Grant Robertson comments on the suggestion by Te Pumautanga o Te Arawa that all future Finance Ministers should also be Treaty Negotiation Ministers also.
Dr Cullen has made admirable progress, and should be congratulated for it. I suspect his job was made easier by the fact that he got to replace Mark Burton who showed the same skills at Treaty Negotiations as he did with Electoral Finance.
I would not tie the job into the Finance Minister job (even though Bill English would do a fine job) but I agree with Grant you do want Ministers who are motivated to do the job and have some mana. National has at least three people who could contribute very well to the portfolio.
Chris Finlayson is the current spokesperson and has worked in the Treaty area professionally before he entered Parliament, and has good relations with many prominent Iwi leaders. Georgina te Heuheu is a former member of the Waitangi Tribunal, and was NZ’s first female Maori lawyer. The other person whom I would advocate should be included (I think the portfolio is important enough one should have one or maybe two associate Ministers) is Tim Groser. Tim is a highly experienced negotiator in the trade field, and at the end of the day a large component of Treaty settlements is a commercial negotiation.