Confidence and Supply Agreement 2011
The Māori Party’s second and current Relationship Accord and Confidence and Supply Agreement 2011 with the National Party for the 50th Sitting of Parliament was signed on 11 December 2011 in Matangireia, Parliament Buildings.
Hon Dr Pita Sharples was appointed to the Ministerial positions of Minister of Māori Affairs, Associate Minister of Education and Associate Minister of Corrections.
Hon Tariana Turia was appointed to the Ministerial positions of Minister of Whānau Ora, Minister for Disability Issues, Associate Minister of Health, Associate Minister of Housing and Associate Minister of Social Development and Employment.
The Government has agreed to adopt and implement during this term of Parliament the following policies advanced by the Māori Party:
1. Whānau Ora
2. Refocus Te Puni Kokiri
3. Ministerial Committee on Poverty
4. Initial initiatives to urgently address the effects of poverty
6. Employment and Training
9. Review of New Zealand’s Constitutional Arrangements
10. Maori Economic Strategy
11. Māori Language Strategy
12. Tobacco reform
14. Private Members Bills and Government Bills
15. Non-support of Partial Asset Sales
What is Confidence and Supply?
Confidence and Supply Agreements allow the Government of the Day to hold power when they do not have the majority vote.
Confidence means the Māori Party will support the Government on any motions of confidence that are raised in the House of Representatives. Supply means the Māori Party will also support the Government on any budgetary or proceedural votes so Bills can be passed in Parliament. Without confidence and supply arrangements stable Governments cannot be formed.
When the Māori Party votes for a procedural motion it is sometimes confused with the Party supporting a Bill the motion has been applied to. For example, in June 2012 the Māori Party continuously voted against the Mixed Ownership Model Bill, but because of confidence and supply, we had to support the procedural motions to send the Bill through the different stages in Parliament. In other words, the Party is required to support procedural motions to uphold the process of allowing Bills to go through Parliament, but reserves the right to vote against Bills themselves at any stage.
What is Collective Responsibility?
Accepting Ministerial positions means accepting collective responsibility.
When Dr Pita Sharples or Tariana Turia are speaking and voting about policies in their Portfolios (Māori Affairs and Whānau Ora, Disability respectively) they are speaking and voting for Government.
Furthermore, when Dr Pita Sharples and Tariana Turia are speaking and voting about policies relating to their delegations in their Associate Portfolios (Education, Corrections and Health, Housing, Social Development and Employment respectively) they are also speaking and voting for Government.
Associate Ministers are normally bound to the entire portfolio, however in the case of the Māori Party Confidence and Supply Agreement 2011, collective responsibility was negotiated to be bound to delegations only.
On all other matters they can speak as Co-Leaders of the Māori Party.
Previous Confidence and Supply Agreements
The Māori Party’s first Confidence and Supply Agreement 2008 was signed with the National Party for the 49th Sitting of Parliament on 16 November 2008 in Matangireia, Parliament Buildings.