Patrick Gower: Winston Peters deepens 'utu' with legal action over pension leak

OPINION: Winston Peters search for "utu" is now clearer than ever before.

Not only has he dispatched National into Opposition - now he has targeted them with legal action over leaking his pension details.

It will now be obvious to most New Zealanders that there was way too much bad blood between National and Winston Peters for them to form a Government together. 

Just after the election, Newshub broke the story from sources inside New Zealand First that Winston Peters was out for revenge for National trying to get him out of Parliament. 

National had launched a serious attack on Peters to drive New Zealand First out of Parliament:  successfully targeting him in Northland, and trying but failing to get them beneath the 5 percent threshold. 

The strategy was called "cut out the middle man".

Winston Peters clearly believes the leak was part of this.

No wonder National got nowhere in the coalition negotiations.

In the end, National has nobody to blame but itself. It took the high-risk strategy of trying to eliminate Peters - and it failed.

Now it is facing the consequences: life in Opposition and ritual humiliation from Winston Peters.

Patrick Gower is Newshub political editor.