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Ed Sheeran

2014 Maori MP winners and losers and could the Maori Party and MANA Movement merge?

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OPINION: 2014 was a brutal year for the political left and there were many Maori MP winners and losers.


Nanaia Mahuta - Winner

Her performance on the Labour Party leadership campaign trial was electrifying. Nanaia had the stage and articulated a staunch, strong, proud Maori voice. The lift in Maori support for Labour needs recognition and in Nanaia, Maori have a champion that has won respect inside Caucus and outside it. Labour need to give Nanaia the mana she deserves.

Marama Fox - Winner

Marama Fox has done more to rebuild the Maori Party's credibility than any other MP. Her leadership skills are required now more than ever. Any hope of a Maori Party - MANA Movement relationship for the 2017 election i.e. on her shoulders. If she can heal the biggest tear in political Maoridom, she would enhance her position while advancing the dream of an independent Maori political voice. All eyes need to be on Fox in 2015.

Te Ururoa Flavell - Loser

Flavell will be tarred with the deeply unpopular decision to go into partnership with a political Party like National whose policies are no friend to Maori. Despite all the 'you have to sit at the table' rhetoric, it doesn't mean much when John Key has already privatised the table before you get to sit down on it. Whether a Maori Party MANA Movement relationship will occur is dependent on Flavell stepping down. He is the block to any reconnection and the talks this year between representatives of MANA and MP for a possible relationship were never taken seriously by Flavell. The rival he still feels towards Hone makes his resignation a necessity.

Hone Harawira - Loser

Hone's gamble with the Internet Party was met with a character assassination by the mainstream media that seemed more lynch mob than reasoned debate. 20,000 new state homes, free tertiary education and feeding every poor kid in every poor school wasn't heard above the media's Kim Dotcom feeding frenzy. Maori lost one of their most dynamic voices and leaders within Parliament. If a coalition could be arranged between the MANA Movement and Maori Party, a new leadership with Fox and Harawira could run on one ticket in the Maori electorates and win back every seat from Labour. Hone is down. Not out.

Kelvin Davis - Winner

Despite questions over his support from far right blogger Cameron Slater, Kelvin managed to win Te Tai Tokerau from Hone without too much scrutiny of the smear campaign Davis was going to run against Harawira. Winston and the right of the Labour Party all ganged up with John Key's endorsement to end MANA and stop their policies for the poor take root by all supporting Kelvin. His mean spirited campaign won Kelvin the battle, but such a bitter reaping questions the value of the harvest.

Our Loss:

Marama Davidson and Annette Sykes not managing to enter Parliament are the two greatest disappointments from the election. Both are future leaders of Maoridom, both would represent Maori with true integrity.

Copyright © 2015, UMA Broadcasting Ltd:

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