogs:

Some party leaders were asked their views on waka jumping. National:

“I think there is potentially the need for legislation to support that view,” says Mr Key.

And National’s rank-and-file are calling for a law change too, clearly worried Mr Gilmore was going to do a Horan, and stick around on $144,000 a year.


And the Opposition agrees the likes of Mr Gilmore and Mr Horan should not be able to stay.

“It wouldn’t have helped good government, and actually overall it brings the Parliament into disrepute as well,” say Labour leader David Shearer.

NZ First:

“People are voting for the party, not for someone who thinks they can behave any way they like,” says New Zealand First leader Winston Peters.

There was one party leader who bucked the majority in support of protection against leaders abusing their power:

But the Greens don’t agree.

“Party leaders like me would basically get to say to individual MPs, ‘If you don’t do what I like then I’ll expel you from caucus and you’ll be kicked out of Parliament,’” says Greens co-leader Russel Norman. 

On this issue, I agree with Russel Norman. As frustrating as it is, when a List MP leaves their party and goes rogue, the solution is better candidate selection procedures – not turning List MPs into party creatures even more than they are. Once parties gain the ability to sack MPs from Parliament mid-term, there will be a chilling effect.


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