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Dr Muriel Newman

Parliamentary Sovereignty Under Attack

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Geoffrey Palmer is at it again.

Not content with creating the Treaty grievance industry by extending the jurisdiction of the Waitangi Tribunal back to 1840, and inserting ‘undefined’ Treaty principles into legislation – enabling activist Judges to invent new Treaty ‘rights’, he now wants replace the sovereignty of the Queen with a new Constitution embedding the Treaty as superior law: “I remain of the opinion that the Treaty, like the Bill of Rights, should become part of New Zealand’s new superior law Constitution”.

This new attack on the sovereignty of our Parliament follows on from the Maori Party’s 2012 attempt to introduce a new Treaty-based constitution, through their $4 million taxpayer-funded ‘constitutional review’. The concept was rejected by the public, and then shelved.

The reality is that a country’s constitution belongs to the people. It is the charter that sets out the basic rules by which a nation is governed – such as the rights and safeguards of citizens, how state power is exercised, and how Members of Parliament are elected.

New Zealand is said to have an ‘unwritten’ constitution, because like the UK and Israel, our constitution is not found in a single document – it’s a collection of statutes, conventions, and common law rights. This guarantees a flexibility and simplicity that makes New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements the envy of nations across the globe.

Our unwritten constitution also gives us one of the world’s strongest Parliamentary democracies. In New Zealand, the elected Members of Parliament who make the laws are answerable to the public through the ballot box. This gives New Zealanders a power over law-making that is not found in countries with written constitutions, where judges, who cannot be sacked, are in charge of law-making.

Judges would be in charge here too, if Sir Geoffrey’s gets his way.

His latest attack on our constitution comes through a new book A Constitution for Aotearoa New Zealand that Sir Geoffrey has written in association with the Law Foundation Chair Dr Andrew Butler.

The Law Foundation provided $10,000 in funding for the book and another $19,100 for a website. They state that the book has been written “from the position of New Zealand as a republic”, and that it “will provide a higher law constitution with increased power to the courts”.  The website, they explain, is to “facilitate public submissions” in order to “refine the draft constitution based on those submissions and produce a final version”.

The authors’ plan to seek the support of the Government for a comprehensive public consultation process, based on their final proposal, with a view to eventually passing it into law.

Sir Geoffrey and Dr Butler have framed their attack on Parliamentary sovereignty and democracy around the need for a country’s constitution to be in a single document so it is easier for the public to understand. They say, “The trouble with the ‘New Zealand constitution’ is that it is difficult to find and people do not know where to locate it. This situation makes it very difficult for the ordinary person to know how New Zealand is governed. New Zealand’s constitution should be written down authoritatively in one place. That way everyone can know what the basic rules are.”

Although this sounds benign, in reality it is implausible and manipulative. The authors know that written constitutions are far from the simple documents they make out. The US constitution is a case in point – while it is written in fewer than 8,000 words, its seven articles and 27 amendments hide the mountain of complex case law needed to understand what it all means. This is especially the case now that judges have given themselves the power to rule on matters that are not even mentioned – based on the ‘vibe’ of the constitution and the fact that it is ‘always speaking’.

This week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, Thomas Gibbons, a lawyer and University law lecturer, finds Sir Geoffrey’s and Dr Butler’s ‘simplicity’ argument “disingenuous”:

“Put aside for a moment whether it is best to have unelected judges, rather than an elected legislature, determine the law on issues. To properly understand the US constitution, we need to read not a single document, but a large number of Supreme Court opinions, consider various conventions of judicial and legislative practice, and understand presidential administration behaviours. In short, we need to understand an extensive unwritten constitution.

“An interested member of the public wanting to properly understand the US constitution, its arrangements, its law, and how it works in practice, in an easily accessible format, would most usefully turn to a textbook.

“We can do the same with the New Zealand constitution. If Palmer and Butler’s main goal is accessibility and public understanding of the constitution… they could publish a new book.”

The objective of Sir Geoffrey and Dr Butler is clearly not to make our constitution more understandable – otherwise, as Thomas says, they would almost certainly have written a new book explaining it, rather than a book undermining it.

Instead, their draft constitution reveals a far more radical agenda. While our forefathers ensured that in New Zealand, the Queen is our Sovereign, that governing power is held by our elected Members of Parliament, and that our democratic rights are based on citizenship, they want to turn that on its head. They would remove the Queen as our Head of State, put judges in charge of law making, and, by giving the Treaty of Waitangi a central role, re-define our democratic rights based on race.

The Treaty of Waitangi, which was a simple document of understanding between Great Britain and Maori before sovereignty was formalised, consists of only three ‘terms’ – the first states that the Queen is to be sovereign, the third, that Maori are her subjects with the same rights and privileges as all other citizens, and the second, that those rights include the possession, use and enjoyment one’s own physical property or ‘taonga’.

The Treaty did not establish a ‘partnership’, and nor did it bestow superior status on any group of citizens – it simply guaranteed equal rights to all New Zealanders under the Queen’s law.

Nevertheless, even though the Treaty is not valid in international law, and has no independent legal standing in New Zealand law, Sir Geoffrey and Dr Butler are intent on giving it constitutional status through Part 11 of their draft constitution: “The rights, duties and obligations of Maori under the Treaty of Waitangi are hereby recognised and affirmed” and “The Treaty of Waitangi is considered as always speaking and is to be applied to circumstances as they arise so that effect may be given to its spirit, intent and principles.”

The draft specifies “Maori”, without defining who a Maori is. So, while more and more countries around the world are removing the concept of ‘race’ from their statute books – in acknowledgement of the fact that there is only one human race – this constitution would not only cement into law the fact that a ‘Maori race’ exists, but it would give judges the power to decide who would qualify as a member of that race.

The “rights” of Maori people under the Treaty are also mentioned but not defined, again leaving judges with a carte blanche to decide whether that means rights to fresh water, oil and gas, the conservation estate, private property, or anything else.

These Treaty clauses would be used to ensure that every law grants special privileges to members of the ‘Maori race’ such as priority access to health care, preferential housing, more generous welfare payments – and since the Treaty is ‘always speaking’, activist judges will be able to invent superior rights forever.

With the Treaty of Waitangi at the heart of the constitution, every new law would have to be assessed as to its effect on Maori Treaty rights. If it was judged to enhance Treaty rights it would proceed, but if it failed, it would be rejected. All existing laws in the country would be open to challenge. There would be endless litigation, uncertainty, and racial bitterness.

Some tribes are already saying there can be no full and final Treaty settlements – that binding future generations is ‘not the Maori way’. Under the Treaty Constitution being proposed by Sir Geoffrey and Dr Butler, the claims process would never end. Nor would the role of the Waitangi Tribunal – instead, it would be strengthened and widened, so it could continue to spread its misinformation in perpetuity.

In fact, a Treaty of Waitangi Constitution would ensure that race becomes the single most important determinant of the future in New Zealand – controlling whether someone is part of an elite ruling class, or a second class citizen in their own land.

As you read this, if in principle you oppose their plan, then you should make a submission – HERE – otherwise there is a real risk that only supporters will engage in the process, enabling the authors to claim that the public strongly endorses a Treaty-based constitution as a blueprint for the future.

Sir Geoffrey is not the only one seeking to dethrone the Queen. It’s also what Gareth Morgan wants. He has also attacked the sovereignty of Parliament, proposing that the Treaty should be entrenched in a new constitution and that an Upper House of Parliament should be established with half of the members Maori. Now that he is considering forming a new political party to contest the 2017 General Election, he may use his radical agenda as part of his main policy platform.

Yet another attack on the sovereignty of Parliament is coming from the Iwi Leaders Group. They launched a constitutional review back when the Maori Party’s Government review was underway, but only published their report outlining their “constitutional transformation” plan, earlier this year. Over the next five years, they aim to build the support of ‘the Crown’ and ‘local authorities’ for constitutional change to ensure “the authority of Maori is not subordinated to that of the majority”. They plan to push the Government into holding a “Tiriti Convention” in 2021, with a view to replacing the constitution by 2040 – something they do not see “as some pious hope but as a legitimate treaty expectation”.

Iwi Leaders say they want to address the fundamental imbalance that exists “between the Crown’s exercise of constitutional authority and the constitutional powerlessness of Maori”. They want to “restore Maori control over matters affecting the lives of Maori”, saying that “a full and final ‘settling’ of colonisation should mean more than a cash payment and even an apology. It requires a transformative shift in thinking to properly establish the constitutional relationship that Te Tiriti intended by restoring the authority that was once exercised through mana and rangatiratanga”.

These attacks on the sovereignty of Parliamentary are real. Those promoting constitutional change know that New Zealanders are not overly attentive to this area of public policy. They know that if they win over the politicians, media, and opinion leaders, they have a chance of quietly pushing their cause until at some stage in the future it will become a fait accompli.

The NZCPR took a stand against the Maori Party’s Treaty of Waitangi constitution during the last Parliament, not only running a nationwide public information newspaper advertising campaign, but establishing our own Independent Constitutional Review, holding a full submission process, and publishing the findings in a reportA House Divided.

But on-going vigilance is clearly needed. All New Zealanders, who believes in democracy, equal rights, and the Rule of Law, should stand up for our successful unwritten constitution, and defend it against all attempts to manipulate and undermine it. In fact, anyone who considers New Zealand’s one-person one-vote Parliamentary democracy is a cornerstone institution that should be protected, needs to strongly reject all calls for a new “written” constitution, since they are, in essence, attacks on democracy itself.


Would you like to see a new written constitution for New Zealand that enshrines the Treaty of Waitangi?


*Poll comments are posted below.


*All NZCPR poll results can be seen in the Archive.


Click to view x 120


First we must establish which interpretation of the TOW is valid. I’ve read the options and I’m flummoxed. And then I think “Is something written in different times under different circumstances relevant to the NZ we see today. I guess yes. Historically, written law is eternal isn’t it? So the next step is to validate the authentic version. Someone enlighten me. Please. Steve
Equality, no racism which breeds separatism Les
We do not need a new written constitution for New Zealand that promotes part Maori above the rest of the citizens. We need a democratic nation in which the Treaty of Waitangi plays NO part at all. Get rid of it together with all of the cash handouts given to the Iwi elite. Ernest
The Treaty of Waitangi has been blown out of all proportion…how many new translations now? There are no more 100% Maori and we are going to let 15% approx. decide how to create a constitution?????? Deborah
No way. Jill
The Waitangi Tribunal must be disbanded before it causes too much racial division in society. Te Tumu Paeroa is a racist organisation bent on promoting control over Maori land alienation by a elite Kingatangi group. Laurie
Equal rights for all NZ citizens! Donald
We should be going forward as one people.there should no division of past historical origin. Allan
Not at all. The only place for it is in the shredder, which is also a useful place for the aforementioned 3 tossers in the newsletter. Craig
Absolutely Racist !! Who the hell does Palmer think he is?? Perhaps this is based on his failure as a politician!! NZ one country for all regardless of race!! Ron
Ridiculus as they are already been made wealthy with settlements.They are treated the same as the socalled invaders of the country they say they own. When do the payments cease. John
Absolutely not! Sarah
I would like to see an act of parliment that burns the Treaty of Waitangi, along with Geoffrey Palmer, Gareth Morgan and The iwi Leaders group! They’re all a bloody sick people. Des
No way !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Alan
Absolutely no!! Will these nutters never give up? We are one people and it’s long overdue for the much reinvented Treaty to be consigned to history. I really wonder if Palmer is becoming senile as his brain doesn’t seem to be functioning properly. Helen
Not needed…ever! Brian
Foolish and dangerous. Bruce
Definitely not.. our present system works well and as the saying goes, ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’. Plus why would we want a system that does not treat all NZ’ers equally. Caro
Racism at its best. Russell
Maori iwi and tribes have been paid out for so called past grieviances by the way of land or cash settlements. They are not indigenious and I wish they and people of NZ stop calling Maori something they are not. They signed Treaty of Waitangi that we are are all to be treated as one. Wayne
Enough of this, we are maori therefore you owe us breakfast in bed and a chaffeur driven limousine to take us to the pub. The TOW should be burnt and all reference to it or race based privilege should be banned. maori have contributed little or nothing to this country, yet they claim to be gods gift to the world. I for one have had a gutsfull of this racist bullshyte. Stevo
Unless it enshrines the REAL Treaty .. ie: We are all one people!!! Maddi
Certainly not why should a minority have a ruling vote We are one people all New Zealanders. Wendy
Scrap the bloody thing and replace it with a one for all. Peter
Unprintable ! Richard
The treaty has been used and abused. So much has been written and talked about being in the treaty which is absolute garbage. It was written as a simple document for the time of its conception. Elizabeth
Look at the mess in Canada as a result of Pierre Trudeau’s repatriation, a bad idea. I call it Lawyers attempt at Transfer Seeking! N.Curry
I find Palmer’s motives in the area of race relatios and constitutional law to be highly suspect Look at his history. He enters parliament with the Lange government, sets out to get the law re the Treaty of Waitangi and the Waitangi Tribunal established with the claims opened up back to 1840 then retires from politics and goes back to his law practice where he spends the next 20 years using the law he established to line his own pockets. This man has done enormous damage to race relations in NZand we listen to anything further he has to say in this area, especially regarding a so called “written constitution” at our peril. Rather than listen to anything he has to say we should be running him out of town on a rail. Ronmac
As the treaty states that (British) monarch is to be the sovereign of NZ then the treaty obviously can not be part of a written constitution developed from a republic viewpoint. Therefore the treaty cannot exist as part of a republic’s constitution. Clearly then the intent is to rewrite it as a “maori are entitled to whatever they want” clause. That – we do not want, and definitely do not need. One country, one people. Alan
Geoffrey Palmer, wreaked havoc within NZ when he instigated the ‘Treaty of Waitangi Act’. That Act started an escalating racial divide in NZ and this latest move to incorporate the incorrect version of the Treaty of Waitangi into a constitution is blatantly divisive. Te Tiriti o Waitangi is the only document signed by 545 Rangatira and in my view the only document that should be lionised in NZ’s history. Maureen
No. This would give Maori a first status, and a further opportunity for more demands. We are ONE PEOPLE and ONE NATION. Anything else is nothing less than Apartheid. This kowtowing to Maori demands comes about due entirely to having an MMP electoral situation, when a small vocal party can use the race card to achieve its aim of total rule, and therefore dominate any majority party in our Parliament. We can only hope at the next election a choice between two outcomes. 1. A majority Government (Unlikely) 2. A moderate minor party that will not blackmail the governing party!! (Also unlikely) The real alternative is to reform our present electoral system back to a Democracy, which will have all our Members of Parliament duly elected by the vote, and responsible to their electorates. “Hope springs eternal”! Brian
What was written at the Treaty signing is what it is, do not try to re-write this as a what if scenario for the benefit of the early settlers to NZ. Early Maori were firmly entrenched in the “Stoneage” on the arrival of Europeans to NZ. The tribes had not invented the wheel how could they have a social development enough to have a collective agreement to base a constitution on when they are still eating each other. Tom
No never, and if they did our biased governments would write it to favour maoris. They can’t help it, they just love them. Eric
NZ does not need a Constitution and especially does not want another rehash of the Treaty which was never mentioned until Geoff Palmer stuck his nose into it and decided to make an issue that he hoped would give him everlasting fame and memorial. We don’t wish to have Maoris dictating what we can and can’t do and placing a charge to go in their pockets on any resource application or one of a hundred activities we carry out in our daily lives. Get rid of the Maori seats in Parliament and get rid of MMP. If needs be, run a referendum to find how strongly opinion is against this threat to our democracy. Chris
Time for a written constitution enshrining right, responsibility and respect. Written rules better than the opinion of the 61st MP. Stewart
I can’t believe this is even being contemplated….. Nigel
One person one vote. Not some people a vote plus a race base entrenched advantage. Mervyn
The arguments in the Gibbons article are both correct and concerning. Palmer et al arrogantly claim the Treaty means so much more than the words. A written constitution would be a gravy train for lawyers – so it’s no surprise the profession supports it. Thank heavens for Thomas Gibbons and NZCPR. John
Now that John Key has resigned, we now need a political party such as Hobson’s Pledge which has commonsense policies and once and for all, gets rid of Maori seats and all the separatist mumbo-jumbo. How about it Muriel? We certainly do not need Geoff Palmer’s horrid, racist constitution nor any more of his harmful, socialist dogma. Monica
A national Constitution should enshrine the idea that all people are equal before the law. I believe that a New National Constitution is needed. It should not give any “Racial” privileges at all. Maori, in fact, would benefit by a Constitution wherein all people are equal in every respect. The “Treaty” is in fact holding New Zealand back. Why enshrine it in a constitution? A Single Written and Codified Constitution is necessary. The Treaty should in no way be part of a new constitution as Palmer and Butler suggest. It would be a “racially based” document. Bill
Absolutely not !!! Miles
We don’t want or need a written constitution. Far too dangerous. Ann
When are we going to see the Maori Party abolished and treat everyone with equal rights? Peter
I am sick and tied of ex-politicians pontificating on what they think we should be doing. Get out and stay out. Bruce
Absolutely not!! Gillian
No way and certainly not including any reference to the Treaty of Waitangi. David
It is long past time the Treaty of Waitangi was dead and buried just like the vast majority of similarly antiquated documents that have outlived their usefulness. Kerry
Palmer and his socialist friends just do not get it, another attack by a minority attempting to force their views and dreams onto the NZ public. Of course the maoris will support it, that is their way of extracting as much from the majority of NZs population as possible in claims, rights, privilages,(which does not apply to the rest of us) money,the list is endless. people of this country need to show that we will not be dictated to by some activist such as palmer and cohorts creating privilages based on race. Key needs to tell palmer and co it is not going to happen and crawl back in to his hole where he belongs! David
One person – one vote. It is racist to entrench race based governance. Henry
All people are equal – this is apartheid. Sharon
We should all be treated as equal citizens. Colin
Sir Geoffrey Palmer has lived in the academic world for so long he has lost sight of reality and is totally out of touch with the general public. Carol
Absolutely not, very bad idea. Carolyn
It is a cunning part Maori scheme with an intent that is to become the Gadaffi or the ISIS of new Zealand. Like the cannibal ancestors, modern iwi intend to subjugate then dominate and control NZ and make it an anarchy state. More money and power for dirty part Maori lazy schemes. I think their schemes come from the devil himself into iwi minds. theyalready have huge privileges. They should leave and go to Syria if so disgruntled and ungrateful and power hungry. Alastair
Current constitution is fine. Peter
Sir Geoffrey Palmer has been a disaster for race relations in NZ . “Will no one rid us of this troublesome Knight!” Irvine
We had a constitutional review and THE MAJORITY SAID NOT TO CHANGE IT. Geoffrey Palmer has to lot to answer for. When looking at the Treaty people need to look at WHEN it was signed and WHY it was signed by so many tribal elders – all wanting security. Sue
No. The Treaty is too ambiguous and open to various interpretations and a new one wouldn’t be any better. Any new Treaty would heavily favour Maori to the exclusion of others. The general laws are good enough. Sheila
Do we want a racial constitution? Ian
Absolutely not!!! When is this nonsense going to stop. We need New Zealanders working together for the good of the country, not one group expecting special concessions. Sue
The idea of a republic with a constitution is frequently build on the structure of the US. It is struggling however because its constitution is outdated – the writers did not foresee such huge changes in social mores, intermixing between the world’s people, the reduction in the power of religion with broader education, and so on. The varied interpretations are causing a fracture in the society – perhaps it has become a religion in its own right and therefore a basis for gaining power. The power of appointments to the Supreme Court has the fervour of sectarian religion, a danger Mr. Gibbons points out. When a country is attempting to recover from a long period of chaos, such as a civil war, there is a role for a constitution New Zealand society developed on the basis of an equality between people. And there is a rule for that: Treat all other people as you wish them to treat you. I am too cynical to expect that to be the founding principle of a country’s constitution. Case in point – enshrining the privileges of class that have developed from interpretation of the Treaty of Waitangi. Dene
Under NO circumstances!!!! Bruce & Yulene
The tyranny of minority rule. There are now more people of Chinese origin in NZ than Maori. Robert
Should never happen and the tribunal should be disbanded. Gary
Apartheid Fred
Definitely not Lynnette
I have Maori ancestors but I am a New Zealander who believes all are equal and I do not support special rights for one race. Clive
Absolutely not. It would be really good if Geoffry Palmer moved into comfortable retirement. Laurie
Nothing wrong with current situation. Tony
Most definitely not. Don
The unwritten constitution New Zealand has now is adequate and the country does NOT NEED a written constitution. Nor should he Treaty of Waitangi ever be included as part of our constitution. Every citizen should be seen as equal regardless of their skin colour or appearance. JOHN
One of Sir Geoffrey’s former legislative “clean-ups” got rid of the liens law. Immediately big developers hung sub-contractors out to dry. The same careless, emotion based thinking about the treaty would expose NZ to much misery. Hugh
Hell no! We should be steering we’ll clear including such a muddied, misunderstood, and misrepresented document. Kynan
Absolutely no. The damage already done by Key, Smith, Finlayson and others must stop. As for Palmer, an idiot academic, words fail me. When will these demands cease? I understand these PART Maori have now been given control of all the so-called volcanoes in Auckland (unelected too) which encompass huge hectares of recreational and sports grounds. Wake up Mr Key and get rid of the Maori party, listen to Winston and the 85% of non Maori who also have a stake in this country, and owe these greedy Iwi nothing. Carolyn
NO NO NO, Who are these idiots who are trying to fix something that is NOT broken. Athol
No way. Just a bad dream! Richard
When will we be one country, one people? Edward
Palmer and his associates have made a fortunes advising the treaty grievance industry on his version of the law as he sees it.stop him and his academic friends before they case more damage to our race relations and create a very divisive New Zealand. Morrie
The treaty is simply a thorn- in -the- side which should be removed and we do not need a constitution anyway. Harvey
Can someone find a Donald Trump for NZ? Michael
Happy with the status quo. Peter
Abso Bloody lutely not. Before John key was elected the national Party were talking about doing away with Maori seats and winding up the Treaty process. Boy has the worm turned. Frank
Absolutely not!!! Brent
I see that now the Treaty has advanced to a speaking document from a living document. What a load of bs. Documents are not a living or speaking thing. Geoffrey Palmer and his believers should be taken aside and told a few home truths. No the Treaty should absolutely NOT be included in any constitution. Like thousands of New Zealanders I have had enough of all this Maori grab for power and control. Totally sick of it. Mike
Personally, I would like to rip up the so-called ‘TREATY” and flush it down the drains back to the sea from which it came. When will some Government here have the intestinal fortitude to put the whole question to the electorate, or would that simply spark the Revolution.? Better get cracking if that’ is to be an option, for the present state of immigration will soon put the matter to a numerical end, won’t it? Mabel
Palmer has done enormous damage to the country already, we do not need any more. The Treaty should have been abolished many years ago, it belongs in the 19th century and should be left there. Ian
Palmer Butler Morgan, are the last people that should have anything to do with the constitution, as you would know exactly how it would end up, they have done enough damage already. Noel
Racism Terence
We are one people, to do anything only for Maori is racism. Warwick
We are all New Zealanders, this will only lead to an apartheid my family arrived in New Zealand in 1853 and I am very concerned of the race issues now being dragged up. Peter
Keep Palmer away from Wellington. He has already cost us millions! Mark
This article should have wider circulation and be available to those without Facebook. It gives a lot of food for thought and contains information I had not heard of. Emmett
Definately NO. Bill
Absolutely not! We are dealing with a increasing number of undemocratic changes in NZ already. All of these are ruthlessly driven by a small group of elitist Maoris and their minions who show all the hallmarks of a fascist organisation. The agenda is total control over the entire country– lock stock and barrel– and to create a two class society in which everybody who cannot prove any Maori descent will be disadvantaged at every turn and only good enough to be taxed to the hilt to support a Maori minority in perpetuity. A totalitarian state equal to Nazi Germany, where political cultural and racial indoctrination was applied to maintain complete control over society. NZ is in great danger and well on the way to decline into a race based dictatorship. Michael
Absolutely NOT! I cannot believe how far the left wing politicians have gone to undermine our democracy and its right to equality, in exchange for votes that keep them in power. I also can’t believe that the rest of us, the right wing and centre voters, hide our heads in the sand and hope it will go away. It won’t. We will have to stand up for our rights as New Zealand citizens to have fair and equal treatment. before the law. Joyce
What is needed is a campaign explaining in simple terms exactly what a written treaty would mean to all people and highlighting the fact that it would result in judges making laws rather than parliament. simple explanations without any attempt at extreme views would make people more receptive to listening. Phil
We should all be new Zealanders with the same rights as each other. Graham
The majority of the public are not aware of these clandestine efforts to give more and more power to “maori”. Any attempt to impose a written constitution should go to a binding referendum. Tony
A disaster in the making if they get their way. Ryan
NZ should stop going back to the treaty as it is history. We are so multi cultural now and any ‘preferential treatment of any group of people’ is unfair. Bernard
As I have said many times before we are one country with everyone having equal rights. No more, no less. Tom
It’s time the treaty and all its claims and hangers on was scrapped. Clark
Unconscionable proposition, and an appalling thought. Chris
Would create ever more racial division for sure. Rod
Never Peter
Imo the gravy train has gone on long enough – we should be one nation. Con
Not in the context of this article. I believe that our system works well as it is, so why fix it if it works. Sir Geoffrey is typical if those who think they know better for everyone. They have no life and want to see how they can work a system where they manage and control the populous. He was never a good politician, so why on earth do we afford him the time of day in forcing his beliefs on us all. Audrey
N.Z. is SUPPOSED to have ONE LAW for EVERYONE so why should maori have more partnership than others cause once the,ve got that LOOK OUT. Cindy
No wonder lawyers have such a bad rep in general … Dennis
The maori by accepting British Citizenship accepted British law and became responsible to it in all its forms and dealings full stop! Like every other New Zealander! Ttheodorus
No, Sir Geoffrey Palmer has not gone mad – he knows exactly what he is doing. As a writer of the law he nationalising this country; he knows it and should be stopped. There is no one more dangerous to our country than this man. Don
It is the treaty of Waitangi which is causing all the problems. Keeping the Maori from developing self worth. The elite white Maori which is benefiting by keeping the remainder poor and spreading al the propaganda. John
WE have more than enough racial discrimination wwritten into our country now. Don’t need any more racial division to create a racially divided nation, next will be the Muslim induction. Ian
We should be one people in a free speaking democracy. Alan
Leave it alone and don’t change it. If “treaty” claims go bring paid out the country will be a third world country we will be broke and the feww who “RULE” will be Top Dogs and everyone else pawns if nothing else. Laurel
Sir Geoffrey has once again shown that he is an arrogant intellectual f***wit. Paul
Agree with everything you have written. Bob
We do not want a new written constitution. Especially we do not want one that “enshrines the treaty of Waitangi as it is misinterpreted by the Maori supremacists. Geoffrey Palmer had already caused more than sufficient damage to this country with his Resource Management Act without pressing for this idiocy as well. Rob
Absolutely not. Pam
No way. I would go to war to protect our rights and freedoms from academic zealots like Geoffrey Palmer. He should be rejected from all avenues of lawmaking. He is quite insane and the RMA, also one of his illegitimate brain children, has caused so much economic damage to New Zealand that he should be charged with fiscal vandalism. And now he is engaged in Constitutional Vandalism and disenfranchising, by racial discrimination, of all non Maori New Zealanders. Dianna
When are people going to get it into their heads that all New Zealanders are equal and we all have the same rights and priveledges. Maoris never ratified any deal with the Morioris, they just killed them or chased them to the Chatham Islands. Now the boot is on the other foot. Dennis
It would be unfair to the majority of the People of New Zealand and would further create an Anti attitude to those people of Maori descent who do not participate in these agendas. Rob
The paper those reports and suggestions are written on should be used as toilet paper. Johan
Definitely no written constitution. You only have to look at those countries which have this (USA is a prime example) to see how the country is run to be put off completely. We are doing very nicely without the interference of the legal fraternity. Lets keep it so!!! Brian
The treaty is so far out of date, it is no longer relevant.. Andrew
The last thing we need is a written constitution enabling unelected judges to determine our future. Our current constitutional arrangement with a democratically elected legislature making the major decision works well. Terry
HELL NO! – it would be an eternal gravy train for the iwi parasites, Gareth Morgan would probably insert a clause banning cats and making the use of 1080 compulsory.As for Geoffrey Palmer and Andrew Butler – the fact that they are lawyers says it all – they would complicate the whole process to such an extent that you would have to employ a lawyer to be able to understand it – like the RMA, it would be a fat bit for his legal buddies. It has been said that the only difference between lawyers and rats is there are some things that rats will never do! The Treaty is long past its use by date – it should have been ceremonially burned to usher in the 21st century. Any attempt to formulate a written Constitution that uses this vague and outmoded document as its basis should be avoided like the plague. It represents a clear and present danger to our unity as a nation and needs to be dealt with as such – along with its proponents. Scott
NO NO NO >.. Dianne
Absolutely not. Touchie-feelie academics of both ‘races’ will use this to create a republic and enshrine the Treaty rort forever – a highly expensive and totally unnecessary nonsense. Ian Wishart’s ‘The Great Divide’ should be compulsory reading in gaining an understanding of the Treaty, its background and the taxpayer funded swindle it has become. David
No – look at the mess we’re in now with treaty. Laurie
NO!! Paddy
This will end up another “gravy train” based on race. We are going backwards in relation to the concept of democracy. All citizens are equal and it should stay that way. Kevin
We do not need a constitution. Americas troubles dealing with guns show tge problems that can arise years later because a constitution is a fixed moment in time. Don’t mess up whats working fine. J I
No bloody way we are all NZers who thought of this nonsence Peter
Everything about Sir Geoffrey Palmer is the result of his endless protestations as a squirming, cringing and conscience – stricken neo-liberal failure. Get a life! Peter
The legal profession is by it’s nature disputatious and not safe to give too much power to. Maoris are already a privileged section of our society but ignore that with their continuing demands. Anon
Parliament must remain the sovereign head of NZ law and law making; NOT THE JUDICIARY. John
Utter and stupid rot when are going to see sanity ack in this country not good to see Maori so prosperious on tax payers money it has to STOP. Russell
We are one people. We are now a multi- cultural society. The Treaty of Waitangi has little to offer. David
Most certainly not. Rob
We are all one PEOPLE no matter what race. Ken
Geoffrey always was a dangerous egghead. Jim
Absolutely not! You only need to recall Justice Lord Cooke of Thorndon decided his interpretations or feelings mattered, rather than Law, to never want to hand any ultimate power to lawyers. You do not need to retain the Queen as Head of State under our unwritten constitution – NZ can be a Democracy without English royalty. Peter
Who does Palmer think he is ? Another trick with him the National Party and the Maori Party. Dishonesty after Dishonesty. Lance
It will divide the Nation and raise up a ‘hate’ generation. Dave
Definitely not. The Queen is the sovereign and must not be replaced by another undefined heap of Treaty rights. Colin
Most ‘white natives’ are proud of their own histories, many of which have undergone injustices in their formative years. They have a great distate fo the present push for a biased constitution put together by Sir Geoffrey Palmer and other ‘white radicals. While disagreeing with many maori customs yet being told by the PC group that “this is our culture,’ I do admire the Maori way of debating issues before reaching a consensus. Rather these ‘white radicals’ put their effort into engaging with existing ‘;white native’ communities so that a bottom up rather than a top down conversation can take place about the need for and content of any suggested constitution. Alan
Under commie Key’s administration, this problem will not go away! Please vote N.Z. CONSERVATIVE, or N.Z FIRST at the next election. Sad thing is, if the ‘Treaty’ had been incorporated [Hobsons pledge] in a written constitution back in 1841, we would not have given the radicals & lefties the opportunity to re-write a modern version to suit them-selves. A.G.R.
Equality for all rather than dominance from a minority. Peter
Doing that would be an absolute disaster. Peter
no no & NO Margaret
Can we get Sir Geoffrey to undertake a DNA test to see if he is related to the treaty signatories. He may well be. Steve
Another ridiculous suggestion from greedy Maori. Peter
No No No No Jeff
And get rid of Geoffrey Palmer instead! Robert
What has gone wrong in this world how can a constitution that gives more rights to one racist section of New Zealanders be acceptable to most of the country. David
Enough is ENOUGH… Stop all this PC and racist crap now. One race – we are all NZ’ers. Bruce
I do not trust Sir Jeffery. Arthur
NEVER!! Neville
Never – Never – NEVER !!!! Elayne
I know how NZ is governed. I learnt it at school. It was very easy to understand. Anthony
The Treaty of Waitangi as an historical document should be placed in a museum and left there. It has NO place in the world on 2016. Jim
Another attempt elitists to tell us what to do. Barry
I’m totally opposed to Geoffrey Palmer and any of his flaky camp followers having any say whatsoever in the political future of New Zealand. I have no Maori ancestors and I’ve no wish to become a second class citizen in my own country after having been a law abiding, tax paying, racially tolerant NZ resident for over sixty years. The Palmer/Butler proposal will fill me with despair for our future if it gains any traction. Martin
No no no Paul
It would be a disaster. Roger
ABSOLUTELY NOT. The treaty is an outdated agreement that is long past its use by date. Robbie
No The Treaty claims should not have happened but they did unfortunately and will become a part of NZ history. Let ‘s move on as one nation with equal rights for all New Zealand ‘s. Margaret
How many times do New Zealanders have to say this. NO NO. NO. Where are the politicians with the balls to cut this PC crap and represent New Zealanders, no just one eyed racist political activists. Maybe the RACE that wants everything is only doing it to hand on to the Indigenous Moiori people. Graeme
We have far too much race based law. Let’s make racism illegal. PLEASE!! Peter
The Littlewood Treaty was the only true wording and it has been conveniently hidden.. Most of our history has been rewritten in favour of Iwi excluding any European input. Monty
WELL DONE Thomas Gibbons, “Disingenuos ” sums up concisely the content intent of the proposal under discussion. Jim
A written constitution sounds s great idea in having set of rules to live by. However those rules will need to be interpreted and that will be by unelected and undismisive judges who can and WILL be subject to their own activist agenda. We must at all times keep Parliament as the top dog one who can be controlled by the people. Robin
Never. Not while I draw breath!!! There is going to be trouble if this stupidity is not halted, and the “maori” are permitted to continue down this path to disaster. Neil
It would be the end of democratic government and a giant step towards Maori Sovereignty and the loss of individual constitutional rights for each and every ‘non-Maori’ New Zealander – a disaster that must not happen. Russell
It would be a disaster for New Zealand and all non-Maori citizens. Sir Geoffrey Palmer is already responsible for creating racial conflict , perhaps in perpetuity, with the stupidity of his creation of the Waitangi Tribunal, the settlement of claims back to 1840, historical revisionism and the introduction of principles as well as assisting with an interpretation of the Treaty that differs from the original document. He is a danger to New Zealand and all New Zealanders. Tom
A thousand “No” Robert
I believe most kiwis are suffering Treaty fatigue, and also think the Waitangi Tribunal is way past its use by date. You cannot be the only jurisdiction formulating legislation based on race. Its ridiculous. John
Not only did Sir Geoffrey burden the country with Treaty Principles, but also the legislative gem known as the RMA. This has essentially brought NZ to a standstill. Richard
Political parties buying votes has created this situation. Sir G Palmers Bill of Rights was also poor legislation. There is a real danger that Key will buy it. John
Comment not printable. Russ
Never should this prceed if this happens then i would suggest to all kiwwis to be on alert. Ken
What and have all of my rights as a person born in NZ, not on your life. Murray
Such a constitution would enable apartheid in reverse to become wide spread, and the present government is doing its best in that respect Peter
As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Barbara
This would just become another gravy train like the RMA. The cost of such bureaucracy that is only designed to line the pockets of lawyers is shameful. Chris
The status quo should prevail. Ron
Not likely. John
The “Treaty” was and still is a very simple one giving “Maori” equal rights with all the settlers. It would be totally wrong to enshrine racist clauses into any constitution. It is high time NZ governments got on with governing for all New Zealanders and kept race out of the equation. Graeme
Palmer, Butler and Finlayson are three of a kind – ambitious misguided pompous pedantic prats! Typical of those self-important legal-eagle types, they seek to extend their powers and those of the judiciary. While we call them legal-eagles they are more akin to vultures – pecking away at the body public. They are decidedly dangerous in their aim to take control away from the government – thereby denying electoral control – and putting it in the hands of the judiciary who, once appointed, are responsible to nobody. The inclusion of the Treaty in a constitution would be calamitous. The original meaning of this well-intentioned treaty has been distorted, re-written and buggered to an unrecognisable degree. It is described as a “living document” which simply means that it will become further distorted according to the whim and fancy of maori activists so as to advance their aims of taking-over total control of New Zealand. Auntie Podes
Definitely NOT, as it will put the majority in a disadvantage in favour of MAORI INTERESTS. Personally, I believe that it is high time that the whole affair is put to rest. Roll on the next election where we will have a say in form of a vote. Frank
We need to move forward and I can see no reason for a divided – non equal New Zealand. One law for all. Leon
Does Palmer really want to start a civil war? Because that is exactly what he is suggesting. Michael
Based on his past record I wouldn’t support anything recommended by Jeffy Palmer. Rex
We were asked this a year or two ago and the answer was an overwhelming NO. Even worse the full results were not widely published. NO RACIST POLITICS OR CONSTITUTION. Terry
Many years ago the Treaty of Waitangi achieved what it was set up to do. We all need to move on and stop the grievance industry which will tear the country apart if left unchecked. Richard
We are over legislated already. Jill
Didn’t Palmer do enough damage inventing the “principles of the treaty” ? HANS
Certainly not. Messy as the “rules” may be, and relevance of the Queen as our head of state, we should definitely not enact a constitution that favours one race over all the other different groups who inhabit this country. Ron
Total rubbish, get rid of Palmer, he was shocking in parliament. Graeme
NZ first, like them or hate them, is the only barrier left to protect New Zealanders rights, as one people under law. Bruce
I believe that this would enable the authors of any new constitution to twist the words of the original Treaty to mean something completely different which would give sovereignty and power to Maori and only Maori. I will not agree to this under any circumstances. Kate
It would be a diplomatic disaster for all New Zealand citizens. Walter
We need to get the correct historic facts of this country, like the original history books that most Govt institutions have removed from the shelves, BACK into the schools so the kids learn real truths & not fed glorified BS laid out by PC liberals .N.Z was not a Pacific paradise pre European, they where protein deficient, short lived & struggled to thrive. The where forever living in fear of their lives from their fellow inhabitants. English settlement was welcomed by most Maori as it bought new innovations to them in a thousand different ways, mainly introduced food & tools & protection. We must remember Maori were one of the last stone age neolithic peoples on the planet ,why would they want to return to that. They couldn’t even boil water. Allen
The Treaty of Waitangi is a out of date and should not be enshrine in any written constitution for New Zealand. Are we going to be one people or not. A constitution should be written by the people for the people. Robert
This is a classic case of special interests wanting to line their pockets. A vote of ALL the people should be consulted before this goes forward. I doubt seriously a majority of Kiwis would support this. Hilary
no.no.no Anthony
Maori already have control in almost all significant areas of our society. Special rules for the few is called apartheid. Jasmine
NO – NO – NO By all means an authoritative text book endorsed by the Law Society to assist in guiding law practitioners and citizens alike, but dont let that apartheid agenda mongering Palmer fellow anywhere near it. Having just got rid of one lascivious fisting, manipulative communist from our shores and our Parliament and good riddance to her, we are confronted with what a NZ author (now living in Belgium) has previously published as a “kinky deviant” communist, who would cause entrenched institutionalized apartheid and distort Hobson’s peaceable intentions. Beware that the Labor Party is fighting the grime reaper for survival of its outmoded divisive dogma, certainly it lacks funds to support itself, so this so called constitutional review is hardly more than a troughing exercise to maintain the lead communist troughers on a state or institutional grant sustenance, as they drive their democracy slaughtering agenda toward sovereign collapse and a handover to (communist) New World Order, with lawyer manipulation of the ignorant natives role. The arrogance of these communist troughing academics is they believe, not only they have superior intellect that bestows on them the right to overlord all the educated citizens of their democratic rights but they presume to assume royal like powers of governance entitlement. This treasonous intent hardly warrants a title like Sir,. Let us not forget that Palmer lies in the same bed as Little and let us consign him and his agenda to the same refuse pile of failed history. God preserve us and all we hold dear from the destruction of these marxist fools. Richard
Democracy is under attack at both national and local level with attempts to introduce unelected Iwi representatives to influencial areas of local and national government. These should be resisted at all cost. Bryan
Hidden agendas all the time. What is wrong with one set of rules for all no race no colour implied. Neil
No way, no one race should have any precedence. So many races make up New Zealand why should one have any precedence ? Ian
No Way ……forever …Madness. Racist Palmer disappoints me amazingly.Cannot Mr Palmer retire gracefully !!!. One People One Nation. Maori will NEVER be satisfied.ever. Stuff the Treaty. Very divisive. NEVILLE
A recipe for more racial division, delay, and court costs. Mark
The treaty is dividing the nation now and to enshrine it in a constitution would only make it worse.it is an historical piece of our past,nothing more nothing less and the re invention of the meaning of the treaty by modern day historians and others is destroying the unity of this country. wwhen is some government going to have the courage to define what percentage blood one has to have to determine who is entitled to call themselves a maori? Chris
Which Treaty? The real one or the Maori version? Terry
Maori domination is becoming more frightening by the day. Albie
Absolute nonsense – unelected Judges deciding our Laws rather than our elected representatives in Parliament – we are meant to be ONE people – this is more racist nonsense that the rest of the world is moving away from – yet we here have to put up with it every day – and it is increasing. Hylton
Palmer is a person of widely diverging double standards and should not be trusted. It is probable that his proposal is no more than a devious plan for personal gain. Imagine NZ judiciary with its diverse standards having a power over our lives transcending that of our elected parliament. And remember that Palmer is largely responsibility for today’s misinterpretation of the Treaty of Waitangi. John
This is the thin end of the wedge. Barbara
It would totally undermine elected parliament. John
No way! I’m really sick and tired of hearing all this about Maori rights. We are meant to be a ONE nation – this is dividing us even more. So when is someone going to do something about this? Seems its all talk and no action. It’s not the country I want to live in. People will say ‘well, go away then’ but I am used to a one nation from where I come from. It works. This isn’t a democracy – these Acts, Rules, are decided for us without asking us first what we want. Kerin
It’s time the Treaty was archived! Frank
Absolutely not. Te Tiriti is a simple black and white document. If it were to be enshrined in our constitution, certain factions would be pushing to enshrine the mythical TOW principles of partnership and other such nonsense. All mention of Ti Tiriti should be abolished from NZ legislation, and it certainly should NOT be used as part of the Constitution. Michelle
Never, Why is main stream Media not picking up on all this they are quit, so who is telling them to keep there mouths shut. Geoff
This must be resisted at all costs. Bryan
The thought of non elected judges being the law makers is appalling. Too many now put their personal agenda ahead of an unbiased interpretation of the law. Willy
I would like to see the Treaty o Waitangi written out of all law and treated as an historic document with no legal standing. Murray
If it ain’t broke don’t try to fix it! And we don’t ned a constitution. Anyway the maoris weren’t here first. They just cannibalized themselves and those that were here. before them. Kath
This gives unfair advantage to Maori to the detriment of all others. Geoffrey Palmer should be ignored. Gareth
No for the greater good and rights of all NZ citizens. Norm
Palmer has done too much damage to this country already. Kevin
This Racism is going to get worse if it is not stopped, we are all New Zealand citizens and no one is above the other. Going back to tribal war is a sure sign of ignorance so lets cut it out now. Brian
I have no wish to live in a country that practices aprtheid, and this is the ultimate result, if not the intention, of this proposal. Racial divisions are to be strongly discouraged whenever and wherever possible. Tony
Leave things as they are. Trust lawyers (really??) to attempt to create something that will only benefit lawyers. Alan
Definitely never. Ian
No way! The Treaty today divides New Zealand society more than any other factor. It currently has no legal status and it should never be enshrined in a written constitution. Michael
Every club I have ever belonged to have tried to alter the constition at most AGM.s What a waste of time! Dave
All NZ citizens have equal rights. Who is a maori? Dave
Definitely not..anything with race based connotations must be avoided. Wilfred
The majority of New Zealander’s risk losing their democratic rights and sovereignty to a small select group of people who already have the same rights and privileges as any other citizen. This “push” to change our constitution is outrageous and I believe will eventually racial divide, which I already believe has commenced. Avery sad day indeed for NZ. For goodness sake when is common sense going to prevail? Chris
All NZer’s must remain equal under the law –no race based privileges. Keeping the Queen as the head of the state denies demigods their power. Lois
A big no to any race based superiority. One person one vote. Alan
Absolutely not. Anything that has Palmer or morgan’s names attached to it should be soundly rejected. This country needs neither lawyers nor moralists determining its future. Look also at what a mess Palmer made of the US ship visit when he held the reins in Lange’s (no better) convenience absence in the Islands. Graeme
Our country needs to be unified not divided and race is not an issue for politics with so many of our citizens of mixed race – they can be proud New Zealanders. Carole
It would merely enshrine APARTHEID in NZ. Which version of the Treaty would be used? What is wrong with academics like Geoffrey Palmer and nutters like Gareth Morgan? What is their agenda? Geoff
No Never. Richard
Not the way the Treaty is now being applied! Stuart
Hell no. We have already seen enough evidence of irrational judicial decisions to be wary of being at their mercy. Colin
Don’t tamper with a sacred document please! June
Absolutely no way! James
Maori should be very careful about pushing the NZ public a step too far and thereby losing everything they have gained through duplicity and extortion. Robert
Just further evidence of Maori takeover by stealth promoted by warped or has been politicians. Don
It would be a disaster. Bruce
Absolutely not …as this treaty rubbish has broken the financial back of the country , and made many , wealthy… including the multitude of parasitic lawyers; of the backs of the tax payer , this rubbish has to be stopped , otherwise it will never end , a bit like the rates fiasco ….a bottomless pit of tax payers money , stolen from us , by supposedly legal means / law , and we have no say in the matter , with what ever government is in at the time . Roy
No.. no comment needed. Olive
Palmer has been instrumental in destroying this country! Dave
Unbelievably stupid New Zealand does not need a constitution. Les
The treaty has little to do with the democracy of the country. Barry
Not in the future interest of all New Zealanders. Claire
We don’t need to enshrine apartheid. Frank
Don’t do it! Such a written constitution would be a recipe for ongoing racial division and bitterness. Peter
I would prefer no constitution at all, especially if one is race based – the Governmental system we have at present(Although a little flawed with too many members) is adequate. JOHN
The Treaty of Waitangi is already enshrined enough into our laws. The current constitution arrangement works fine. Andrew
Knew the racists would not leave the constitution alone-they want N.Z. enshrined into an Apartheid nation. Kay
Double no from this household. Nev Kathy
20 years ago I met a Maori man on the interisland ferry. He said that they should burn the Treaty of Waitangi as it will cause a tremendous amount of division in the country. He said to me his father said to him there are only 2 ways to get ahead in life. Your brains or your brawn. Sadly his predictions are now very true with the absurd claims by Maori getting worse by the day. Don’t let that sod Sir Geoffrey Palmer or anyone else like anywhere near a written constitution which will only give more importance to Maori grievances under their twisted version of the Treaty of Waitangi. Colin
1 land, 1 people, 1 law Anne
You couldn’t print it. Chris
Absolutely NOT! Why should a minority of NZers be able to dictate to the majority, which is the path that NZ is slowly being dragged down. William
One nation- one people. Don
Good Lord NO! There is enough strife and disorder without enshrining such matters in a “constitution”. The notion is absurd!! Andrew
Certainly not. David
We needd a Trump to educate and rally the people against all this crap. Kevin
Time to get rid of the Maori Mortgage. David
The time to stop this treaty nonsense was years ago yet stupid non maori like Palmer want to keep giving it life for their own agenda. Brian
The “Treaty of Waitangi” is a pathetic outdated peace of rubbish promoted to create a “Chosen Race” in New Zealand. It has no place in a democratic New Zealand. Burn it at the nearest Marai! Wally
Absolutely not. Over time our weak politicians have systematically bastardised the original great Treaty of Waitangi agreement in their self serving effort to appease racial political parties. Beware New Zealand! Stuart
All about power and control for the same old greenies. John
NO more preferential treatment of Maori (which was NOT the intention of the Treaty). John
Fortunately, at my age, I won’t be around long enough to see the results of what Palmer advocates. Nor will he. It’s our descendants who will suffer the consequences – another African like failed state – perhaps even another Zimbawi! Alan
Absolutely not! Bernard
I believe in one law for All with no privelige for any race. John
Hasn’t idiot racist Palmer done enough harm in NZ already? Mike
Unmitigated PC B/S of the worst kind and based on fiction. ROB
One people, one race – the human race. One rule for all. Chris
Our constitution needs to be dependent of any section of the population as it is for all people and should be flexible enough to updated if necessary. Elaine
Palmer has done enough damage to this country. He must not be allowed to win this one. Its staggering that he is still trying to have his way after his proposals have been roundly rejected in the past. What part of “NO” does he not understand. David
Abso-bloody-lutely NOT!! That wilfully misinterpreted Treaty by racist Maori elite has no bearing whatsoever on any future written constitution. Tony
Why “fix” something that isn’t broken? The status quo protects the rights of all New Zealanders. We must ALL be treated as equal citizens of NZ. Cherry
Certainly not. Palmer is a closet communist from way back and the increasingly non-democratic, underhand methods of part-Maori control and ambition and greed is leading New Zealand down a road of inevitable disaster. Paul
Stop the racist appeasement to Maori. Kevin
…Corruption and MORE corruption in NZ by the ‘iwi’ elite and all their traitor mates….WAKE UP and sort this out…..!!! Chris
Racist mongrels. Greg
Words continue to fail me when I listen to the radical and racist requests which promotes the old adage of “divide and conquer”! Joe
I strongly object to unelected judges telling us what our rights are. Wah
We get along just fine as we are. Graeme
No way. This is the thin end of the wedge. Bring back the percentage rule of blood to determine who is ‘a Maori’. It should never have been changed to the present system of ‘identifying’ as Maori. Alan
Palmer is an academic idiot, so far into the abstruse, he cannot see how badly he’s already damaged our society, and yet wants to inflict more. He should be de-knighted – he never earned it anyway – and charged with crimes against the Kiwi way of life. Jim
We need to stop this slippery slope of potential Maori control of all aspects of life in NZ. Murray
Sir Geoffrey has gone mad. John
To most non-paw people a constitution is not a necessity. hey have to concentrate on their own well-being. The Treaty of Waitangi is a millstone around the neck of the country. Too much emphasis is placed on it. The treaty is the most racist document in the country. It should be investigated by the Race Conciliator (give him/her something useful to do). Tony
Under no circumstances. Why change something that isn’t broken. Kevin
Under no circumstances! The current situation serves the whole, not the part! I am amazed that SIR Geoffrey Palmer accepts a knighthood, then wants tl o turn New Zealand into a republic That it will happen in the future is a given, but not before we become one people, which we are not now! Kevan
The idiots who keep trying to put Iwi infront of KIWI are driving this country to civil insurrection which will inevitably lead to violent reaction in which this self-serving minority will bear the brunt of the majorities anger. Time for many to open their eyes observe what has happened so many times in the past. This whole issue has nothing to do with equality it has everything to do with self interest, money NOT mana. Kelvin
One need look no further than the Supreme Court in US to see what might happen here if we go down this path. Its judicial activism has effectively taken power from the people and placed it in the hands of 9 unelected judges. John
No, because who knows what mischief will be afoot by plot and wile and avarice in want to pillage state coffers for ”redress” of grievances real or imagined and chanced upon leverings. L
The relentless seditious ravings of Palmer and his gang must be strongly resisted. Let’s start by removing their noses from the feeding trough of public monies. John
The Treaty should not be superior law. Kathleen
Can’t some informed person take these ideas to the UN and get some worlwide support to help us maintain our democracy without racist non majority rule creeping further in NZ. What about the existing Treason legislation for suggested action to bring these guys to heal. Ian
One person-one vote. Does a one eighth Maori get a full Maori vote or one eight? Rob
No democratic country in the world would knowingly create a legal situation were a minority (the Maori) can rule the majority. It will be an apartheid regime. Remember South Africa! Thomas
Absolutely not. Albert
Absolutely not. Tim
We do not need this at all and would cause so much more unrest in the country. Renee
A constitution as a framework for guiding how an entity is run, is what a company has. Entities that today we know as Nation States historically had far more flexible, organic arrangements. “Unwritten” Constitutional Frameworks continue to far more dynamic and fit for purpose than those of the type favoured this past century or so. The USA, with its Constitution is more like an 18th century conglomerate. It’s striking the similarities between the USA and the East India company. The USA flag is even modeled on the East India Company flag. Ian
No thanks. Levonne
There’s 2 issues here – having a written Constitution, and writing that treaty-that-really-isn’t into that Constitution. I’ll pass on the first for now. As for the second, would the 1840 cession of sovereignty to the Crown go into the Constitution or the fabrications of the past 40 years? I suspect the latter…….. Barend
Absolutely not – the Treaty of Waitangi should be not be in our constitution. It has done its job and should be left alone. Colin
Grief – imagine the damage that judges would do if they got their hands on the country’s law making powers. The Chief Justice has already given the foreshore and seabed to Maori – what next? Brenda
These ideas of Palmer and Butler are dangerous. No wonder the Law Foundation gave them all that money – their ideas would not only introduce Maori supremacy but it would elevate the legal profession into an elite class as well! Peter
No, no, no – reinventing the Treaty is doing enough damage as it is. Don
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – our constitution works well and should be left alone! William