Prime Minister Bill English has today confirmed National's intention to work with United Future and the Act Party in September's election - encouraging his party's supporters to vote for David Seymour and Peter Dunne.

"We are encouraging National supporters to give their electorate vote to Act candidate, David Seymour, in Epsom, and United Future candidate, Peter Dunne, in Ohariu - and their party vote to National.

"To be clear, we want to increase our party votes in those electorates and that's what our National Party candidates will be working hard to do."

English said he had already made it clear that if National is re-elected his preference is to continue working with Act, United Future and the Maori Party.


"While we don't always agree, our four parties have maintained a stable and successful Government since late 2008 and we would like to see that continue for the benefit of New Zealanders," English said.

"New Zealand's political stability over the past several years has given this country a consistent economic advantage over many other countries we compare ourselves with."

Dunne faces a serious challenge from Labour candidate and former Police Association president Greg O'Connor in his Wellington Ohariu electorate.

The Green Party is not standing a candidate in Ohariu. In 2014, Dunne won the seat by 710 votes, defeating then Labour candidate Virginia Anderson. National's candidate Brett Hudson got 6120 votes.

Epsom MP and Act leader Seymour received 15,966 votes in 2014, defeating National MP Paul Goldsmith, who got 11,716 votes.

National is not in an electoral accommodation with its other support partner, the Maori Party, although English encouraged voters in the Maori electorate to vote for the Maori Party candidate.

He initially said they should also give their party vote to the Maori Party but then clarified that statement saying only if they could not bring themselves to give National the party vote.

While the Maori Party has been a support partner of National for three terms, it still remains open to working with Labour as well as National.


In governing arrangements, National has not actually required the support of the Maori Party to govern in the past three terms. And National does not stand in the Maori seats.