Waatea News Column: Why Shane Jones is NZ First’s only chance to return to Parliament


Many political writers and commentators have destroyed their careers on the rocks of writing NZ First off.

Winston is the ultimate political survivor, but I’m going to go there and state the only way Winston returns to Parliament is if Shane Jones wins Northland because I believe the cultural tide has run out for Winston and that NZ First will come under the 5% MMP threshold this election for a couple of specific reasons.

1 – Jacinda:
She is a phenomenon. She has managed to reach out to every Kiwi over the lockdown and has connected with them at a time when they felt vulnerable. NZ First has no response to that new political loyalty to Jacinda. We are a Nation crying out for compassion and all Winston has as a reply is a sly laugh and a quick wink that doesn’t capture the emotional needs of the NZ voting population.

2 – No Immigration hot buttons
With the borders closed, Winston can’t go to the usual divisive hot button of immigration to bolster his electoral profile.

3 – No longer a Kingmaker or Queen maker
But ultimately the reason NZ First will fall under 5% is because Winston’s main leverage of being the King or Queen maker no longer exists. The polls tell us that Jacinda can win on her own, so the only Queen Winston will be anointing is Judith Collins.

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I know that many who have written Winston off lived to regret it, but I think it’s over for NZ First because Winston hasn’t ever faced a pandemic and the unique cultural currents that event has brought into play.

This election will be an exercise in gratitude to Jacinda for navigating us through a global pandemic, there’s no place for Winston in that political loyalty.

Shane Jones won’t just be delivering for his own political future, he has to save Winston’s legacy as well.

First published on Waatea News.


  1. “Shane Jones is being picked to rescue Winston peters” – that is a possible chance yes I agree.but on the election day NZF always polls far higher than before the election; – so we shall see.

  2. Winston’s fatal mistake was his failure to honour, respect and truly value his role as Deputy PM of Aotearoa. Instead, he took his eyes off the road ahead for all of us, and took time out to bring his personal court case regarding pre-election leaks of his private information. That case could have waited, until his time of service as Deputy PM was ended.

    While he was taking time out to run that case, the PM was both under fire at home and had matters to attend to overseas, IIRC. In Winston’s absence, Shane gained ascendency, doing his little “You red-necks, red-necks, red-necks!” haka on the parliamentary steps. Somehow, Shane never looked back from that, and Winston never quite regained his footing.

    Message to future MPs: Please keep your personal stuff out of parliamentary time. You have a tremendous responsibility to us all, and we are paying you to respect that!

  3. So here is the thing.
    Winston has successfully depicted himself as untrustworthy, unlikeable and deliberately obstructive for political gain. In other words a self-interested politician. He could have been an elder statesman rich with gravitas. That would have earned him points.
    And as for SJ? No way. We share the same iwi, but no way would I vote for him. Jacinda has set a bar for warmth and integrity he will be ablenever rise to. Not in him. Zero mana.

    • Jones is a buffoon and not worthy of being an MP.
      But like in American, where you had the choice of Trump or (mass murder) Hilary. And next Trump versus a man who daren’t even be seen in public and can’t remember who his wife is etc etc.
      i.e. The devil or the deep blue sea.

      Well in Northland we have the same, an unelectable buffoon (Jones) or an absolutely bigger idiot than Trump. Have a look at Matt Kings’ two (quickly removed) on-line statements, especially the one about the ‘Coup by Jacinda’ immediately after our last national election.
      He’s about as bad as Trump.
      So Jones has a decent chance in Northland, which is a shame.
      I’ll have to hold my nose and vote AGAINST the bigger-idiot, Matt King.

  4. I still thank you’ve missed a major reason for NZ First’s demise.

    A HUGE part of their voters are OAP’s.
    The second largest group of OAP’s are Brits.
    TraitorKey lost legal battles in overseas courts about the illegal actions of NZ taking pensions off UK pensioners, which they had PAID INTO. Which should thus make them free of/from NZ pension interference. But (most probably) because it’s about $100M p.a NZ Govt choice to ignore the law.
    Jacinda and Winston rightly gave TraitorKey a panning in Parliament over this illegal action and promised to correct this if they came to power.
    Now they’re in power, DADA/nothing.
    AS Jacinda isn’t as reliant on OAPs as NZF are, I suggest this had a major effect on NZF low polling.

    About 5 mins into this http://www.nzpensionprotest.com/Home/letters-from-wellington/pm-jacinda-ardern

  5. I won what is now, Northland Electorate:
    (1) In my first term – because I was seen as a conservative champ – former red squad commander and police inspector
    (2) My second term I was suffering from allegations I was an Arms Dealer – but I won.
    (3) Third term I was consistently clashing with Bolger e.g. I rolled the PM when I (somehow) garnered support for National to embrace the Labour No Nukes policy (My electorate tabled the motion at national conference which rolled McKinnon. Birch and Bolger).
    YET I still won Hobson now Northland?

    Because you could put a dog in that seat wearing a blue collar and – its all over mate.

    Shane does not have a blue collar

  6. The PGF via Shane has shovelled money into Northland, “but are they grateful? No, the’re spiteful and the’re hateful”…apols to Randy Newman.

    Labour’s Willow Jean Prime got 8000 votes last time and she will be campaigning. So, can Jones beat Matt King? Long shot.

  7. The final nail in Winston’s coffin was his criticism of Labour’s very strict lockdown, (you know – the one that saved our necks). A semi-lockdown hasn’t turned out too well for Australia has it Winston.

  8. Winston pissed off the NZF center right voters ,
    when he went with Labour instead of National in 2017.

    Now he has pissed off the center left voters,

    For 3 years he has been a total handbrake on meaningful and progressive social reform . Yes to the TPPA,No progressive tax reform (including no capital gains tax ).no meaningful benefit reform, no subsidies on electric cars, no cameras on fishing boats and so on .Its a very long list of policy shut downs . Just ask James Shaw, he has not been happy . King Winston has been the gatekeeper of legislative sovereignty for too long, which is akin to having the National Party in the cabinet room to approve policy .

    He also has around 10 rental properties and along with many other property rich MP’s it appears he had no intention of diminishing his own wealth with a capital gains tax.

    Bomber is right when he mentions NZF’s key election strategy , the red haze of immigration . Normally this would work well for conservative older white 1/4 acre pavlova paradise kiwis who hate the idea of endless immigrants clogging up Auckland roads and pushing house prices beyond the reach of ordinary kiwi families .

    However in a covert 19 world with no immigration , he is out of ammo . Oh dear .Its just not that relevant at the moment . The bad boys of Brexit may still entertain us with some shock jock dirt media but where is the substance ? Yawn .Outa ammo.

    I don’t have the inside running on the Northland race , and through Shane Jones he may still limp over the line , but if Jones fails its Goodbye Mr Chips .
    Winston needs to go .
    Curbing the extremities of neoliberalism as promised ,he has not .
    Wake up Winnie ,its not 1963.
    The planet can and must have better .
    But I do like the suits …….
    Maybe he could rebrand with United Future and they could all wear bow ties .


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