Voting for MPs who speak for MāoriThe Māori Party does not speak for all Māori any more than any other political party -apart from ACT, perhaps - speaks for non-Māori. Much is made of their polling of around 3% - yet those in the Māori electorate who support the Māori Party acknowledge that the electorate vote is the vote that counts in terms of getting Māori Party MPs in the House.
Unlike Lindsay Mitchell, I don’t consider that the Māori Party is pushing a separatist line, and should its vote drop, that NZ First will pick up the support. There may well be just as much extra support for the Greens as NZ First. Even if the Māori Party support does drop to 1% and most of the electorate vote holds, all it would mean that support of the Māori Party, in terms of getting seats in the house, holds. List votes will go to other parties, not necessarily to NZ First. In fact NZ First would probably get no more than 1000 extra votes per Māori electorate. In some Māori electorates, more voted Green than NZ First in the past three elections. The Māori Party normally gets at least three times as many votes as NZ First does in the Māori electorates, so more lists votes will go to other parties – probably Labour.
The Māori Party does speak for Māori. However that does not preclude the notion that its policies are for all New Zealanders – including Whanau Ora. Furthermore, the Greens (perhaps National even, without ACT influence) are more likely to speak for Maori than NZ First. It appears that most have forgotten that NZ First was the party that put forward a bill to delete the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi from all legislation - including the Treaty of Waitangi Act.
Labels: Maori Party