Question marks still over Key
The polls tell us that the Nats are likely to be our next government.
Perhaps that will work out because there’s a chance John Key and his mates will bring energy and fresh ideas to the job – a few of which may be worthwhile.
But if they take over, you’d want more reassurance he has his head around Maori issues.
The Nats’ history in dealing with Maori is dodgy.
I know they came up with the treaty settlements programme but a process that recognises less than 5 percent of what Maori owned is shameful, despite Doug Graham walking off with a knighthood.
And unfortunately they have a tendency to overplay the race card.
That was the gist of the Don Brash Orewa speech that won him support, even though it is ridiculous to look at our history and conclude Maori have been unduly privileged.
He has come and gone and the Nats now have a leader who will happily hongi Tame Iti, smile his way around Ratana Pa and appear to be on a wavelength with the bros.
But this is the same guy who endorsed Dr Brash’s twisted take on race relations.
He’s on record saying he supports what was said – but not the way he said it.
The problem, John, wasn’t how Don said it, it was the ignorant, prejudiced belief underlying the words – that Maori have it sweet, and that it’s time poor, underprivileged Pakeha were on par with them.
Maybe we should make allowances for Mr Key because he’s new and still learning.
But I remain unconvinced.
I want him to disown what Dr Brash said and reassure us National won’t revert to the anti-Maori views he espoused.
Having a hongi with Tame Iti isn’t going to be enough.