Winston will go with Labour - Delamere

By Heeni Brown

Former New Zealand First MP Tuariki Delamere believes Winston Peters will most likely go with Labour. 
He says Labour, in particular, Jacinda Ardern has a lot of respect for Winston but says National doesn't. 

"I believe Winston Peters will get a lot more respect from Labour with Jacinda and Kelvin and certainly from the Māori MPs. While the Māori MPs' may well disagree with Winston on many things, what they do respect him for is his kaumātua status and having been there for so long."

He says there's a level of arrogance which will come from National ministers who've been there 8-9 years and will think New Zealand First MPs are too inexperienced for cabinet.

"I don't believe any of the Nats respect Winston, his mates like Paul East and them they've long gone and Bill English is the oldest person in terms of time served and Bill arrived when National was trying to get rid of Winston."

He says Metiria Turei made all sorts of insults and allegations against Winston when she was in parliament. 

"When she accused Winston of being a racist, Winston is many things but he is not a racist, so it could be difficult for Winston to have gone with the Greens but it has certainly helped by Metiria no longer being there."

He says Winston does find the Greens difficult to work with and they have insulted him and instead it could be easier to work with National.

"The Greens have this crazy policy that says they can't do anything unless there's 75% support from their membership, so that's problematic cause how long will that take."

Delamere entered politics in 1996, when he won the Tai Rāwhiti electorate. Then in 1998, the coalition between New Zealand First and the National Party began to fall apart, and tensions emerged in the party.  

It was claimed by former ACT MP Rodney Hide, Delamere was planning a coup against New Zealand First leader Winston Peters then Delamere said he was exploring the possibility of a new political party based around the so-called "tight five", New Zealand First's group of Māori MPs (not counting Peters himself).