Rodney Hide has said that having Maori seats on the Auckland Supercity council would go completely against his party’s principles. So, he would refuse to be the Minister of Local Government taking a Bill through the House that includes Maori seats on the Supercity. He would resign from his portfolios and vote against the legislation. I don’t agree with them but I can respect Hide for being willing to sacrifice his personal power for his principles (as reactionary as they are).
Of course, the other point of view is that Hide is just being a bully like always. He’s bullied the Supercity though against the will of the people of Auckland, he’s blocked any real public input into the Supercity they’re having foisted on them, and now he’s trying to hold the Nats to ransom to ensure he gets exactly what he wants.
But what of Pita Sharples and Tariana Turia? Are they willing to put their jobs on the line for their principles? If the Bill does not have Maori seats, will Sharples say ‘I cannot as Minister of Maori Affairs, be part of a government that would not give Maori a voice on the Supercity’? Would he resign on principle too?
Nah. Once again, Sharples and Turia will be happy to be part of a government that works against their people’s interests. That way they get to keep their baubles.
Actually, that’s a little unfair, Sharples is delivering on one thing. He can say ‘sure, the government I’m a member of has taken away Maori workers’ rights, it has taken contrary views to my party’s policy on education, ACC, health, Matariki, cigarettes, the SAS, and the environment but I’m staying on so I can get the flag I choose to flutter in the breeze on a bridge for one day a year’.
Whose mana is enhanced by this episode thus far?