October 12, 2014
Labour Maori at edge of three-way battle for top job
The new chair of Labour's Maori caucus, Peeni Henare, says the party's Maori MPs have a lot to contribute to what is now a three-way leadership race.
Former leader David Cunliffe today dropped out and pledged his support to list MP and former union leader Andrew Little.
He's up against acting leader David Parker and Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson.
Mr Henare says the seven Labour Maori MPs have asked the leadership contenders to meet with them so they can hear how they might meet Maori aspirations.
He says while Maori are always hoping for a Maori leader, the Maori caucus includes several new or relatively new MPs who are still learning the ropes.
But no one discounts the experience of long-serving Hauraki-Waikato MP Nanaia Mahuta or Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis.
"I'm a big supporter of Kelvin. He would be a great mix in leadership but I appreciate and acknowledge his committment to Te Tai Tokerau. He wants to make that his pa tuwatawata, if you like, before throwing his name in perhaps in the future for leadership but I'm a great admirer of his and I know alot of people are talking about him," he says.
Peeni Henare says he supports Labour's leadership process, which includes voting by party members and union affiliates as well as MPs, although he would have preferred to wait until after the review of the reasons for Labour's poor election performance.
FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH PEENI HENARE CLICK ON THE LINK
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