Greens dismiss possible deal with National

Author
Claire Trevett, NZ Herald ,
Section
Vote2017,
Publish Date
Tuesday, 3 October 2017, 11:33AM
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Green leader James Shaw has dismissed talk of a possible Green-National deal as "noise and no signal."

"Our job is to form a new government with the Labour Party. That's what I said on election night, that's what I campaigned on for the last 18 months."

He said there was no substance to the speculation and while he had said he was happy to talk to National leader Bill English if he called, English was yet to call.

"So as far as I'm concerned everything else is pure speculation."

He believed there was a high chance of a Labour-NZ First-Green Government and said he was not worried the Greens would get locked out by NZ First in a repeat of 2005.

"A lot has changed in the last 12 years."

He said the most stable option was a coalition government rather than having one party offering support from the cross benches.

The cross benches are among the nine permutations NZ First Leader Winston Peters has said are before him.

Asked if that would encourage Shaw to talk to National to try ensure a more stable government, Shaw said he would deal with that if it arose.

"I don't think that's a realistic proposition. I think that's pretty unstable but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it."

Shaw said he did not expect to hold further talks until after special votes.

Winston Peters has declined to comment to meida at the airport this morning except to say 384,000 special votes were yet to be counted.

The Green priorities included climate change, poverty and clean rivers - but he would not say if the Greens would be willing to drop proposals such as a water tax or nitrates levy to get into government.

"It's a negotiation. Nobody gets everything they want."

He said in "mature" MMP environments such as Germany it was not unusual for negotiations to take some time.

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