18 months is a long time in politics

Jacinda has received considerable praise for her handling of the Christchurch massacre, and her political capital has never been higher. Being naturally empathetic, it has been relatively easy for her to show a compassionate face in the wake of such horror. But as Chris Trotter points out, the election is still 18 months away, and a lot can (and will) happen in that time. Jacinda is not going to be able to bask in the rosy glow of empathy for much longer. There are a lot of issues out there just waiting to be addressed and they won’t wait forever.

Once we all finally move on, we have the TWG’s proposals to discuss, along with Kiwibuild, education reforms and a decision on mental health. These issues are not going to go away. The government’s response to the TWG report is due in April. Let us hope that they do not use the Christchurch massacre to delay a decision on upcoming tax policy.

Trotter points out, though that Jacinda’s problems may be even bigger than that. quote.

Jacinda Ardern sails serenely above the fray: resplendent in her all-conquering empathy and internationally feted for her heart-stopping hymns of peace and love. Were an election scheduled, then she and her party would be utterly invincible. Unfortunately, for Labour and its leader, the next scheduled general election is still 18 months away.

National?s best hope of getting back in the game is to craft its conduct around the sad but irrefutable truth that powerful emotions cannot be sustained indefinitely. Eventually the electorate?s momentarily numbed hip-pocket nerve will reassert itself. 

What they are counting on, however, is that the Christchurch Mosque Shootings have holed the pocket battleship NZ First below the waterline. In eighteen months it will have long since slipped below the waves. The tried and tested political themes that have lifted the NZ First Party and its leader back into electoral contention: Anti-Maori, Anti-Immigrant, Anti-Muslim; have been rendered electorally toxic. end quote.

What will Winston’s rallying cry in 2020 be, if he can’t use his old platform as he has done in the past? Voters are horrified by the Christchurch shootings but many of them still want immigration controlled and still want Maori seats abolished. quote.

He is much too astute a politician to have missed the brute fact that the Christchurch Shooter, in addition to slaying his Muslim victims, has also killed any chance of NZ First mounting a right-wing populist comeback.

That leaves Labour with only one potential coalition partner ? the Greens. And therein lies Jacinda?s other big problem.

Unless there is a pretty firm laying-on-of-hands within the Greens? caucus ? and soon ? there is a better-than-even chance that in 18 months? time the Greens? own eco-socialist sloop will have joined NZ First at the bottom of the sea.

end quote.

I will not deny that I would love to see this. Far from being an environmental party, the Greens are a bunch of hard-left socialists, campaigning actively against the majority of the citizens of this country and having a particular contempt for white New Zealanders. quote.

It is becoming ominously clear that the ?strategy? of bifurcating the Green Party?s image between its calm and responsible Ministers Outside Cabinet (James Shaw, Julie Anne Genter, Eugenie Sage) and its ?woke? firebrands (Marama Davidson, Golriz Ghahraman) is on the point of sending the whole crew to the bottom. end quote.

I honestly cannot understand why these two are not being reined in. Maybe James Shaw is allowing them to self-destruct, but there is a strong chance that their toxic brand will take the entire party with them. quote.

A radical environmental party committed to making climate change the nuclear-free moment of this generation is one thing; but a party dedicated to challenging the white supremacist assumptions of New Zealand?s settler state, is another.

end quote.

Most people of European descent are not white supremacists, but are being made to feel that way. The hard left faction of the Greens is campaigning against the majority of the country’s voter base. quote.

The arithmetic of MPP is as brutal as it is simple. If the 2020 General Election is reduced to a straightforward scrap between Labour and National: a battle fought without the distractions of minor parties; then the most likely outcome is a National victory. Labour?s vote, minus 7 percent (NZ First + Greens) will, almost certainly, leave it with a smaller share of the Party Vote than National. end quote.

The strange thing about 25 years of MMP is that most of the small parties have been and gone. Jacinda has ruled out lowering the MMP threshold, at least for now, so we face the real possibility that we will only have 2 political parties after the 2020 election. quote.

That wouldn?t be the outcome if the general election was held now. Even without the support of NZ First and the Greens, the Labour Party of late-March 2019 would carry all before it.

Bowalley Road end quote

It is particularly depressing to realise that wearing a hijab and giving people hugs could have won an election for Jacinda, but there we are. Luckily for the country, there will be a lot of other issues to consider by the time the next election rolls around.