Christopher Luxon says his party has signed off policy deals with both Act and New Zealand First and it’s now just a matter of crossing Ts and dotting Is. And, he said, both minor coalition partners had seen and agreed to the deals each has with National.
Discussions are still under way over the shape of the next cabinet, which includes who could take on the role of deputy prime minister. As Toby Manhire writes, that question is not as simple as it may seem – there could be three deputies, maybe, or none at all.
Speaking to reporters outside the Cordis Hotel, Luxon said the only outstanding issues were ministerial responsibilities. “We are in conservations with both party leaders about those positions today and late last night,” he said.
“We have got three parties all agreeing with each other’s policy programmes… and we have now agreed how we are going to operate in cabinet and how we are going to work together.”
Earlier in the day, David Seymour suggested that as the second largest party in government, it would make sense for Act to have more ministerial positions. Luxon wouldn’t say whether Seymour had stepped out of line, but once again invoked “Weet-bix” and suggested the Act leader had been eating too much of it.
The role of deputy prime minister was “largely ceremonial” in New Zealand, said Luxon.
Winston Peters has now arrived at the Cordis and talks with Luxon will be ongoing this afternoon.