Green Party co-leader James Shaw is distancing himself and his party from comments made by new MP Barry Coates about the party not supporting a Labour/New Zealand First government. In a post on The Daily Blog, Barry Coates – a list MP who entered Parliament in October last year – said if the Greens are not part of a coalition government, the party would not accept a Labour/New Zealand First government. Mr Coates said this could mean forcing the country back to the polls for another election. “[Labour/New Zealand First] could not count on the support of the Green Party there is no automatic support that is provided for a government under those circumstances,” he wrote. But Mr Shaw says Mr Coates spoke “out of turn.”
“As a new MP he hasn’t yet worked out what he should and shouldn’t be talking about and I think this will be a salient lesson.”
But he avoided answering whether the Greens would give their support in any post-election scenario where Labour and New Zealand First were forming a government.
“Look, all of these things are hypothetical until election day because you just don’t know how many MPs each party [will have]”, Mr Shaw says.