Mar 19 • 6M

So what would be the point of a Green vote again?

James Shaw tries to answer that question in his 'State of The Planet' speech, saying Greens won't support a governing party without 'strongest possible climate action', but again rules out National

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Bernard Hickey
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James Shaw has again said the Greens would be better ‘in the tent’ with Labour than out, despite Labour’s policy bonfire last week torching much of what the Government was doing to reduce emissions. File Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty Images

TL;DR: The Green Party has never been more popular than in some recent polls, but a 10%-plus share of the vote in the election on October 14 may prove a pyrrhic victory because Labour’s belief the Greens would never do something or nothing to allow a National-ACT Government gives Green votes much less power and leverage than any record share implies.

It may mean Te Pāti Māori and The Opportunities Party (TOP) actually have more power to dictate policies in any post-election negotiation than the Greens, even if the Greens have more MPs. That’s because, unlike the Greens, Labour will know there’s a very real prospect of the two smaller parties either joining National or allowing National to form a Government by choosing not to support Labour on supply and confidence votes.

The Greens have again reiterated they would always at least support Labour on supply and confidence, which means they can never credibly demand Cabinet roles or big policy wins in proportion to their vote share, ‘or else’. There is no credible ‘or else’ scenario for the Greens, as emphasised again by Co Leader James Shaw in his Sunday ‘State of the Planet’ speech, in which he said the Greens would not accept anything less than ‘strong climate action’, but also said the Greens would never back National.

Paying subscribers can see more detail and analysis below the paywall fold and in the podcast above.

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