The general public believes, quite rightly, that the Greens are clean, don't play the unscrupulous games the other parties play and, while they might be a bit 'overly-sincere and excitable', are good people.
OK; the sarcastic bit is over, and tongue has been extracted from cheek. The Greens and Labour are trying for all they're worth to dismiss talk of a deal in Ohariu, but they're fooling no-one. Under the headline Calling BS on the Greens' "deal", John Hartevelt blogs:
The Green Party has taken great offence at the suggestion they are tied up in some kind of agreement with Labour in the Ohariu electorate.
Co-leader Metiria Turei told off the media via Twitter for not getting their side of the story before pushing what the party is now calling "rumours'' of a deal in Ohariu. The party insists there is no deal with Labour. Rather, there is some convoluted position whereby Greens candidate Gareth Hughes doesn't tell people to vote for him or for Labour's Charles Chauvel ... but he does say that incumbent Peter Dunne is a dinosaur and ought to go; that the Greens are concentrating on the party vote; AND that, by the way, they reckon Mr Chauvel is really rather great. Ahem, wink wink, nudge nudge.
Well frankly, I call BS on the Greens' position.
The Greens love to think of themselves as whiter than white. They don't engage in those grubby political shenanigans like the others.
They make a great performance out of criticising and poking fun at other parties playing the system. One of Hughes' defences, for instance, is to point at the deals being done by National and its partners in Epsom and Ohariu as much grubbier than anything they're up to.
But the only difference is that National and its partners are being more open with people about what they want to achieve. Spelling out to voters what they want might annoy some people, but trying to tell it via smoke signals must be worse.
Hartevelt is absolutely right on the money here. The Greens are big on talking about their principles, but sometimes they don't walk the talk; and this is one of those times. Their actions here, which they are trying to distance themselves from are excatly what they have been criticising National and its support parties for.
John Hartevelt concludes:
The fact is, the Greens have a golden opportunity to help replace a centre-right MP they don't like with a leftie liberal who is much, much more to their liking. Hughes is a much higher-profile candidate in Ohariu this time around and he could get a lot further than in 2008 in helping get Chauvel over the line in a race against the Dunne/National bloc.
Hughes and his Green mates need to man up and say what they want. Forget stuffing around with the semantics of "formal approaches'' to Labour, or whatever. Just make it crystal clear to Ohariu voters what's on the line and what they can do about it. They are a party that has gained more out of the MMP system than any other. They probably have the most nuanced understanding of any party about MMP. But they're being wimps.
Someone send the Greens a memo: we're not playing tiddly-winks here.
Dead right. Gareth Hughes and the Green Party need to stop the shadow-boxing here, as do Phil Goff and Charles Chauvel. The contest in Ohariu will be between Chauvel and Dunne, and Hughes and Katrina Shanks will be mere bit players. So let's stop the charade.
The bottom line is this; NO Green Party candidate in ANY electorate wants your candidate vote, so a vote for a Green Party candidate is a wasted vote. And you'd better think carefully before giving the Green Party your party vote either; without winning any electorates (because they don't want to), the Greens will need to get over the 5% thresh-hold to return to Parliament, and if they don't, your party vote might be wasted as well!