Election 2023: ACT leader David Seymour says never-before-seen coalition on the cards as Govt negotiations continue

ACT leader David Seymour says a "never been done before" agreement is in the works with National and NZ First, confirming a three-way coalition is on the cards.   

The three parties have yet to form a government as negotiations enter their third week.   

Appearing on AM on Monday morning to provide an update on the negotiations, Seymour said he understands people are getting "pretty tired" at the length of the talks. 

But he told AM it's important the three parties get the negotiations right because it will see them go from fierce competitors to collaborators.  

For this reason, Seymour said negotiations are taking their time.  

"Let me just put this in a bit of perspective. We're going to have a government for three years that is going to take on some enormous challenges left by our predecessor," he said.   

"I don't think in two years' time, they're going to be grateful that we got the deal done today or Wednesday or Friday. What people will judge us on is can we clean up the economy, the amount of crime, the amount of social division. Those are the real issues."  

Seymour told AM the goal of the negotiations is for all parties to have an equal footing in the government, which could result in a never-before-seen coalition being on the horizon.  

"That's certainly been the goal of the negotiations, no one's tried that before. So fierce competitors during the election, constructive cooperatives in a cabinet, that's quite a transition," he said.   

"This is three parties coming together in a coalition government. Now, that hasn't been done before. We've had two parties in a coalition with another party sitting off to the side. We've brought together three who were competitors, sometimes fierce competitors."   

This will result in Seymour and New Zealand First leader Winston Peters, who were fierce competitors during the election campaign, sitting around the Cabinet table once the talks are completed.   

"I've been sitting next to Winston Peters quite a lot in the last few weeks and people might be surprised," he said.  

"But look, I think we are ultimately going to have a very cooperative government... we often forget how this started. People voted for change because the last six years have been, frankly, disastrous on almost every front." 

Seymour was asked when the talks could conclude and told AM it "could happen any day" adding negotiations are at an "advanced stage".   

Green MP Chlöe Swarbrick, who was appearing on AM alongside Seymour, said she hopes the incoming government can just "get on with the work" soon.  

"We have a climate crisis and an inequality crisis which New Zealanders feel profoundly every single day," she said.   

"So I'm interested by some of the soundings that we've heard from our incoming Prime Minister, but a little bit gutted to be honest, in the context of particularly the recent unfolding disaster in Gaza that we haven't yet seen the leadership, as I believe all political party leaders have a moral impetus to stand up for."

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