Monday, June 09, 2008

Labour's friends are deserting them

Matt McCarten has written a pretty good column in which he notes that Labour is lacking prospective coalition partners. The Greens realised this a while back which is why it is trying to rort the system to give the left more votes.

But Labour losing its friends is the fault of Helen Clark. That's what happens when you go into Government with support of the only parties that won`t last if their leaders go - NZ First and United Future. The Greens and the Maori party rely on different cleavages for their support - post-materialistic and ethnic - and these cleavages are rising in New Zealand's version of multi party politics. Plus, the Greens have seen themselves as Labour's natural coalition partners - but were snuffled when UnitedFuture and NZ First said they would not be part of any coalition with the Greens.

But any future majority coalition government may well need the support of the Maori Party or the Greens - or both. But its the Greens who are the "last cab off the rank" at the moment. The Maori Party is the centre party of this election - the only party that is pissing them off is the party that needs them the most - the Greens.

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