Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Harawira pledges Mana will battle child poverty:
"That is what will distinguish it from all the other parties in the House. We need to put the brakes on the bus and turn around to pick up the kids living in poverty."

He said the Maori Party was unable to properly speak for the poor while it was in coalition with the National Party.

He said the party would force a focus on child poverty over the next three years and work with any party which would help make a difference.

Under New Zealand's electoral system, with the Maori seats and a Multi-party Mixed Proportional parliament, one could see the ManaP fighting to replace the MaoriP as a party seeking to win Maori constituency majorities in excess of their national party vote ~ the "overhang seat" scenario.

However, under the rule that waives the 5% party list threshold for minor parties that win constituencies, Mana can also pursue a strategy of pursuing a party list vote in excess of its constituencies won ~ as the ACT-NZP had done in 2008. The "wasted vote" problem for a 3rd part on the edge of the threshold is substantially eased if the party holds one or two consituencies without overhang, so each extra roughly 0.84% of the party list vote nationwide can mean an extra party list seat.

Indeed, the ideal from a partisan perspective could entail winning split votes in Maori consitituencies that are presently going MaoriP at the constituency level and LabP at the party list level, and also winning split votes in regular constituencies where the LabP gets the constituency vote and the ManaP gets the party list vote.

For that, a focus on the growth in child poverty that is part and parcel of a neoliberal policy stance is well placed to pressure the MaoriP and the LabP and any "neoliberal conservationist" tendency within the GrnP from the left, which is to say, the anti-corporatist side.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sun Nov 27th, 2011 at 02:39:02 PM EST

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