There has been some questioning of the vote for the second reading of the Paid Parental Bill Second Reading tonight. The Nats cast the Maori Party votes for them, saying they were againts the Bill. Sue Moroney stood up and made a point of order saying she had an email saying the Maori Party were giving their 3 votes for the Bill. [h/t Blue Leopard on open mike]
Blue Leopard said:
Something very odd just occurred in Parliament in the vote of Sue Moroney’s paid parental leave bill. Sue explained that Flavell is away because the birth of his first grandchild is occurring and National didn’t allow him to vote for this bill in absence on compassionate grounds. This was dubious enough of National, however….
Straight after Moroney had relayed this it was time to vote and when it came to the Maori party vote a National member got up and voted the Maori Party as 3 votes against. In response, Moroney got up and tried to table an email saying that the Maori party was voting for the bill, this process, however, was delayed by the Speaker who got up and said he had to accepted the ’3 against’ vote, and relayed that they had to take the word of whoever said it, because the person must realise it is extremely serious to meddle with another party’s vote.
This is the video of Moroney’s speech. At the end is the vote count and Grant Robertson and Moroney’s points of order querying the Maori Party vote.
Twitter is a buzz with this.
Journalist Katie Bradford tweeted:
National have voted for Maori Party as 3 vote opposed to paid parental leave, despite the party making it clear it supports the bill.
Metiria Turei posted a couple of tweets.
Curious little huddle of National Ministers just outside the Chamber. Will Maori Party correct their vote on PPL? They have 30 mins.
Apparently Pita Sharples was in the middle of that little Nat huddle. I sincerely hope Maori Party correct their vote tomorrow.
This is indeed a very strange happening, and, if the National party whip did cast the Maori Party votes against their wishes, was it a mistake or deliberate?
Labour’s bill to extend paid parental leave has been unexpectedly shot down in Parliament tonight.
National cast the Maori Party’s three votes as being opposed to the measure which would extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks.
However, Sue Moroney, the Labour MP behind the bill, says the Maori Party told her earlier today they would support the bill.
She said she is unsure if there was a late change of heart or if National made a mistake.
The issue looks likely to be addressed in Parliament tomorrow.
Mr Mallard later claimed the Maori Party would be trying to get the vote “corrected.” He said the Maori Party had been told by the Government that the Moroney bill was a confidence issue.
But Leader of House Gerry Brownlee denied that tonight.
National has filibustered on the Moroney bill to ensure the debate on it was delayed until after the Budget on May 16.
National extended paid parental leave in the Budget from 13 weeks to 18 weeks, starting next year.
So it’s looking possible that the Maori Party changed their vote at the last minute – possibly under pressure from the National government. Shameful.