Friday March 23, 2018   Last updated 04:51AM

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Labour Maori caucus swells to 13

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Labour now has its largest ever Maori caucus.

Kelvin Davis trounced Mana’s Hone Harawira in Te Taitokerau by over 4000 votes.

Nanaia Mahuta chalkked up a 7000-vote majority over Rahui Papa, and called for the advisors who had pushed King Tuheitia into the realm of party politics to stand down.

As expected Rino Tirikatene held Te Tai Tonga.

Former Greens co-leader Metiria Turei came second with 4448 votes, but the Greens came fifth on the party vote tally in that electorate.

Peeni Henare, Adrian Rurawhe and Meka Whaitiri had comfortable wins.

In the general seats, Louisa Wall is back in Manurewa and Wellington deputy mayor Paul Eagle took the Rongotai seat vacated by Annette King by a two to one margin over National’s Christopher Finlayson.

Jo-Anne Luxton came up short in Rangitata but comes in on the party list, as does Northland candidate Willow-Jean Prime and Kiri Allan, who halved Social Development Minister Anne Tolley’s margin in East Coast.

And broadcaster Willie Jackson is back for another term in parliament, having served as an Alliance MP between 1999 and 2002.

In the other parties, New Zealand First’s Pita Paraone was too far down the list to get back in, but former Labour MP Shane Jones made the cut, although there is no expectation he will form a Maori caucus within the party with leader Winston Peters, deputy Ron Mark and Fletcher Tabuteau.

After going into the election campaign with a strong Maori line-up, the Greens ended up with just Marama Davidson in its caucus.

Act’s David Seymour, who has Ngapuhi whakapapa, is back and MP for Epsom, but National leader Bill English has told him he won’t be part of a coalition if National is able to form one with New Zealand First.

National’s Maori count was boosted with the arrival of Harete Hipango, who won Whanganui.

Paula Bennett, Simon Bridges, Jo Hayes, Shane Reti, and Jami-Lee Ross also have Maori connections.


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