Government divided over possible ban on smoking in home

A Labour MP is floating the idea of banning smoking in homes.

A document released on Wednesday shows such extreme measures may be needed if the Goverment wants to hit its target of making New Zealand smokefree by 2025.

Politicians are considering how to reduce smoking in cars carrying children. If it were up to Labour's Louisa Wall, it would be banned  - immediately.

"Children don't have a choice," she told Newshub.

The ban wouldn't stop there, she explains.

"I'd like to see smoking, from my perspective, banned at home."

The public is split on the idea, with some telling Newshub smoking is a no-no in the house and around children, while others say people should be able to make the choice.

But Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says that will not happen on his watch.

"That sort of invasion of people's privacy we are not going to support. The idea of interfering with people's homes that way is simply wrong."

He will get on board with a ban in cars - but the home, he says, is different.

"You can go into a different room in the home or outside on the balcony. Inside the car you've got no option."

Fresh calls for smoking solutions come as Parliament has been told yet again that Smokefree 2025 is not on track - all signs point to us failing.

Mr Peters has had enough of raising the price to try and get people to quit.

"Personally, if you ask me, we've got to stop running around and hammering poor people, working people," he says.

He's also called into question future tax rises

"The reality is you can't turn around in five seconds flat," he said when asked if the Government will implement an excise tax rise in January.

"The real question is what's going to happen in 2020? I think you could say that's a very moot point now."

The coalition partners seem to be at completely opposite ends of the smoking spectrum.

It's extremely unlikely the Government would try to push through a ban on homes. Jenny Salesa, the Minister in charge, says such a ban is not currently being considered.

A spokesperson from the Prime Minister's office was at pains to point out this was just the personal view of Ms Wall.

To round it out, a Labour source told Newshub the Labour caucus would not support the ban.

This is dangerous territory for the Government. Labour is forever trying to shake the nanny state label, the perception that the party interferes too much in people's lives.

This would play right into that criticism.