The Māori Party are unlikely to go with National, they tell us.
Here’s the bigger issue: the Māori Party most likely won’t get the chance given they won’t get a seat or five percent.
Which is a shame because MMP requires choice, it’s very invention was designed to bring to life an array of smaller concepts and ideas encapsulated in minor type parties,
Sadly, its heyday is over. The United Party, Alliance, the Christians, they’ve all come and gone, along with a variety of other pretenders who were deceived by the MMP proponents into thinking that this was a democratic utopia where all minor players would have the chance of flourishing and we’d all be better off for it.
The Māori Party claim their people lean left, which is true, that’s why Labour have historically held the Māori seats.
And that is why there was a bit of hell to pay when the Māori Party was formed over the fore shore and seabed scrap that they decided to go with National.
Tariana Turia and Pita Sharples cannot be blamed for doing what they did, and for a while it kind of paid off. Their argument was its far better to be in government and getting stuff done, than it was to be on the side lines whining.
Even the Greens sort of got that, and you might remember they did the odd deal with the Nats on things like housing insulation. But as time has passed, and each election has come and gone so too have the minor parties
This time round its, New Zealand First. They’re not over yet but there isn’t a poll that has them currently above the threshold and they’ll be fighting for their very survival.
So given that bit of history, its more than fair to suggest the Māori Party got caned last time, not because they went with National but because they were in government and vanished.
But then if you want to go down the history track, surely we have all learned that the reason the Māori Party got noise in the first place was through anger. And that anger was ignited by Labour’s approach to the foreshore and seabed?
So two things there. One, why would you want to hang out with a party that shafted you in the first place? And two, given it was rage and fury and the associated attention that got you elected in the first place, and the lack of fury and rage that got you booted out of parliament, just what is it that’s propelling you back to parliament this time?
What’s the issue? Where is the dissatisfaction? Is it Whanua Ora is it Oranga Tamariki. I doubt it.
Is it Labour’s lack of presence in the Māori electorates, is it their lack of delivery? That’s an argument, but it’s not the seed of a revolution.
No, as much as I’d like to be proved wrong. The Māori Party have had their day and they can dream of forming coalitions with whoever they want, but those coalitions will be in their imaginations, not in our parliament.
Mike Hosking is a political broadcaster on Newstalk ZB, who has hosted his number one breakfast show since 2008 - see HERE.