Jacinda Ardern better be hoping Winston Peters and James Shaw enjoy those surprise make-over shows; And why the Greens don't need a final decision from NZ First before ratifying Labour agreement

By Alex Tarrant

Jacinda Ardern better be hoping Winston Peters and James Shaw are both fans of those surprise makeover TV programmes.

The typical episode sees a homeowner leave a bunch interior designers and builders to shake things up for a day, is led back in blindfolded when the work is complete, whips it off and screams with delight/surprise/disappointment/all of these when they see their revamped townhouse.

This is going to be playing out on the Left over the next day or two, if this is the direction Winston Peters’ lot decide to turn.

Labour Party leader Jacinda Ardern made headlines on Tuesday morning with comments indicating the Greens were going to wait until Kingmaker New Zealand First had made a choice on which way it would go, before Green membership delegates would vote to ratify the party’s agreement with Labour.

This could be read as the Greens demanding the final say. It’s not. My understanding is that, while movement from New Zealand First is required before the Green Party holds its delegate call, this doesn’t mean New Zealand First would have had to have made its final decision – privately or publicly.

The Greens are waiting for Labour to indicate to them that they’ve settled with New Zealand First on what a deal would look like, if New Zealand First were to eventually lean that way. (It’s likely that at the same time NZ First would have reached the same sort of agreement with National.) It’s not expected that the Greens would be told any details by Labour. This also doesn't mean that Cabinet positions would need to have been agreed on by this point (Peters doesn't want the baubles clouding the judgement of his caucus).

The Greens would then make the call to the 170 or so delegates representing the party’s membership to go over the nature of the Labour-Greens agreement which is already “pretty much” agreed on (Ardern’s comment this morning).

If 75% approval is received, the Greens will let Labour know, who’ll in turn let NZ First know that the Labour-Greens deal is signed off, and that they can go ahead with a Labour-led government if Peters decides this is the way he wants to go. Again, Peters isn’t expected to be told what the Labour-Greens agreement entails.

As Ardern noted on Tuesday morning, Labour has carried out blind negotiations with both NZ First and the Greens – neither knows the results of negotiations with the other. Labour is being “mindful that in the coalition or agreements that we sign that they are compatible with one another,” Ardern said on RNZ.

So, despite Peters effectively having the final say, his and Shaw's blindfolds will be lifted at the same time. Ardern better hope they don’t react too badly.

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A government starting with blindfolds and hush-hush !! -

What a Circus would that be ? - wonder what happens after all the ugly faces are revealed once these "blindfolds"are removed .... Is this a Game ??

Time will tell, but it wont be hard to beat the obfuscation, propaganda and outright lies that we have had from National. My greatest worry is that our housing ponzi that was allowed to get totally out of hand under nine years of National will implode catastrophically. If so, be very very sure that a cynical National party will blame the Labour led coalition. What we are seeing are merely negotiations; get over them. You and your ilk are showing your abject fear.

I agree, this election we've seen a Stephen Joyce-fronted National party go full Tea Party.

Propaganda should be a socially correct male goose, not page 1 of the National Party election playbook.

lol, me and my like do not have fear , we make a coin however markets go ...
housing has nothing to do with this "threesome" whether it happens or not ... which BTW will Not implode as you keep hoping .. lol.
Oh and stop looking for excuses for a Labour led Gov failures , it's too early in the piece mate :), let them get in first ...lol. ... What a Circus !!

Being in Government with the old goat will be a real life version of the Duplex https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duplex_(film)

Labour/Greens are welcome to take the win on this one. If National can be blamed for the size of trucks on the road, then it's on for young and old when the Labour/Green/NZF coalition is in power.

Well, it's actually a smart move from the Greens not to sign off any coalition agreement with Labour before they see what Labour & NZF negotiated (IF NZF goes left). The Greens have been left out of any coalition talks with NZF so how can they possibly agree to any coalition ?

Is this any different to how the last 2 govt coalition agreements went? Is everyone forgetting we had poles apart ACT and the Maori party in the last govt, with loner Dunne thrown in? I guess the fact 2 of those parties were 1 man bands made it easier.
It seems the focus is on policy, and so it should be.
I also get the feeling the Greens will see the next 3 years as a revival period, and NZ First as a "where to after Winston" period. Jacinda will be looking longterm too. Its possible everyone is looking to where they want to be at the next election , rather than what they want to achieve in this term.

Very funny title and article Alex, not untrue either