NZ First MP Shane Jones says his party won't tolerate being absorbed by the Labour-led Government in the run up to the election.

Jones also signalled NZ First was looking to keep its options open and so didn't want fall out with any other political leaders.

Premium - Labour and NZ First reach deal over commercial rents, which is likely to cover few businesses
Winston Peters says refreshing NZ First policy under Todd Muller would be 'intelligent'
NZF Foundation spent $130k on company run by Winston Peters' lawyer
Money from mysterious NZ First Foundation used to fund a NZ First MP's UK travel junket

On his regular slot TVNZ's Breakfast with National MP Paula Bennett, Jones said under the last government, all the minor parties were "absorbed by the bigger organism".


He was referring to the confidence and supply agreements National had with ACT, United Future, and the Māori Party - two of which are no longer in Parliament.

Jones said NZ First wouldn't let that happen to them.

"My leader and I are not going to tolerate being absorbed or completely shaded by the Labour party and you're going to see us well and truly distinguish ourselves over the next twelve weeks which is when voting starts."

To which Bennett egged him on with a "give it heaps, Shane, give it heaps".

Subscribe to Premium

After the 2017 election, Labour won 36.89 per cent of the vote but Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was able to form the current coalition Government with the support of NZ First, which won 7.2 per cent.

But in the 1 NEWS-Colmar Brunton poll last month, NZ First's support had dropped to 2.9 per cent meaning the party wouldn't be in Parliament without winning a seat.

Speaking to their strategy as to how to avoid being "absorbed", Jones said he believed voters looked for personality as much as IQ.

"We already have a lot of visibility, certainly in the form of our leader - the most seasoned campaigner.


"But look, there is a balance. We don't want to personally fall out with any of the political leaders in the sense there's not options after the election campaign."