The Green Party co-leader tells us about becoming a politician, sniffing her kids, bubblegum jeans and more in this week’s episode of FIRST.
“I’m still trying to figure out if I want to be a politician,” Marama Davidson says. It’s not something you really expect to hear a politician say – we tend to assume anyone in parliament must be there as the result of some lifelong political masterplan. But as the Green Party’s co-leader admits, being an MP is “a massive honour … but it’s a weird life as well.”
For Davidson, politics is a career she was encouraged to pursue during her ten years working at the Human Rights Commission, including serving as chief panelist for an inquiry into domestic violence and child abuse. She first stood for the Greens in the 2013 Ikaroa-Rāwhiti by-election, and entered parliament as a list MP in 2015 following the resignation of Russel Norman. By 2018 she was elevated to co-leader after the resignation of Metiria Turei, and last year became the country’s first ever minister for the prevention of family and sexual violence.
So what’s her advice to others thinking of becoming a politician, those who might be in the same position she was 10 years ago? “I wouldn’t recommend it as a goal in and of itself,” Davidson says. “I keep saying to people, think about what you want to do for the world. Being a politician might be a part of that – or not.”
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