Gareth Hughes
Ohariu: deal or no deal?

There’s been a lot of talk lately on electorate deals and I’d like to put myself on the record as the Green Party candidate standing in Ōhariu.

The Green Party does not have a deal with the Labour candidate, Charles Chauvel, nor does it intend to ask its supporters to vote for him in an attempt to defeat Peter Dunne in the Ōhariu seat.

This rumour has come about because Dunne is using it to mask his own desperate dependence on the National Party for his political survival, after steadily losing support in the electorate.

Voters can decide for themselves how to use their two ticks strategically, they don’t need to be instructed.

In Ōhariu, just like in every other electorate, we are only campaigning for Kiwis’ party vote.

I’m not telling people who to vote for as their electorate MP in Ōhariu but I am upfront with them – I like Charles and I think Dunne is done: he’s out-dated and voters are tiring of his brand of bland ‘any way the wind blows’ politics. This is evidenced by his falling popularity in the electorate over the last three elections, as well as his dismal party vote throughout the country.

Our position is very different from National’s deals in Epsom and Ōhariu where they are telling their supporters to vote for the Act and United Future Party’s candidates.

Firstly, we aren’t contesting electorate seats anywhere, only campaigning for party votes.

Secondly, if we received 46% party votes, like the National Party received in Ōhariu in 2008 or 62% of the party votes, like the National Party received in Epsom in 2008 – we may well campaign for electorate votes in those seats. We didn’t, so we’re not.

Clearly it’s a very different situation we are in. National’s decision to support other parties candidates in seats where they have the largest share of votes, and would normally contest and likely win, is all about putting these two parties on life-support, for their own ends.

15 thoughts on “Ohariu: deal or no deal?

  1. I don’t think Dunne’s a centrist.

    He’s an authoritarian drug warrior (while at the same time corruptly accepting payment from tobacco companies.

    He wants to increase taxes on ordinary working people in order to give wealthy couples a tax cut.

    He opposed civil unions.

    He’s basically a semi-detached member of National’s caucus (much as Anderton was with Labour).

    Anyone in Ohairu with the slightest progressive instinct will be voting for Chauvel to try and get rid of the slime.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 3 (+13)

  2. if..as you say..you are only campaigning for the party vote..

    what on earth is wrong with indicating to green supporters in strategic seats the way to vote to best benefit the green party..

    ..whether it be to get rid of dunne..or whatever…

    …your nudge-nudge-wing-wink stance is too coy/clever by far..”

    ..just be upfront…and call it as it is…

    ..as in..’i want yr green party vote…and yr help in getting rid of dunne..and the best way to do that is to vote for charles..’

    i repeat..what is wrong with that..?

    green candidates should be doing that all over the country…

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 7 (0)

  3. one other obvious example is the green party candidate in te tai tokerau ..

    ..they should campaign strongly for a party vote for the greens…

    ..and advise all and sundry to vote for hone as the candidate…

    ..and this whole coy ‘i couldn’t possibly tell you how to vote’ stance is bemusing to say the least…

    ..especially seeing as you spend the whole election campaign…

    ..feverishly telling people how to vote..(!)

    ..f.f.s..!

    ..can we get some commonsense/literate-strategy happening here…?

    ..eh..?

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6 (-4)

  4. As an independant party, the Greens should stick to that message. Whilst it seems that Labour is a more natural coalition partner.. I thought the party had not ruled out working with either side to further the Green kaupapa ?
    I guess Dunne with his extreme views is the main opposition in the seat. Kia-ora

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 (+2)

  5. Given media coverage of the northern, Epsom and Ohariu electorates Green candidates and party leaders will get plenty of opportunity to state party policy to campaign only for the party vote – and note how particularly relevant that is to these electorates.

    “Party vote Green” is sufficient otherwise.

    PS MMP can be improved by having preferential voting in electorates and by new arrangements for parties winning electorate seats but not reaching the threshold on the party list vote – ending the entitlement to extra seats entirely to prevent rorting of the sytem. Instead I would allow parties falling under the 5% threshold to claim seats at a 50% rate. Thus about 1 seat for every 1.6% of the vote

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 (+3)

  6. i wonder if gareth hughes will ever answer these questions…?

    does he view his appearances at frogblog as an opportunity to interact/answer/explain…

    ..or does he view them as mini sermons from the mount..

    ..and will brook no dissent/questions…

    ..he’s an m.p now…didn’tyaknow..?

    i think this questioning of tactics is entirely valid…

    ..and your disdaining to answer/reply just reeks of arrogance..

    ..really…not a good look…eh..?

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

    [frog: Calm down, Gareth is away on holiday.]

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5 (-5)

  7. Yeah, this is a fair response from Hughes, and he makes a lot of valid points. I hop by 2014 though Hughes, and especially the co-leaders, are all actively trying to win electorate seats, so we can really start to get a permanent foothold on the map. Ohariu would be a potential winner, as well as Wellington Central.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1 (+3)

  8. @alex
    Yes the Greens main message is “party vote Green” but that shouldn’t stop the party supporters from giving ‘a double tick’ to the Greens, in their electorates… Kia-ora Koutou Katoa

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 (0)

  9. I’m not generally one who likes to play the personality game, but I did lose a lot of respect for Dunne when he wrote a scathing post on his blog questioning the accolades that Jeannette received when she retired from parliament:http://www.unitedfuture.org.nz/a-couple-of-unpleasant-political-facts-to/

    Dunne states…”no member of the Greens has ever held office as a Minister in a government… In contrast, Jeanette’s self-confessed Parliamentary career highlight was chairing the Local Government Select Committee. The usual hallmark of political success is being part of a government, and on that basis the Greens have been our most unsuccessful small party under MMP.

    I always thought that you should judge people (or a Party) by their character and achievements, not the positions they may attain. It will be interesting to see hear the accolades when Dunne himself retires…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 (+3)

  10. While Jeanette was trail blazing, Dunne has achieved nothing that couldn’t have happened just as easily if he weren’t there. His goal was simply getting into govt, which is all the easier when you’re prepared to whore for either side.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 (+5)

  11. I am facinated why The Greens are upset about this, when Fitzsimmons was party to the same thing a few years ago.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3 (-3)

  12. Also note that Dunne calls his Blog “Peters Positions”, he has had to change them a lot to keep in power.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 (+1)

  13. “..which is all the easier when you’re prepared to whore for either side…”

    as the greens that have just voted to leave that two-way-whore-door open..?

    ..and as for ‘peters’ positions’…

    ..there is a low-rent laff to be had from the juxtaposition of those two words..

    ..given that ‘peter’ is common slang for penis…

    ..and pairing dunne with that can bring some unfortunate/distressing images to mind..

    ..if you are not careful…

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4 (-4)

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