Politics | Te Pāti Māori

Chlöe Swarbrick confirmed as Greens’ co-leader, attacks coalition’s ‘bully boy behaviour’

The new co-leader of the Green Party has indicated they are very keen to work closely with Te Pati Maori to promote Māori self-determination

Chlöe Swarbrick has been confirmed as the new Green Party co-leader with Marama Davidson, replacing James Shaw who resigned.

The 29-year-old Auckland Central MP expressed optimism that people power can transform “our world”.

“Thank you to Green Party members across the country who’ve put their faith and trust in me to lead our movement alongside Marama. I ask everyone to put that faith and trust in themselves too, and in our collective capacity to transform our world for the better,” she said Sunday.

“Aotearoa can be a place where everyone has what they need to live a decent life, and our natural world is restored and protected, on a foundation honouring te Tiriti o Waitangi. That is the Greens’ vision, and one we work to see realised every single day.”

Davidson said Swarbrick is “incredible” and brings a “strong voice” to the role.

“Chlöe is an incredible MP, colleague, and friend. She has proven time and time again her unique ability to mobilise communities to push for the change Aotearoa needs,” she said.

“It has never been more important for there to be a strong voice for an Aotearoa that works for everyone, where everyone is supported to live good lives, in warm dry homes, and where we take bold action to cut pollution and protect native wildlife.”

Shaw praised Swarbrick’s belief in people’s ability to bring about change.

“Ever since I first sat down to coffee with her after her mayoral campaign in 2016 she has struck me as a remarkable leader with an extraordinary belief in the power of people to make a difference.”

In one of her first tasks as co-leader, Swarbrick singled out the government’s “bully boy behaviour” as a rallying cry for supporters.

“This week, the Government completed their cruel and, frankly, bizarre 100-day programme. They know that many of the things they have done will make things worse for people and planet and they’ve told New Zealanders that they don’t care.

“We’ve heard from people across the country of their deep despair. That’s precisely what this Government wants from you: to switch off. Don’t.

“The coalition wants you to think better is impossible. They want you to acquiesce to oil, gas and mining lobbyists’ wishlists to destroy our natural environment. They want you to give in to their bonkers agenda that’ll see more people die from smoking to fund landlords’ tax cuts. They want you to believe all politics and politicians are the same - it benefits them and their donors for you to switch off.

“Don’t let this Government’s bully boy behaviour silence you. Let it motivate you. We’ve been here before with regressive conservatives. It was organising by regular people that changed the course of history.”