Joe Hendren

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Saturday, October 01, 2005

Brash finally admits he lost

At a press conference this morning National leader Don Brash finally conceded the right lost the 2005 election.

"I formally concede, on behalf of the National Party, that we did not win enough seats to secure a mandate for the programme we put before the people."

I guess two weeks late is better than nothing. I guess there might be some quarters in National none to happy with Brash's performance on election night. While Brash admitted on September 17 that he could not claim a victory, "I'm certainly not conceding defeat". But Brash's claim that he would be working to secure a majority for a National led government was a victory speech in all but name.

On the Monday following the election, the desperation continued:
"While we haven't at this point been able to declare a victory, we can at least say very substantial progress has been made and it's certainly possible that we may yet be able to form a Government. So I'm not feeling depressed at all."

Will Brash now be haunted by the Ghosts of Moore?

Ironically, the speech Brash made today would have been a far better election night speech, in that it admits the obvious point - Helen Clark is in a better position to form a government - yet it still leaves open the possibility of Brash forming a government in the (unlikely) event Helen Clark is not able to do so. Today, Brash finally admitted the obvious.

"Both United Future and New Zealand First have made a commitment to talk first with the larger of the two main parties, so the ball is unambiguously in Helen Clark's court at this stage to try to put together a Labour-led Government."

So unless Brash suddenly gained some benefit from remedial lessons in basic addition - he knew that two weeks ago.

It also ought to be remembered that Brash suggested Labour should donate him a Labour MP as speaker to allow him to form a more stable government. Now that the boot is on the other foot, will Don Brash offer Labour a speaker from his own ranks - or was Don just being a desperate hypocrite?

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