Monday, October 19, 2020

Mike Hosking: Labour has the place to themselves - what are they going to do?

The upside for Labour is they’ve got the place to themselves.

Which is good for the markets. Markets don’t like the Greens, they don’t like the uncertainty of the Greens, and although the Greens will be there, it will be in a non-confrontational ‘don’t break the china’ kind of way.

This is FPP in all but name, and whether that’s Covid or whether that’s us deciding MMP doesn’t work who would know

But the last government was pure MMP. Three parties that muddled along with handbrakes, standoffs and the lack of progression you’d expect from a lot of behind the scenes compromise.

So the up side is you can do what you want. Down side is, do they know what they want to do really?

Short of a vaccine what actually is their plan? Their campaign was a rock star leader and a lot of selfies.

Yet the economy is in a world of trouble, and a vaccine seems to be their answer.

Before Covid, their year of delivery was anything but. This will have to change or they’ll be toast in 2023.

Another issue to worry about is who the hell is coming to Wellington.

Whether large party or small, history is littered with tales of people you never heard of, people who never in their wildest dreams thought they would be an MP, actually get to be an MP.

That makes new stars, but also produces carnage. Having a large caucus gives you the votes you need, but also the trouble you don’t.

Talent is their other issue. Ardern, Robertson, Woods, Little, Parker and Hipkins, Nash; having more people in your team doesn’t mean the team is any more gifted, just larger.

Mind you, look at Helen Clark. It was her, Cullen, Goff and King. You don’t need a hall full to run the place, but ideally they probably need more than they’ve got.

And here’s the greatest challenge of all. This is their best result in decades. Ardern has taken them from 24 percent to 36 percent to 48 percent. It’s an astonishing record, but this is as good as it gets.

To improve it is impossible. To maintain it is hard work. That’s the test.

What do they say about being at the top?

Big picture, to be truly great you need three terms, with a genuine shot at four. So this chapter is potentially still early days, and these are unprecedented times

So no pressure then.

Mike Hosking is a New Zealand television and radio broadcaster. He currently hosts The Mike Hosking Breakfast show on NewstalkZB on weekday mornings.

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