New right-wing party now shopping round

By Derek Cheng

Sir Roger Douglas. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Sir Roger Douglas. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Sir Roger Douglas believes the Act Party will survive and re-enter Parliament next term, despite the emergence of a new right-wing party that could split votes.

Reform New Zealand, a party that includes some former Act supporters disgruntled with leader Rodney Hide, launched its website yesterday.

Spokesman Andrew McLennan, a lawyer, said there was a core group driving the party. They were working towards gaining 500 members to register officially as a political party.

Sir Roger said Reform NZ had approached him, but he did not want to have anything to do with it.

"I don't know if Reform will get off the ground, but there's no way I'm going to be involved," he said.

Peter Tashkoff, who was thrown out of Act last year after publicly criticising Mr Hide, said he had been involved in setting up the party's website, but had since decided not to take part.

A statement said it was founded "to help reverse New Zealand's growing dependence on the state.

"New Zealand recently enjoyed the best global economy in a lifetime and with that the chance to restore its future prosperity. Instead, tens of billions were wasted pandering to socialist ideology."

The party is understood to be shopping around for a leader who could help it reach the 5 per cent threshhold needed to enter Parliament.

Sir Roger said he did not think it would threaten Act's position, and expected his party to be in Parliament after November's election.

But "to have influence you need nine or 10 [seats], and it's not looking like that will happen".

- NZ Herald

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