The Māori Party and the National Party

Written By: - Date published: 7:43 am, May 13th, 2021 - 113 comments
Categories: jacinda ardern, Judith Collins, Maori Issues, maori party, Maori seats, Parliament, racism - Tags:

There were dramatic scenes in Parliament yesterday.  Judith Collins chose to again attack Jacinda Ardern about the He Puapua report.

I watched the video and my initial reaction was concern that Jacinda was showing human weakness and frailty in trying to address a very complex issue with compassion.  My second reaction was admiration that Jacinda was showing human weakness and frailty in trying to address a very complex issue with compassion.

In one sense she is not suited for conventional politics.  Occasionally, actually quite often, you watch her and get a very strong sense that her words and her actions are based on what she is thinking and feeling, not what she has calculated will gain the best political advantage.

Long may that continue.

Here is the video:

For Judith Collins and National, clearly all they wanted to engage in was some good old dog whistle race baiting.

Equally clearly the Māori Party has had enough.  This question from Debbie Ngarewa-Packer to Ardern clearly signifies this:

Debbie Ngarewa-Packer: Can you please give your view on whether the Leader of the Opposition’s continued attack on Māori is racist?

SPEAKER: There’s a couple of things about that question. One of them is the “you” in it and the other is, I think, asking for a view on a matter which is well outside the Prime Minister’s responsibility.

Mallard’s response was technically pristinely correct but clearly unsatisfactory to the Māori Party.

The next question and answer brought a tear to my eye.  My father Don Presland was the swing voter on the 1977 Mangere selection committee that gave David Lange his start in parliamentary politics, and Lange so impressed me as a teenager that I decided to become a lawyer.

Hon Judith Collins: Does she agree with former Prime Minister David Lange, who stated that “Democratic Government can accommodate Māori political aspiration in many ways. … What it cannot do is acknowledge the existence of a separate sovereignty. As soon as it does …, it isn’t a democracy.”?

Rt Hon JACINDA ARDERN: I have no doubt that if David Lange had the ability to remark on what we are doing as a Government in the area, for instance, of health reform, he would applaud it. What the member characterises as separatism I characterise as partnership, and it is just unacceptable, I would hope, for any member in this House to stand by while we have a health system or systems across the board that lead to different outcomes for different people in New Zealand. Our job as Government is to make sure that we see opportunity and the potential of all New Zealanders realised, and our current systems do not always achieve that.

Just remember, Collins’ questions are scripted, Ardern’s answers are from the heart.

It is clear that Rawiri Waititi by this stage had had enough.

Rawiri Waititi: Point of order. Mr Speaker, I seek your guidance and advice. Over the past two weeks, there has been racist propaganda and rhetoric towards tangata whenua. That not only is insulting to tangata whenua but diminishes the mana of this House.

SPEAKER: I thank the member for his point of order. I think I relatively ineloquently made comments in this area last week, and that is that we are a House of Representatives, that there are a broad range of views within the House, and part of my responsibility is to allow those views to be aired. Many things in the time that I’ve been a member of Parliament have resulted in discomfort to other members because the views are very different, and there are almost certainly some views that were expressed earlier in my career that would now be regarded as out of order for the reasons that the member has expressed. In my view, we are not at that point now.

Waititi clearly did not accept the response and then raised a new point of order.  The accompanying Hansard is something that you could only read in Aotearoa New Zealand:

Rawiri Waititi: Point of order.

SPEAKER: I am going to warn the member that—no, the member will sit down when I stand up—litigation or relitigation of points of order or decisions on points of order is in itself disorderly, and now that the member has been warned, it would make it deliberately disorderly. So I am asking the member to make sure that if he has a point of order, it is a fresh and different one.

Rawiri Waititi: Fresh and different point of order, Mr Speaker. When it comes to views of indigenous rights and indigenous peoples, those views must be from those indigenous peoples for the indigenous rights of our people. They can’t be determined by people who are not indigenous. So what I am asking, e hika mā, to this House—tēnā koe e te Pirīmia—is that if we find this attitude acceptable in this House, the constant barrage of insults to tangata whenua, then I find this House in disrepute and—

SPEAKER: Order! Order!

Rawiri Waititi: —Te Paati Māori—

SPEAKER: Order! Order! The member’s mike’s off, so he will resume his seat. [Member performs haka] Order! The member will now leave the Chamber.

Rawiri Waititi withdrew from the Chamber.

I think a trip down memory lane will put the implications of this development into perspective.

Remember John Key?  He thought that a long standing and respectful relationship with the Māori Party was in National’s best interests.  Probably the motivation was to drive a stake into Māori support for Labour but the quality of the political calculation could not be questioned.

The election results in 2008 went like this.  National won 58 seats, Act won 5 seats and Peter Dunne won his seat.  Although they did not need to for insurance National signed up a confidence and supply agreement with the Māori Party.

The agreement was not without consequence.  As I noted in an earlier post the fifth Labour Government had issues with the UN convention on the Rights of Indigenous People, which He Puapuaseeks to implement, and refused to sign it.  National was persuaded by Pita Sharples however and decided to support the convention.  They were interesting times.  As I said earlier:

The fifth Labour Government did not want to sign the treaty.  In 2007 then Minister of Maori Affairs Parekura Horomia said this:

There are four provisions we have problems with, which make the declaration fundamentally incompatible with New Zealand’s constitutional and legal arrangements.” Article 26 in particular, he said, “appears to require recognition of rights to lands now lawfully owned by other citizens, both indigenous and non-indigenous. This ignores contemporary reality and would be impossible to implement.”

But National reversed the decision and supported the convention.  At the UN Maori Party leader and part of Government Pita Sharples said this:

New Zealand’s support for the Declaration represents an opportunity to acknowledge and restate the special cultural and historical position of Maori as the original inhabitants – the tangata whenua – of New Zealand. It reflects our continuing endeavours to work together to find solutions and underlines the importance of the relationship between Maori and the Crown under the Treaty of Waitangi. Its affirmation of longstanding rights supports and safeguards that ongoing relationship and its proclamation of new aspirations gives us all encouragement and inspiration for the future.

In 2011 National won 59 seats.  Act gained one, the coiffured one from Ohariu hung on and the Māori Party won three.  Again the Māori Party provided Key with insurance.

And in 2014 National had 60, Act had one, the coiffured one had a seat and the Maori Party had two seats.  Yet again the Māori Party was signed up for confidence and supply and Key got on with things.

In each election, when National appeared to be ascendant the Māori Party gave them security.  Without the Māori Party National would have needed no losses of MPs due to any sort of problem and to rely on the extremist ACT MPs to get things done.

The chances of a National Maori Party coalition now?

Absolutely zero.

Short term National may get a slight bump in the polls.  This is probably their only goal.  Any momentum would be welcome for them.  It also cannot hurt the Māori Party and I expect they also may get a bump in the polls.

Long term?  Māori have never been fans of National and this will only get worse.  And instead of having a party that is able through deft tactical negotiations score some gains for Māori in consideration of confidence and supply now the phone will be off the hook.

And the country will be the big loser.  This sewer based ravaging of our complex and repairing relations with Tangata Whenua will set us all back.

113 comments on “The Māori Party and the National Party ”

  1. Gosman 1

    The issue is that there are important matters involving what it means by sovereignty in NZ that certain groups don't want to even discuss due to it being labelled "Racist" to oppose one viewpoint. Some of the comments from the Maori Party were ridiculous – Only Maori should discuss matters involving Maori. Shall we apply the same principle to non-Maori?

  2. Sanctuary 2

    The biggest problem is that Judith Collins and the Maori Party are both deeply unserious about governing and are both pursuing the same agenda.

    The Maori Party is loving it – they get wear fancy dress and do theatrical hakas and generally be idiots mouthing off useless bumper sticker slogans about colonisation and play to their base.

    Collins is loving it – she gets to wear her best twinset and pearls, clutch them theatrically and generally be an idiot mouthing off about bizarre conspiracy theories and play to her base.

    The trouble is, neither is the slightest bit interested in actually doing anything adult about running the country.

    • greywarshark 2.1

      Oh Sanctuary I fear you are right.

      Jason W has to be aware that the more he goes on about racism in Parliament the more he feeds into that agenda himself. Balance, man!

      The Parliament and our democracy, such as it is, does allow citizens to have a place in running the country. Strengthen and widen the Maori aspect, with the occasional tilt at Pakeha and senseless restrictions, but always with an eye to keep the democracy alive and the country's political system intact. Rebelling and mouthing all the time won't do that.

      The great Maori leaders of the past were serious and behaved seriously. It is not great for Maori to make yourself into a sideshow; leave that to stand-up comics.
      Māori Party co-leader Rawiri Waititi says a barrage of rhetoric in Parliament is fuelling racist comments in wider society.

      Mr Waititi might be interested in looking at pertinent Franklin D. Roosevelt thoughts and quotes about what is effective for good political achievements. This quote is about making a political leader do something he/she thinks is right and necessary but that his base would not agree with.

      "After his election in 1932, FDR met with Sidney Hillman and other labor leaders, many of them active Socialists with whom he had worked over the past decade or more. Hillman and his allies arrived with plans they wanted the new President to implement. Roosevelt told them:

      I agree with you, I want to do it, now make me do it."

  3. Byd0nz 3

    The good thing about this is if the new look Maori Party become king maker in a future election, it's doubtful they would follow the old look Maori Party and go with the National dinosaur Party.

    • Gosman 3.1

      Then it is unlikely to be the King maker. To be one you have to choose.

      • Tricledrown 3.1.1

        John Key and Jim Bolger worked with Maori the National Party rode high in the polls .Shipley has got a bone to gnaw away at while dog whistling up divisiveness.

        National has no partners in reality under MMP ACT is just stealing votes of Nationals right wing because Nationals leadership is woeful.National strategists set out to destroy NZfirst and now the Maori Party.

        No mates National still don't understand how to work MMP.

      • Tricledrown 3.1.2

        Gosman don't expect National to be so divisive when they need 3 or 4 seats to form a govt.They would drop Collins and put in a leader like Key or Bolger to get a majority.Luxton.

        Look at UK conservatives they would sell anyone any principals to get their hands on power.

      • CrimzonGhost 3.1.3

        Yes it will be King-Maker if it means Labour and Greens need them onboard to get over the 61-Seat line. I see future political momentum in NZ being towards Greens …they're only going to rise & we could well see ACT supplanting National as main opposition.

  4. Ad 4

    Come back Bridges all is forgiven.

    • weka 4.1

      snort. You think he wouldn't be running similar lines? Not as brash as Collins granted, but it's still the same Trumpesque shit in both of them.

      • Ad 4.1.1

        Like Winston Peters he would be very hard to critique as anti-Maori. I don't have volumes of pity for Shane Reti though.

        If anyone in National had half a brain they would get out in front of the constitutional debate before the tramlines are set on the way to our 2040 bicentennary. It's where they miss Chris Finlayson.

        Even so, as other commentators have noted, Mallard needs to be replaced, and after the Budget is as good a time as any. Chop chop Ardern.

        • Nic the NZer

          I don't see Mallard doing anything wrong here. Waititi knew he would be leaving when he started the haka and shortly after he had vacated. There is no claim Mallard moderated unfairly being made.

          I think Pita Sharples would have taken the opportunity to set Collins straight on her debate points in similar circumstances.

          • Ad

            Probably the response-haka was over the top, but using the word racist within that debate was I felt reasonable and not unparliamentary. He should have let it go.

            • Nic the NZer

              Maybe I missed something from last week but I can't find any perspective where Collins questions in the clip are racist in their nature.

              Mallard seemed to agree that the questions were not racist either, but I guess you don't agree with that position. But Mallard didn’t ask for a retraction simply that Collins questioning could proceed.

              • weka

                Mallard went to a fair bit of trouble to say that NZ parliament isn’t as racist as it used to be, is still racist but within the norms of current society, without having to actually call Collins racist. I don’t think he was sitting there thinking the questions aren’t racist, it’s pretty clear that Collins is both speaking against Te Tiriti and doing so in a way that promotes prejudice. She’s being more circumspect than say Brash but the agenda is the same.

                • Nic the NZer

                  I can't actually believe that is how the opposition leaders going to be perceived (outside of strongly partisan circles). They are clearly putting the narrative that this bifurcates NZ law in some way along racial lines and that is not really true, but thats quite clearly not a racist statement.

                  It seems to me the Maori party saw this line of questioning coming and prepared a counter narrative to draw media attention, while also having the wrong picture about how racially charged the questions would be.

                  I would previously have expected the Maori party representatives to be much better considered in their approach. If I considered these people to represent me I would be unimpressed, maybe other constituents understand it differently however.

                  Mallard also firmly identified that this line of questions didn't cross any lines, unlike the approach of making the same point of order again would have, and that the Debbie Ngarewa-Packer question was completely a question of applied amateur phychology and the Haka merely a disruption.

                  • weka

                    Didn’t cross any lines in the system that Pakeha invented and control. The line is an Overton window, Mallard talked about how things have changed over time and at this time in NZ this is where the line lies.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Ok, so on which question should Mallard have asked Judith to retract and apologise for making it? If you were the speaker?

                    • weka

                      I don't know. But Mallard being hampered by Speaker protocol doesn't mean that racism isn't happening. I've explained twice now why that is.

            • bwaghorn

              The response haka shows Waititi understands that a minnow party needs coverage and hes going to get ,more power to him I say.

          • Robert Guyton

            Over the top is the only path available to Maori in the House now.

        • weka

          I have no idea if Collins is personally racist (eg like Brash), or if she’s just using the opportunity to further Trumpian politics.

          I don’t think it would be that hard for Maori in parliament to take Bridges to task if he were leader although I expect it might be done differently

          • Gosman

            Maori in Parliament are not taking David Seymour to task and he has asked similar questions to Collins in Parliament.

            • Incognito

              The operative word here is “similar”.

              • Gosman

                Are you stating David Seymour is expressing opposition to the He Puapua report in a manner that is not racially divisive? People should be applauding him if that is the case.

                • Incognito

                  Why are you asking me? You should ask yourself what you were stating in your own comment. I was merely pointing out the operative word for you so that you can explain to yourself what you meant in/with your comment.

                  • Gosman

                    Let me ask you directly then. Do you think Maori in Parliament should take David Seymour to task for his questions around He Puapua and how would they go about doing that?

                    • Incognito

                      Why do you keep asking all those leading questions here? I’m not here to play your silly games. I’m here to point out the weaknesses in your comments, the ambiguities, and the cognitive dissonances. It is an age-old rhetorical trick to ask a question and then answer it yourself: Why is X? Let me tell you why is X or non-X for that matter. Et cetera. You don’t comment here with an open mind and to debate in good faith. That’s an observation, no more, no less. Make of that what you will.

  5. Stuart Munro 5

    I wonder to what extent, if any, these shenanighans in the house are the epiphenomena of larger movements within our society. If they are not, they waste the time that ought to be going into better governance. A bit of stirring in the house is all the MP need to continue to exist, mining the long vein of discontent that results from decades of misgovernance and rampant inequality. The basis of National's continued existence remains mysterious, but it seems to involve spite.

    • Tricledrown 5.1

      Keep the peasants divided and poor is Nationals policy.

    • Foreign Waka 5.2

      It may not be until now, bandwagon has been officially unveiled …. this will be another what came first the chicken or the egg and some will use the display as a perfectly OK way to spread the same and ballooning from there every critical voice might get to hold one's peace.

      And may I add, if no questions are allowed and if any are asked agro is being dished out, sanctioned by the sitting PM, it would be a very sad day.

  6. Foreign Waka 6

    In all that no one, absolutely no one has asked about the report and what it contains. Whether there are serious questions about the democracy in this country and may I stretch so many lost their lives for. Obviously, not even worth a whimper.

    Mission accomplished, the peasants are being kept in the dark, obviously its too much for the average punter. Mental health etc. (sarc)

    Oh well, this kind of non performance goes hand in hand with the issue of child poverty, slowly getting the focus away of recovering any money of shareholders who have squirreled away millions that are now being paid for by increased tax or decreasing wages in the public sector and the wider working population.

  7. WeTheBleeple 7

    I think the 'shenanigans' of the Maori party were useful so that attention was drawn to the contemptuous disrespect seething beneath the skin of one Judith Collins.

    • Foreign Waka 7.1

      Funny that your name is a play on words that display's the notion that the people have actually a say. Well, in a real democracy you have different points of view and discussions of those in the open so that, if the people have their say in the way of voting, it can be done informed.

      “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

      Voltaire, 1758

      Ooops, history…

      • greywarshark 7.1.1

        That gets repeated as if Voltaire were Holy Writ. Freedom of expression is a cliche'. Depends what or who about and can be a very damaging thing. So doesn't deserve knee jerk genuflection. And Voltaire was a pseudonym anyway! He probably said it when he was in his cups.

        • Forget now

          Also Voltaire (or Arouet, if you must) never said or wrote that quote. It is a 20th century paraphrasing of his views by a much later English biographer; Tallentyre (/ Hall).

          The French version of the saying was in circulation by 1950, a very late date. Douglas Young wrote that he heard it in a speech delivered by Ignazio Silone. The saying was printed in a quotation collection in 1963 and then it appeared in the fourteenth edition of the important reference “Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations”.

          • Foreign Waka

            Don't worry, it does not matter nodding and agreeing is the only discussion format in this forum. Never mind.

        • Foreign Waka

          Yes, because democracy has delivered more than any other form of government for ordinary folks.

          Are you saying NZ should change to an autocratic system or similar?

  8. Forget now 8

    Dog whistles pierce far beyond the debating chamber. It's a different Waititi, but I think the video in this piece has a lot to say about the impacts of prevalent racism in Aotearoa. It is one thing to fight struggle against others' prejudice, it's a lot more difficult to fight the racist views that are planted in your own mind. Couldn't help recalling the lines about "potential" in the movie Boy as I watched this:

    Filmmaker Taika Waititi says at school he was accused of sniffing glue, stealing shoes and told to set his expectations low.

    It was his teachers that told him a different story.

    • Foreign Waka 8.1

      Well, here is my contribution. 30 years ago I was told by a Maori that the only reason pakeha were allowed into this country is to pay for their lifestyle. I heard this more than once. True.

      Now, racism is not the prerogative of any race or skin color but it is my observation that race is being used as a tool of power and suppression. And there are people in all quarters who are portraying any issue for the hunger of power.

      • WeTheBleeple 8.1.1

        I thought your point was a bunch of other points but now you've enlightened us it's actually that you fear you are to be paying for the lifestyles of Maori? Because you were told, 30 years ago (but more than once) this is so.

        You sir, are tragic.

        • Foreign Waka

          No just honest. But I am glad that entertains you.

          I also had fantastic experiences at the same time and made friends that have lasted over decades.
          I can see a bias towards certain races shining trough and hence my comment and I reassure you, I truly don’t give a damn. The whole scene is just background noise.

          • greywarshark

            I guess FW that you thought at the time that this Maori was 'having you on', and possibly still do. Maori have a sense of humour, sharp sometimes, and sometimes like to have a 'dig' and look for reaction.

            Were you 'cool' at the time and told him to go ahead and enjoy it till the wind changed or such like?

            I think that we should enjoy knowing each other from the different races, and trying to ‘ban’ racism is a little like assimilation. Let’s have a different meaning to the racism that some people talk about, make it more understanding that we have differences, interesting differences and maybe we can work interesting outcomes together. Perhaps the two sexes might as in this song.
            Say You Won’t Let Go.

            • Foreign waka

              greywarshark, I know you mean well. Thank you.

              I don't think it is meant as having me on really. I was just settling in NZ at the time and tried to get as much information from my surroundings as I could by asking and listening. And this was one of the statements I received in all earnestly. I spent times on a marae and also was once invited to a hui in which it was made clear what some Maori really think about Pakeha. I did not talk unless asked but watched as the elders winced when some had their very animated 5 minutes. I learned a lot in that time but also that you cannot ask someone to give their inherent nature up to please someone else. Dialog is far more stressful than making a song and dance, I can reassure you.

              And yes, I am strong willed otherwise I never would made it in any place.

              As for letting go, no not really as it makes me understand the true motivation about any argument that is being tabled. It does color the perception and I am very aware that I have to differentiate between true grievance and just gravy train laziness.

              Anyone, of any race culture skin color etc. will react if told that they have to "assimilate". You need to remember that this word has different connotation to different cultures. Assimilate as in "becoming absorbed and integrated into a society or culture" also means leaving ones own behind as you cannot be both. Or the meaning "take in and understand fully", which many immigrants do only to be told that they understand Jack something is quite common. These discussion do not take place in an academic forum but in pubs, workplaces, gatherings etc… The challenge is to not fan hatred and leave a door open to talk even after heated exchanges have taken place. But just stumping the ground like a toddler seems to be the modus operandi these days to just to get a point across. And some will use it to their advantage, political or otherwise.

              Enjoy the weekend.

              • greywarshark

                I wasn't actually saying you should 'let go' FW. But meant for everyone of us a bit, be a bit looser about the past and a bit firmer about a more amicable and fairer future for those disadvantaged – which are more Maori than otherwise.

      • Ad 8.1.2

        Everyone pays. Pop down to the Manukau Courts any day and work out the costings on a 15-minute billable rate.

        • WeTheBleeple

          Am ashamed for TS keeping you on.

          • Incognito

            Wrong premise.

            People are free to comment here; TS does not “keep on” anybody as commenter.

            Although TS is a left-leaning blog, Authors write on their own account; TS does not “keep on” anybody as Author.

            From the Policy:

            See here for an explanation of who writes for the blog. The authors write for themselves with the following exceptions.

            It’s ok to disagree; disagreements are often based on or caused by misunderstandings – not everybody who comments here is a Master Communicator.

            I hope this clarifies it.

            • WeTheBleeple


              Sounds like he's saying, in answering 8.1's assertion we're paying for Maori lifestyles, that he thinks Maori lifestyle is being in court.

              Which is pretty damn racist.

              • Incognito

                My interpretation of his comment, which is unhelpfully worded, IMO, is that inequity and inequality in our society have caused and are perpetuating conditions that put too many Māori between a rock and hard place, which may lead to criminality and violence and thus with Court appearances and prison sentences, which are a huge expense to the Taxpayer as well but also feeds a whole industry around it, including lawyers, etc. It is a blot on our society. For ‘good’ measure, I could throw in gangs but that would simply act as a red flag to rednecks.

                In other words, the opposite of racist. But maybe I’m overly generous here …

                • WeTheBleeple

                  The track record of comments that might be taken out of context is long and tedious. Last time I wound up getting banned for him being racist. Takes significant mental gymnastics to conclude he is not. Some would say mental gymnastics is dishonest. But I'm not a lawyer.

                  • Incognito

                    The onus is on commenters to be as clear as possible. Sometimes, comments are ambiguous, because of poor phrasing, because it is deliberate (e.g. to provoke or stimulate thinking or trolling), or because something is just open to interpretation and not (yet) settled, which is why it is being debated in the first place. The onus is on people replying to have an open mind, to realise that some comments are open to interpretation, to be tolerant of different opinions, and to not jump the gun.

                    When in doubt, don’t assume, but ask.

                    Ad’s track record as Author here on TS is strong & clear, IMO, and he’s nailed his colours to the mast.

                    I would not defend a racist at any level!


              • weka

                Sounds like he's saying, in answering 8.1's assertion we're paying for Maori lifestyles, that he thinks Maori lifestyle is being in court.

                Which is pretty damn racist.

                As an author and mod I will say two things. One is having read Ad over a long period of time Ad doesn't strike me as being racist and while I don't understand what his point was, I would ask for clarity rather than jumping to unsubstantiated conclusions.

                The other is that it's not ok to attack authors. You can critique the arguments they put forth, but there is a limit to how much you can have a go at them. If you think Ad was being racist, then explain how and put up an opposing view rather than just throwing out slurs. The kaupapa of the site is robust debate, this is what we are here for. But I'd still check out what he meant first.

      • CrimzonGhost 8.1.4

        Bullshit, I think you're full of shit. Foreign waka needs to sail back to foreign shores. Allowed? Are you effing kidding? White/British imperialists forced their way into this country pillaging & plundering stealing land, pushing the Christian mythology on the people as an instrument of social control. A church long surrendered/capitulated to the British state & capitalism & white superiority selling paradise in next life while supporting/creating Hell in this one. "race a tool of power & suppression"? You're confused lol …it's racism that operates as a tool of "power & suppression". Racism was a means by which the ruling class/elite/established turned the eyes of the majority/the peasants/workers away from their corruption, exploitation, oppression towards the "other", an other which changed according to the times & available minorities to scapegoat …Jews, Blacks, Catholics, Irish, Italians all at one time or another, othered & scapegoated. More recently Muslims have replaced Jews to a large extant in the othering by rightwingers.

  9. Incognito 9

    In each election, when National appeared to be ascendant the Māori Party gave them security. Without the Māori Party National would have needed no losses of MPs due to any sort of problem and to rely on the extremist ACT MPs to get things done.

    Yeah, I’ve heard this reasoning many times before and it aligns well with John Key’s cynical pragmatism. However, I think another reason, possibly more important and even more cynical, was the perception of National’s policies being legitimised and endorsed, at least silently and implicitly, by the partnership with the Māori Party; National benefitted much more from the arrangement than their minion partner.

    The dog whistle never left National and has turned into a bull horn ‘skilfully’ handled by Madam Matador.

  10. roblogic 10

    the ever diminishing Nat rump still cling to their RW myths such as:

    – everybody gets a fair go

    – work hard and you’ll make it

    – only lazy people are poor

    – the wealthy are incredibly virtuous & support NZ by paying more tax than anyone

    – Māori are just moaning about the past they should get over it and move on and join NZ society

    etc, etc

    A small minded, selfish colonial settler mentality not based in reality.

  11. Incognito 11

    Long term? Māori have never been fans of National and this will only get worse.

    Exactly! With the current leadership, National has got nothing to offer Māori and very little to Aotearoa-New Zealand at large. Instead of learning something from their mistakes, they’re rejecting outright recommendations from the review into the party's 2020 election campaign and governance such as making their Caucus more diverse and representative and making Māori a priority area. Instead, Judith Collins is advocating a meritocracy, which is a euphemism for neoliberal status quo and maintaining inequity in our society.

  12. Robert Guyton 12

    Racism. The first minute or so of this clip sets us straight:

    • Fran 12.1

      Awesome. Very clear and bang on. FW experienced a little prejudice, not good for sure, but Maori experience systemic racism every day. Judith Collins assertions and questions are racist as they continue the power narrative. Well done Rawiri for calling that out and dealing with the fall out in a culturally Maori way. Not understanding that simply shows his point.

  13. Corey Humm 13

    The idea that the Maori party wouldn't do a deal with National when they were willing to do a deal with Brash whose kiwi/iwi , genuine race baiting, had kicked out all Maori rep from his shadow cabinet and had Brownlee as his Maori affairs rep is wishful thinking.

    The only thing that stopped Brash being Pm was Brash openly refusing to call Peters.

    There was no policy change on Maori issues under Key none. He never supported the Maori seats. In fact one could say Judith wanting to stand Maori candidates is the only progressive policy change on this in decades.

    During the 2011 minor party debates Hone attacked Tariana for going with the Nats , she said "Hone, you wanted us to go with National"

    The Maori party often talked about how Maori crown relations were infinitley better under Key than Clark and despite losing seats everytime they kept going with the Nats and were willing to go with them again in 2017, had they not gone with the Nats in 2014 they would have been reelected in 2017 and after the 2015 Northland contest the media narrative would have been that the nats were one seat away, one scandal away from losing confidence of the house, weak and wobley. The day after the 2017 election the female maori party co-leader , who ran off to australia not long after was extremely furious at Labour, not National, Labour on TV.

    So what's different from National now? Well National is now talking about Running in Maori electorates , it's the only major party to have a Maori leader and two maori deputies. It's criticism of Maori wards being anti democratic is timid compared to Brash and it's criticism of HP document is insanely mild but getting blown out of proportion by us lefty's terrified its probably a vote winner for the Nats, not enough of course but still. The fact the left are saying any criticism of things like a Maori parliament and sperate health wards when our politics is the politics of universalism and class not identity, is some how hardcore racism is bizarre and the fact we keep giving it oxygen shows how frightened we are that it is indeed a vote winner. National imported a lot of new voters who don't like the treaty and there's a lot of pakeha and indeed Maori who don't like Maori nationalist politics just ask Winston peters who won all the Maori seats, many Maori are socially conservative.

    As for the Maori party, what's changed? It was formed by ex labour members who fiercely hated labour and JT and RW are former labour members who fiercely hate Labour. Most of their time in parliament they attack Labour.

    And let's not forget
    "The Maori party would be the last cab"

    Labour hates the Maori party as much as the Maori party hates them, if not more. Labour thinks it owns the Maori vote and viciously hates anyone who drops the party line or leaves and starts a new party. I can see Labour straight up refusing to talk to the Maori party if they hold the balance of power just like Brash refused to talk to Peters.

    Because all this new emphasis on Maori issues as needed as it is, these aren't happening in a vacuum and it's not cos of Labours large maori caucus it's because the Maori party are back and if the labour Maori caucus doesn't get huge wins for Maori then the Maori party may take more seats.

    You watch labour throw money like crazy at RW's seat next time to try to kill the Maori party off. Hell they are already talking about getting rid of list seats for parties who get an electorate seat but bit 5% ding ding ding

    So considering all this and considering the national party hasn't really changed other than wanting to run in the Maori seats rather than abolishing them and the Nats constantly saying they are willing to work with the Maori party… Who have always been center left

    You can never rule out a Maori /nat deal.

    [user name corrected]

  14. Gosman 14

    A most brilliant take on the events in Parliament and the walk out from Nicole McKee especially this bit:

    "ACT stands for freedom of speech and Rawiri needs to be able to speak his mind. That should be through discussion, debate and honest korero. For Te Pāti Māori to walk out of parliament means they’re not there representing the people who put them there and that’s something they need to weigh up."

    • Robert Guyton 14.1

      "ACT stands for boredom of screech "


      • Gosman 14.1.1

        Ho ho. How very droll. I hope you didn't expend too much effort coming up with that response. It certainly doesn't look like you did.

  15. Any MP who is interested in good government of NZ, as opposed to playing to the gallery, please put up your hand.

    David Lange once described the debating chamber as a Parliamentary cockpit, and he was right. It's all just for show.

  16. Gosman 16

    A good take on this from a political perspective from Chris Trotter.

    • Robert Guyton 16.1

      "ACT stands for freedom of speech and Rawiri needs to be able to speak his mind. That should be through discussion, debate and honest korero"

      Hilarious and tragic, Gosman: freedom of speech, says ACT, so long as you stay within our defined boundaries… oh dear!!
      (That is, no haka! Not condoned, you see…)

    • Bazza64 16.2

      Thanks Gosman – a good post from Chris Trotter who writes common sense on the He Papua debacle.

      • Incognito 16.2.1

        Ah yes, Chris Trotter and Peter Dunne, writing opinion pieces like their lives depend on it. I find common sense so unimaginative and timid. Their opining is like the musty smell of yesteryear and old dust and the sound of dry old leaves crackling when you walk over them.

        • greywarshark

          Falling leaves go a brilliant and beautiful colour from the liquidambar in front of my house. The leaves pile up and together they produce a good mass that will produce good soil in time for growing new things from old. If properly attended to they don't go musty. Chris Trotter is forcing real thought about stuff that needs to be looked at squarely. He shows it from different PoV and reaches corners that don't get touched on The Standard.

          • solkta

            I didn't see any "real thought", just a lot of don't scare the horses and to arse with it if it ain't on my agenda.

          • Muttonbird


            I'm concerned with the vivid portrait painted of a white lynch-mob gathering outside the house of Maori and Labour. Trotter is a man of letters. He does not do prose by accident.

            This is worrying because he sides with the lynch mob. He references the pejorative word "woke" twice and trivialises the Prime Minister of New Zealand by referring to her in quote marks as, "Jacinda", and never in the article by anything other than her first name. Everyone else gets the formal, respectful treatment, but not the PM. I expect not a little misogyny is at play.

            He even linked the progressive left with Islamic jihadism in coining the term, "woke fatwa". This is classic islamophobic, white supremacist thought.

            He lambasts the Maori Party and the Greens for 'wielding pistols in parliament' but where indeed is free-speech if you can't even resist naked racism?

            Concerning also that, from a supposed leftie, Trotter claims politics is a game which Labour simply don't know how to play. This attitude re-enforces the idea stale, pale, former Labour Party males have no desire for progressive reform, rather beating the Nats at their own game is the real goal.

            Chris cries hard about the squashing of a capital gains tax, surely an example of the very political nous and game play he applauds? Yet later he holds up Te Puapua as nothing more than a cockroach, to be squashed.

            He defends and admires John Keys as someone who knew how to play the game. Keys is kin to Trotter, a brother to be tested but only on the most friendly terms. For Chris, the real enemy are Maori and those who support them.

            Now, it could be that The Ruminator, Chris Trotter, is playing 3D chess and this is his way of making sure Labour do indeed stick to the centre in his political game.

            But the way hatred drips from his words when speaking of the PM, kindness, and progressive social change makes me certain he is falling down the black hole of white identity politics.

            Tired, old fucker.

            How's that for free speech, Chris?

            • Forget now

              Trotter used to have a nice turn of phrase; Muttonbird, and long experience of the NZ left which often gave valuable perspective. So it is a bit sad to see him now; shrunken to a sock-puppet, with Jordan Williams' hand shoved up its lower orifice.

              These are his peers nowadays, all proud of their link to the tory eugenicist, COVID-skeptic, and father of the movement; Toby Young:

              • Dr David Cumin – Academic
              • Ashley Church – Business Leader
              • Patrick Corish – Lawyer
              • Melissa Derby – Academic
              • Elliot Ikeliei – Politician
              • Stephen Franks – Lawyer
              • Dane Giraud – Writer and Director
              • Rachel Poulain – Writer
              • Chris Trotter – Political Commentator
              • Jordan Williams – Lawyer


              • Muttonbird

                I just read his take on Israel/Palestine. Of course in his view it was the Palestinians who had to melt away, compromise and accept whatever was forced upon them.

                As proof of how this would work he cited the Roman expulsion of the Jews 2000 years ago and, wow, just look at them now with their own state.

                The mere act of Palestinian resistance to further cleansing by Israel was, to Trotter, an insistence by them to wipe Israel off the map. This crap is straight out of the Israeli hardliner’s manual.

                He also had a vision. The vision was of a glittering towered Gaza City, presumably rivalling Dubai and Singapore, built on Arab oil.

                If this idiot thinks Egypt and Israel are going to stand by and let Gaza develop into a major international trading centre in the region then he's more far gone than I thought.

        • CrimzonGhost

          Ah yes the creaking sound of old men who have lost the courage of conviction of their younger years. Once were warriors, now just bloated windbags huffing & puffing, a changing of tune, shifting right while the world shifts left. The Right is currently on it's last legs harrumphing & snorting, moaning & whinging but the arc if history bends towards progress, evolution. The dinosaurs one by one shuffle off this mortal coil.

    • Noel 16.3

      Gosman ".. that it has the potential to kill their chances of re-election in 2023. That’s why Jacinda is slip-slip-sliding all over the place. "

      The previous election was won on Covid.

      If she doesn't stop spinning this will be a decider in 2023.

  17. Muttonbird 17

    ACT and their hangers on seem very upset by the Māori Party’s actions and words this week.

    I think they are upset because the Māori Party is getting more attention than themselves.

    ACT is a party which relies on theatrics for survival and they are being outdone right now.

    • Gosman 17.1

      Um… except ACT is on many more percentage of the vote than the Maori party in recent polling so I doubt that the MP performance is causing ACT to lose sleep.

    • Pete 17.2

      I agree totally. Act is the party of superficial cheap tricks, selling snake oil by wanting the talk about the label on the bottle not what's inside it.

  18. Muttonbird 18

    Barely Sober was talking to his Tinder date, Heather Duplicity Allan, just now. He claimed the Waititi haka made parliament a laughing stock.

    I’d say it wax a laughing stock before, and the haka brought some welcome gravitas.

    • Robert Guyton 18.1

      Wax? Agreed! That wild-eyed native dance stuff is surely beyond the pale!

      • greywarshark 18.1.1

        Wax makes the floor slippery. Perhaps it wasn't a haka at all, it was the person losing his balance and waving his arms around while he tried to stay upright.

      • Muttonbird 18.1.2

        In my defence, I am struggling with failing eyesight.

        Also, I have to say auto correct is pretty bad in this case. I mean, if AI is so good, in what world would that not auto correct to "was" rather than "wax"?

        Grammatical sense, anyone?

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