Labour MP Rants Against Democracy After Maori Ward Referendums Fail

Dieuwe de Boer

A number of referendums were held recently around whether special Maori Wards should be implemented on various councils around the country, like the unelected Maori Statutory Board we have in Auckland (no, we didn't get a referendum on that). Every single one was rejected by the electorates, even in Whakatane, which came closest at 56% opposed. Most of the rest were rejected by nearly 80% on average. You'd think it obvious that the vast majority don't want unelected rulers to be selected on a racial basis.

Some were not so enthused by the result. Labour MP Tamati Coffey took to Twitter to denounce democracy as not giving a voice to the minority and that New Zealand is a racist country because we don't want racist laws. What seems to be even more sad, is that he complains it is a "bad day for democracy" when referendums are about as democratic as you can get. In a manner of speaking, every election is a referendum. Labour and Co won the last one and I don't see Tamati complaining about that.

David Farrar highlighted that some of these places, like Palmerston North, are incredibly liberal and always vote Labour. What you have here is a Labour MP complaining that his own supporters and voters are racist.