Pundits say Māori Party are 'under threat'

By Heeni Brown

The Māori Party is under threat from Labour's new leadership according to Māori political commentators Ngahuia Wade and Roihana Nuri, who are calling it the 'Ken and Barbie' effect.

Ngahuia Wade says, "All of a sudden ol 'Ken an Barbie' come in...that's where they'll struggle."

Labour's Jacinda Ardern and Kelvin Davis are on a roll, grabbing the nation's attention.  It comes with warning to the Māori Party, who may bear the brunt of the 'Ken and Barbie' effect. 

"Of all the political parties, they [The Māori Party] are the ones who really need to be worried."

Kawe Kōrero panelists Ngahuia Wade and Roihana Nuri believe the Māori Party will struggle to win Tāmaki Makaurau and Ikaroa-Rāwhiti.  

Roihana Nuri says, "Nobody is even talking about them.  They're busy talking about Labour and the Greens- where's the Māori Party?"

But it's not all dire straits for the Māori Party.  Both panelists predict some votes are likely to migrate to the Māori Party following Metiria Turei's resignation as co-leader of the Green Party.

"They do have a lifeline and that's Mei Taare-Reedy- because all the sympathy votes for Metiria will probably go to her."