November 19, 2012
Tamihere credentials not right for Labour gatekeepers
Former Labour cabinet minister John Tamihere is asking why the party won't renew his membership.
The Waipareira Trust boss won't confirm whether he will seek the nomination to take on Social Development Minister Paula Bennett for the Waitakere seat, but he says he wants to get the party talking about issues like lifting Māori education, skills and incomes, rather than gay marriage.
Mr Tamihere says he was warned to stay clear of the party's annual conference in Auckland at the weekend after his online renewal application was rejected.
"I've got a double degree in law. I've come out of the Labour heartland in terms of (being) one of 12 kids. I've got six kids. I've had to do it tough on a whole range of things. I've been a cabinet minister. You'd think that I represent some heartland Labour territory. And you'd think that if I renewed my membership it would go through just like that just like down the RSA or just like at the rugby league club," he says.
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