Greens and Labour talk coalition
Monday 3 Dec 2012 4:49 p.m.
The Greens and Labour are already fighting over how a left-wing coalition would work, following a 3 News Reid-Research poll that shows they could form a government together.
Greens co-leader Russel Norman wants to be Minister of Finance, and is demanding his MPs make up to a third of the Cabinet.
“It’s one of the portfolios that will be on the table,” says Dr Norman. “It will be part of the negotiating mix.”
Yes, that's right: Dr Norman wants to control the country's finances. He would be in charge of the Budget.
“It will be one of the possibilities. It will certainly be on the table.”
But Mr Shearer had a one word answer about giving him the job – “no”.
The 3 News poll shows a Labour-Greens government could take power if an election were held today.
The Greens would have 16 seats - Labour could not do it without them.
So Dr Norman's demands go on. He wants a "proportional Cabinet" that reflects the Greens’ presence. That would mean five to seven ministerial roles.
“That would be the fair approach,” says Dr Norman.
“That would seem to be the fair way to do it,” says Mr Shearer.
So Dr Norman wants Finance, Metiria Turei could get Social Development, Kevin Hague may get Health, Kennedy Graham could go for Trade, Eugenie Sage for the Christchurch rebuild, Gareth Hughes with Energy and Catherine Delahunty with Education.
In good news for Mr Shearer, 43 percent of all voters say he is the best Labour leader. Twelve percent want David Cunliffe, 6.3 percent like Andrew Little, and 5.3 percent choose Grant Robertson.
But the real fight is of course with Prime Minister John Key. We asked voters if they believed Mr Shearer could beat him in 2014.
More than half, 55 percent, say no. Forty-five percent say he could.
And Mr Shearer admitted his definition of beating Mr Key was not getting more votes than National or being a more popular leader - it’s about stitching together a government with the Greens and whomever else.
“If I'm the Prime Minister in 2014, I will have beaten John Key,” says Mr Shearer.