You’ve gotta admire Act leader Rodney Hide.
He has a lot of balls – especially for a feller who fancies himself in a yellow jacket – for telling Prime Minister John Key he will resign as Local Government Minister if National agrees to Maori representation on the Auckland Super City council.
It’s a bold gesture, even though government stability would not be threatened, because Act’s five votes would still support National on confidence and money supply votes.
The issue has been reignited after it was revealed that National MP Tau Henare sent his colleagues an email on Tuesday trying to convince them to support Maori seats in the Super City bill that will be returned to Parliament soon.
But Act’s refusal to budge means that a compromise on the Maori seats that Mr Key had previously hinted at looks impossible.
Mr Hide is responsible for steering the Super City restructuring bill through Parliament. He told the Herald last night that he had made it clear to Mr Key that he could not remain as minister if the legislation included Maori seats on the council.
Henare is on the committee considering the bill.
Alf is on Hide’s side with this one. But it’s ticklish.
We Nats seem to be doing our damndest to keep cosy with the Maori Party nowadays, and you can betcha Sharples and his mob will be putting the heat on Key to put Hide’s commitment to the test.