Iranian-Born Woman Elected to New Zealand Parliament

Doug Mendoza
October 8, 2017

While Prime Minister Bill English's National Party won a 10-point lead over the opposition Labour Party in the September 23 election, neither won enough seats to govern alone and both have been left courting the outspoken Peters to form a government.

Analysts expected the New Zealand dollar to show little reaction to the final results, given that the "special votes" had been widely expected to favour the left-leaning parties based on previous elections.

'We will continue our negotiations in earnest with potential support parties beginning this weekend, ' Ardern told reporters in Auckland.

The Labour-Green bloc picked up two extra seats while National has lost two in the final election result.

This is the third time Peters, 72, has held the balance of power after an election and he has previously formed coalitions with both National and Labour.

New Zealand First said in an emailed statement that his party would hold discussions on Sunday with the National Party at midday and with the Labour Party in the afternoon.

Greens leader James Shaw said his party wanted to be at the heart of a three-way coalition and he had a "polite and cordial relationship" with Peters.

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'I don't think it weakens it significantly at all, ' he said, referring to National's negotiating position.

The final results give National 44.4 percent the total party vote, down from 47 percent in 2014, while Labour has bounced from 25 percent three years to 36.9 per cent in the latest election. Both will need to form a coalition with New Zealand First if they are to form a viable government.

He has opened preliminary coalition talks with both parties in recent days and given himself a deadline of next Thursday to make a decision.

Polling indicated National won 56 seats whereas Labour and Greens who have partnered gained 54 seats combining their 46 and nine seats, respectively.

Ardern has said Labour and NZ First have many "shared values" which include exploring a manned re-entry of the Pike river mine, increasing the minimum wage, improving the education system, and a desire to address the housing crisis.

The National Party has held power for the past nine years. He wants to drastically reduce immigration and stop foreigners from buying farms.

Other reports by GizPress

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