Wednesday, 16 November 2011

A Woman's Place - NZ First 2011

When people mention NZ First it's hard to think past Winston Peters, but there is more to this party's candidates than just the former MP for Tauranga. 

Historical representation of women:
NZ First was founded in 1993, after Peters left National in 1992.  Since then they have had 25 MPs of whom 5 have been female (20%):

In 1996 NZF won 17 seats - 11 from the List, 6 electorates (Tauranga plus the five Maori seats).  In this caucus 4 MPs were women, all from the List, and two of them were Ministers for at least part of the Coalition.  In 1999 they were reduced to 5 seats, and only made it back in because of Peters' retaining Tauranga.  None of these MPs were women.  In 2002 they bounced back, with 13 MPs, but only one was a woman, and she remained the only woman in the caucus after the 2005 election when they were reduced again, this time to 7 MPs.  They haven't had any MPs since dipping out in 2008.  Of the 5 female MPs throughout their history to date, only one lasted more than a term (Barbara Stewart, 2002-2008). 

According to Wikipedia, NZ First have never had a woman in the roles of leader, deputy leader or president.

2008 NZ First Party List:
I didn't analyse it!  This seems astonishing to me, but I can't find the blog post so it must be true.

Current representation of women:
Not in Parliament, two women as party Vice Presidents currently, and while there is no deputy leader at the moment that position is often given to no. 2 on the party List, who is female.

2011 NZ First Party List:

Women represented across the whole list: 5 out of 33 (15%).
Top 5 - Two (Tracey Martin at 2, Barbara Stewart at 5) 2/5 = 40%
Top 10 - Four (As for Top 5 plus Asenati Taylor at 8, Helen Mulford at 9) 4/10 = 40%
Top 20 - Four (As for Top 10) 4/20 = 20%
Top 30 - Five (As for Top 20 plus Olivia Ilalio at 28, ) 5/30 = 17%

The List ends at 33 and there are no women in those last three.

Likely future representation of women:
The only chance for NZ First to get back in is to crack the 5% threshold.  If they did get 5% they'd likely bring in Martin and Stewart, in a caucus of at least 7.  At this time it is looking like they won't be back (although personally I never think it's totally wise to rule Winston out!)

Other observations on candidate diversity:
As throughout the history of NZ First, there are a number of candidates of Maori descent.  Also there is a candidate each from Indian, Chinese and Samoan descent, according to the profiles on the website.

As always, open to further intell in comments, thanks.


NZ First's List (scroll up for profiles and electorate candidates)
Index of A Woman's Place posts from 2008 and 2011 - so far Act, Conservative Party, Greens, National, Labour in addition to this post for 2011


Hugh said...

I am going to go out on a limb here and - against all the received political wisdom - rule Winston out.

Anonymous said...

I am very proud and happy to see all blogs and comments concerning the ruling out NZ First from Parliament; have had to bite their own tongue...with not only 8MPs but three of them being females.

One of those females being of Pacific Island Heritage. It has been fantastic and i have long awaited Winstons return into government. His promise to make this government accountable is being recognised and appreciated.
Someone needs to speak

Tim said...

Olivia Ilalio at 28 is a male, not a female.

Wonderful to see Barbara Stewart joined by Tracy Martin and Asenati Lole-Taylor in parliament.