Thursday December 14, 2017   Last updated 01:54AM

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Labour drifting away from Maori rights again - Maori Party/MANA in with a chance for 2017

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Labour drifting away from Maori rights again - Maori Party/MANA in with a chance for 2017

Two incidents this week highlight Labour's usual fear of looking too supportive of Maori Rights and sign posts where the Maori Party & MANA movement need to move to maximise 2017.

It should come as no surprise that Labour have smacked down Kelvin Davis from protesting with Native American's at Standing Rock. The last thing Labour want is a political debate over sovereignty. This was re-iterated by David Parker's call this week that Maori don't have a greater interest in water.

Labour fear the angry white backlash that always rears its ugly head when discussing Maori rights meaning Labour offers Maoridom what they think they can get past pakeha voters rather than what is right.

Denying Kelvin the opportunity to protest with Native American's and re-iterating that Maori have no greater interest in water means Labour are once again taking their Maori voters for granted, this provides the Maori Party and MANA with a real opportunity.

If the Maori Party can cut a deal with MANA not to run candidates in certain Maori electorates, they can sweep the Maori electorates. The Maori Party still needs a high profile candidate in Auckland, but they have a good start in the other electorates.

Counterintuitively, if Labour lost all 6 of their Maori Electorates and gained 30% in the Party vote, they would still bring in their Maori MPs off the list because of MMP.

The Maori Party and MANA Movement could be the best possible chance for a change in Government and Labour's best chance to replace National could lie in actually losing the Maori electorates, not winning them.

Martyn Bradbury

Editor -

Waatea 5th Estate

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