It's only a matter of six weeks since John Key announced the date of the 2011 General Election, and ruled out any post-election deal with Winston Peters. Phil Goff told the Herald at the time:
Labour leader Phil Goff also believed Mr Key was arrogant for ruling out NZ First prior to voters having their say.
"I'm going to let the voters make the decision."
Roll forward six weeks to yesterday. What did Phil Goff do? We'll let the Radio New Zealand tell you:
The Labour Party leader has ruled out working with the Independent MP Hone Harawira after the election.
Mr Harawira quit the Maori Party because of differences with his colleagues, and is considering setting up a new political party.
If the MP is re-elected in November this year, Labour leader Phil Goff says his party would not enter talks with him on forming a Government.
Mr Goff says Mr Harawira would not be a reliable coalition partner.
However, he is not ruling out working with New Zealand First leader Winston Peters if he returns to Parliament.
Yes, dear readers. This is the same Phil Goff who, on 2 February 2011 called John Key "arrogant" for doing exactly the same thing to Winston Peters as he is doing to Hone Harawira. But remarkably, he's still hedgeing his bets on Winston; oh dear!
Is it any wonder that he's even copping flack from his own side? Imperator Fish writes:
I'm willing to cut the new leader of a political party a bit of slack. Even if they have been around the political scene for years.
But I can barely listen to or read a thing Phil Goff says without groaning. He really needs to be taken aside and given the hard word about gun safety. How can anyone shoot themselves in the foot so many times?
The gruesome impact of today's self-inflicted wound is graphically documented here.
Labour leader Phil Goff has ruled out a deal with Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira or any party he leads.''I don't believe he would be a suitable coalition partner,'' Goff said.But Goff's happy to work with Winston Peters, despite Peters being at least as widely reviled as Harawira. The main difference between the two is that Harawira speaks from the heart. He may be unreliable and unstable, but you know where you stand with Hone.
He said Harawira was not reliable and had expressed some extreme policies that Goff found personally offensive.
"I don't believe you could form a stable government on a relationship with Hone Harawira."
Does anyone remember how Goff reacted when John Key ruled out working with Winston Peters? I recall accusations of hubris and arrogance. Goff in turn said that he was prepared to work with anyone.
Well done to Imperator Fish for having the gumption to say what so many on the left are clearly thinking. But will anyone in Labour listen?
When Helen Clark stood aside, there was an accord formed, and under that accord, Phil Goff was given the Labour leadership until after the 2011 election. Goff has made an absolute meal of this latest situation by contradicting himself. If he is the best that Labour can offer, the Red Team has a real dilemma.
Phil Goff might want the public to make the decision when it comes to Winston Peters. The big problem with that is that at the same time, the public will be making a decision on Phil Goff. We have a feeling that he is going to cut a very lonely figure late on the evening on 26 November when the Goff Accord ends.