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Cunliffe vows to step on 'coat-tailing'

Wednesday 4 Jun 2014 5:04 p.m.

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The Internet-Mana deal and the Epsom cup of tea – they both seem a back door into Parliament for the Internet Party and ACT.

Labour leader David Cunliffe is promising to close it.

"In the first 100 days of a Government that I lead, we will introduce Government legislation to remove coat-tailing."

Normally a party has to get 5 percent of votes to get MPs into Parliament. However, under the coat-tail rule an MP only needs to win an electorate seat, then just 1.2 percent of the vote to bring in a second MP and 2 percent for a third. 

Mr Cunliffe wants to change the rule that would give the Internet Mana alliance extra MPs, but he is still happy to work with a party his changes would destroy.

"It's for the people to decide who goes to Parliament and once that's occurred we'll have to look around to see who's available to help change the Government."

There is division within Labour about working with the Internet Party, with three MPs speaking out against it. That includes Phil Goff saying on his Facebook page the deal is "rorting the system".

"Kim Dotcom wants Parliamentary representatives to help him oppose his extradition."

Internet Party leader Laila Harre was more interested in talking about decriminalising cannabis today, another move into Green Party territory.

"I'm personally in favour of decriminalisation, but this is something we're putting to members at the moment," she says.

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