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United Future Is The Centre Party NZ Needs

United Future Is The Centre Party New Zealand Needs

United Future leader, Hon Peter Dunne, says his party is the centre party New Zealand needs to make MMP work effectively.

He says the apparent meltdown of the Alliance shows the political shakedown introduced by MMP is still continuing, and it is clear that what is emerging is a system with blocs of parties on the left and the right, with no clear moderator in the centre.

“United Future is the only party that can credibly play that role, although in the present Parliament, where the government has a clear majority on most issues, it is difficult to do so with just one MP.”

“In the previous Parliament, however, for most of the time, especially after the break-up of the National/New Zealand First coalition, I did hold the balance of power and exercised it responsibly in the interests of stable government,” Mr Dunne says.

Mr Dunne says that the concept of a true, moderating centre party is hitherto unknown in New Zealand politics, because the old FPP system always produced clear majorities for either the left or the right, although centre parties are an integral part of proportional representation systems in most other countries.

“Although as an opposition party United Future votes against the present government on matters of supply and confidence, the party takes every other issue on its merits, and has supported the government from time to time on particular key matters, for example, the establishment of the Superannuation Fund, and expects to do likewise in the future.”

“However, the attitude of the big parties to coalition partners also has to change.”

“United in coalition with National, New Zealand First with National and now the Alliance with Labour have all suffered the same fate, even though they are vastly different parties in vastly different governments.”

“Until major parties work out properly the dynamics of effective coalition government that problem will remain and the incentives will be for small parties to stay outside formal coalitions and offer support on an issue by issue basis, lest they be consumed, ” Mr Dunne says. Ends

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