Oct 12, 2011

Maori electorates, Kereama Pene and Asset sales

I want to say so much more with these topics, but I don't have the time:

Rawiri Taonui nails it in this column:

Mana whenua will therefore dictate the outcomes in at least six electorates, this time supporting the candidates they think best represent their interests, regardless of which party they come from.
Tribes will also back their own among those who fought out the Mana-Maori Party split. Both factors should see the sitting MPs - Parekura Horomia, Nanaia Mahuta, Tariana Turia, Te Ururoa Flavell and Harawira - return to Parliament.

As I’ve always said the vote in the Maori electorates is a personality vote, but also, and this is the first time I’ve put this forward, a loyalty vote. Loyalty includes tribal loyalty and loyalty built up over the years of the MPs service to the electorate.    

The wild card is that the Digipoll survey has preceded the announcing of several Mana candidates. Maori voters prefer names and faces. Expect some figures to change as candidates are confirmed.

Correct. The Marae Poll was shit and I’ll briefly explore why tomorrow. 

Mana's Annette Sykes faces an uphill battle overhauling a 40-point gap to Flavell sitting on 59.3 per cent in Waiariki.
Sykes is highly intelligent and hugely experienced in litigation and Waitangi Tribunal proceedings. Iwi politics may be against her.
She is also assertive, which conservative traditionalists might rail against.
Sykes would have been a better selection in Auckland. Sharples has significant support; however, there is potential volatility.
Urban Maori make up 80 per cent of the population so mana whenua will be less influential. Sykes would also be a point of difference against two high-profile male candidates and would pull in more Maori women votes.
The right Mana candidate will throw Auckland wide open.

While, Mana haven’t put forward the right candidate, they’ve put forward…
Kereama Pene cannot foot it with Dr Pita Sharples and Harvard graduate Shane Jones – those guys will eat him for breakfast. Pene’s selection is manna from heaven for Pita Sharples though. Chris Trotter discusses the appointment here.


Mana may have got it wrong in selecting Pene, but the party does get it right in calling for the voting age to be lowered to 16. The best way to engage young people in the political process is to include them. Say you’re an employed sixteen year old and contributing to the economy, shouldn’t you have a say in how the economy is managed? I think so. For a nice summary on the pro’s of lowering the age see this post at Political Dumpground.    


In an attempt to distance herself from the Nat’s Tariana Turia has come out against asset sales. This will annoy her Iwi backers who have vigorously supported asset sales, but placate her disgruntled left-wing supporters and serve as a point of difference between her party and the Nat’s. I wonder if the Iwi Leaders will be thinking twice about opening their pockets to the Maori Party.

1 comment:

  1. Well, I'm from Ngati Tuwharetoa ki Kawerau (the originals yeah!), Ngati Awa, Whakatohea, Tuhoe and Te Whanau-a-Apanui, and I don't know anyone who will be supporting Te Ururoa or the Maori Party - with the exception of those historic kupapa from Te Arawa (but only then by the iwi elite). I don't know where Ngai Te Rangi, Ngati Ranginui etc will lean but after the 'accidental' oil spill and laboured reaction they'll be spitting tacks, fire and brimstone.

    I think the idea of iwi loyalty like hahi loyalty is popular only amongst the older voters who are historically politically naive and impotent anyway. Youth are waking up to the idea that the distribution of wealth and power claimed by the religious and iwi elite and often by decree has benefited the 1% with bugger all trickle down.



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