I’m afraid that I don’t know much about Nanaia Mahuta. In fact probably way less than I should have, bearing in mind that she stayed in the Labour and didn’t decamp over the Foreshore and Seabed.
But there was this post “in support of nanaia” at the Hand Mirror that I found interesting so I’m quoting a large part of it here concentrating on the person (warning it looks like stargazer doesn’t like capitals..).
so the big thing for labour party members over the next couple of weeks is the caucus leadership vote. it’s certainly been getting a lot of media coverage, and that can only be a good thing. i’ve just watched the closeup thing online, with the three davids & i thought they all did really well.
but it needs to be said – these are all white men. very capable white me to be sure, but it’s still a pity that there aren’t any women in the race for the leadership. that’s a problem that the party needs to be concerned about – the development and promotion of it’s very capable women MPs.
the only woman we’ve seen mentioned at all is nanaia mahuta, who will be deputy leader if mr cunliffe is successful. now i do know nanaia reasonably well, seeing as hauraki-waikato is in our region and i come across her pretty often. i think she’s an excellent choice. she has experience and she’s extremely capable. she’s been a minister and performed well in that role (i dealt with her both as minister of customs and minister of youth affairs, and found her to be helpful and willing to listen). she was on labour’s front bench. she’s also great in the house. i saw her in action in her local community at the funeral of te arikinui dame te atairangikaahu. she was seemed to be managing affairs and working extremely hard.
nanaia has had a low profile in the last couple of years and that’s by choice. she had suffered the loss of a baby in 2008, but carried on to fight the 2008 election and retain her seat. she had taken the risk of not being on the party list in 2008, so that she could have a clear mandate from her electorate. that she got, even though the maori party had taken all but one of the other maori seats, that of parkura horomia. since then, she has given birth to a lovely baby boy, and it’s not surprising that she didn’t want the pressure of the front bench just after giving birth.
she’s retained her seat again in 2011 with a bigger majority. she’s now ready to take up the role of deputy leader, and when it comes to merit, she has plenty of it. she’s another person who is full of integrity, she’s not afraid to speak out, and she has won some real gains for her constituents. aside from the fact that i would naturally be really happy to see a woman of colour in such a position, i can also say that i’d be really happy to see this particular person in the position. she fully deserves it and i’m sure will do really well if she were to get the job.
From memory, the deputy leader is a position voted by caucus position, the most that the elected leader can do is to indicate their preference. So she can be elected regardless if David Cunliffe gets in.
Of course there is the view of John Tamihere. Stuff reports
Labour’s Nanaia Mahuta has hit back at John Tamihere, after the former MP criticised her selection as running mate for David Cunliffe’s leadership bid.
Tamihere said Cunliffe picked Mahuta only because she is female and Maori.
“The only thing she’s lacking is she doesn’t have a limp. Then he would have got the disabled [vote] too. That’s the truth of it and that’s the way it smacked as soon as I saw it.”
Mahuta told the NZ Herald Tamihere was a failed politician.
“John’s comments show male parochialism is alive and well in Maoridom. If John Tamihere thinks that Maori women should be in the home cooking kai, then he’s wrong,” Mahuta said.
Despite her grief at the deceased mirage that was her Act party, Cactus Kate weighed in with
And no race does scrapping better in New Zealand than Maori. When they are fighting each other everyone else should duck for cover.
John Tamihere (aka JT) tried to be clever in attacking Nanaia Mahuta. Mahuta has a reputation for being a slow moving born-to-rule slug. Her political career has been marred by underachievement followed by personal tragedy to a small hiatus due to the birth of her child. JT has a reputation for being a mercurially talented but loose talkback boofhead.
Thanks to JT she’s now lost that rep and is in the game. With a “cop this beatch”. Good on her.
From that I would guess that she only knows Maori from stereotypes. Mind you you’d have to worry about CK these days. I last saw her on this site trying to hock off a slightly overused Don Brash and without a hefty cash
bribe transfer fee as an inducement to take him off Act’s hands.
I still know as little about Nanaia as I did at the start. But I don’t think that Nanaia needs much defending – she can do it herself. Certainly from John Tamihere who I consider is a stupid buffon who isn’t worth listening to for any political advice. After all who else would be idiotic enough to do interviews with Ian Wishart?