Dotcom: We'll pull out if unpopular
Internet tycoon Kim Dotcom says his political party will pull out of this year's election if it doesn't reach 5 per cent in pre-election polling.
It comes as Labour leader David Cunliffe and his Green Party counterpart Russel Norman have said they could overrule a potential court order extraditing Dotcom to the United States - though Dotcom says he won't need their help.
Dotcom, who faces copyright and money-laundering charges in the US, has launched the Internet Party to contest this year's election although he is not eligible to stand as he is not a New Zealand citizen.
His party is a long-shot to reach the 5 per cent threshold to get into Parliament or to win an electorate seat, polling at 0 per cent in the latest 3News political poll of 1000 people.
Dotcom, who has been courted by a number of political leaders, said today that if pre-election polling showed his party lacked support it would pull out ahead of the election and throw its weight behind someone else.
"If #InternetParty won't poll 5+% before ballot papers are printed we'll self destruct & put our weight behind party adopting our policies," he tweeted this morning.
Ballot papers close between 20 and 27 days before an election.
Yesterday, Cunliffe and Norman revealed they were not opposed to throwing their weight behind Dotcom's fight against extradition, should they form the next government.
Cunliffe today refused to be drawn further on whether a Labour government would use its powers under the Extradition Act to overturn any order.
The justice minister has the final say on any court-ordered extradition.
"I have not expressed a view on that matter and I'm not briefed to express a view on that matter," he said.
"What I've said is on the face of it, it looks like from the court process underway that the actions of the New Zealand Government may well have been legally flawed in respect of the earlier attempt."
He said it could be there were some legal problems with the way the operations against Dotcom were carried out, although that was for the courts to decide.
If the process was found to be flawed then it created "a very complicated situation".
However, the decision would not be part of any election deal, he said.
"There is a clear separation between the judicial process and any political matters and we have no intention of doing any deals with the Interpret Party prior to the election," Cunliffe said.
Norman told 3News the operations against Dotcom were flawed and the raid on his Coatesville mansion illegal, and they would likely fight to overturn any extradition order.
Dotcom later tweeted he wouldn't need any help from Labour or the Greens.
"I don't need the help of Labour / Greens in my extradition case. John Key & his gang are already doing that with their serial-law-breaking," he wrote.
Dotcom's hearing is set down for July 31.