by David Clendon
The Green Party has agreed to cast proxy votes for Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira.
A formal agreement takes effect from today, although we have served as Hone’s proxy on an ad-hoc basis in recent weeks.
We are currently casting a proxy for Te Atatū MP Chris Carter as well and the rationale is the same in both instances: it’s a small way to help an electorate maintain its representation in the House regardless of their MP’s circumstances.
It is impractical, otherwise, for an independent MP to be present in the House for every vote on every Bill, every amendment, every motion, etc.
Hone can tell us whether he wishes to support or oppose and we will cast his vote accordingly. (We will use the Green Party’s position as a default if there are no specific instructions.)
There’s no obligation in this arrangement; we’ll keep exercising Hone’s proxy as long as he’s an independent MP, or either party can withdraw at any time should they wish.
Our sole aim is to help the voters of Te Tai Tokerau (and Te Atatū) have their voice heard in Parliament. We have previously helped Tariana Turia in a similar way.
For the record, Hone has also transferred his oral questions to the Green Party, and we will use these extra questions unless Hone indicates he intends to use them on any given day.