Written By: - Date published: 9:57 am, July 1st, 2013 - 83 comments
Categories: by-election, by-election 2013, labour, mana-party, Maori Issues, maori party, Maori seats - Tags: Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri, parekura horomia
Gotta love the reporting of the Ikaroa-Rawhiti by election. Here for example is John Armstrong:
Little joy for Labour, worse news for Maori parties
No good news for the parties that came first, second and third then? Ummm – how did National do exactly John – and why was that?
For a safe Labour seat, the win was very much in the realm of the ordinary and the predictable.
Well yes, what did you expect?
Labour can take no joy from its candidate, Meka Whaitiri, capturing just 42 per cent of the vote compared with the late Parekura Horomia’s 61 per cent in 2011.
This is bullshit, and it’s a line we’re seeing everywhere in the reporting. Horomia was a long serving and widely loved MP. Whaitiri was standing for the first time, of course you don’t expect her to match Horomia’s personal popularity right out of the gate. When the electorate was formed in 1999 Horomia’s majority was 695. On Saturday Whaitiri’s majority was 1,761, in other words she has made a stronger start than Horomia. That is the fair comparison to make. (Whaitiri also won more of the vote in percentage terms than Horomia in 1999.)
The good news for Labour was Mana pushing the Maori Party into third place. That places a further question mark over whether the Maori Party will return enough MPs to Parliament at next year’s election to help John Key stay in power.
So, good news for Labour and for Mana, contrary to your headline John.
Note the built-in assumption that the role of the Maori party is to support John Key (interestingly, not the National party, but John Key personally). Yes, those days may be over, because the Maori Party looks like it’s finished. The leadership in-fighting has dragged on, and even after this latest rout Sharples has not come out and said that he will step down.
Key unfazed by Maori Party by-election shock
Prime Minister John Key says he is not worried by the Maori Party’s poor showing in the weekend by-election as Labour predicts the minor party will be wiped out at the next election. …
Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples has acknowledged infighting over the leadership contributed to the poor showing and members are expected to discuss the issue this week. “I do acknowledge that and am disappointed it’s been allowed to be aired so publicly,” he told National Radio. …
A Maori Party wipe-out at the next election would rob National of a crucial ally.
I would be surprised if the Maori party recovered from here, and I don’t think that many – apart from the Nats – will miss it when it’s gone.