Adam Bennett

Adam is a political reporter for the New Zealand Herald.

Cunliffe premature to rule out portfolios for Internet and Mana - Harre

Internet Party leader Laila Harre, left, Labour leader David Cunliffe and Mana leader Hone Harawira.
Internet Party leader Laila Harre, left, Labour leader David Cunliffe and Mana leader Hone Harawira.

Labour Leader David Cunliffe is "premature" to rule out ministerial spots for Internet Party leader Laila Harré and Mana leader Hone Harawira Ms Harre said yesterday.

Her comments come after Internet Party founder Kim Dotcom took to twitter to mock Mr Cunliffe over his statements at Labour's election year Congress at the weekend.

Mr Cunliffe told media that his preferences for support parties were NZ First and the
Green Party and it was "highly unlikely" Ms Harré and Mr Harawira would be ministers, although he would not rule out talking to Internet-Mana.

Ms Harré yesterday told the Herald that she and the Internet Party were "not at all hung up on becoming ministers".

"Our priority is to change the Government and we want a Government that's capable of implementing a shared agenda that each of the parties that are part of the change of Government process will contribute to.

"I think it's premature for David Cunliffe or anyone else to start announcing now what their conditions will be and I think that the relative strength of the parties in the negotiations post-election will be up to the voters."

Ms Harré said she "had a good laugh" at Dotcoms' tweeted response to Mr Cunliffe's comments in which German businessman suggested the Labour leader needed Internet Mana's support to become prime minister but wasn't prepared to offer anything in return.

"I thought it was very funny. I think that New Zealanders have a sense of humour and I'm sure others laughed in the same way I did."

Mr Cunliffe's comments come after recent attacks by National Government Ministers around the prospect of a Labour led coalition involving the Greens and Internet Mana including Attorney General Chris Finlayson's portrayal of such a coalition as a multi headed opposition Hydra that kept springing new heads.

Mana Leader Hone Harawira said he wasn't bothered by Mr Cunliffe ruling him out as a potential minister.

"He has some demons to deal with in terms of National, he has some demons to deal with in his own party I guess he's trying to come across as a strong leader".

He advised Mr Cunliffe to "have a KitKat" and stop worrying about post- election talks at this point.

"Internet Mana is too busy building on recent positive poll results to worry about what might happen after the election", he said.

"Perhaps Labour should focus on doing the same".


- NZ Herald

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_a1 at 02 Oct 2014 05:39:19 Processing Time: 454ms