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Cook Islands Party gains majority in Parliament

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Nov. 18, 2010) – The Cook Islands Party appears to have won a resounding victory in yesterday’s elections, winning at least 15 of the 24 seats.

The Democratic Party won eight with one tied.

While advanced, or postal, votes are still to be counted, our correspondent says it’s unlikely these can reverse the preliminary counts.

The Cook Islands Party deputy leader, Mark Brown, says there were a number of factors contributing to the Democrats’ failure - not least the people’s desire for change.

"But I think the overall thing that led to the demise of the Democratic Party was the Toagate scandal that has besieged them over the last few months since last year, and the fact that they were so fragmented within their own party, and that for the first part of this year they had a minority of six cabinet ministers from within the Democratic party basically running the whole of the government."

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