Green Party rejects MP Kennedy Graham's bid to re-enter the party
The Green Party has rejected Kennedy Graham's request to be put back on the party's list following Metiria Turei's resignation.
Graham and fellow MP David Clendon earlier this week resigned at short notice from the party's 14-member caucus over the former Greens co-leader's benefit fraud admission. The men had threatened to quit if the co-leader didn't resign.
But their colleagues rallied around Turei, voting on Tuesday to block the pair from future caucus and strategy meetings and to remove them from the party list ahead of the election.
On Wednesday, Turei did step down, saying the "unbearable" scrutiny of her family was too much.
Graham then approached the party asking to be reconsidered for the election, while Clendon said he wasn't interested in coming back.
"I have some regrets about not doing another term but really I'm ready to just draw a line under it and go and find something else interesting to do," Clendon said on Thursday.
"Ken has a great deal to offer, he is highly motivated to continue his work, especially around climate change and I absolutely support him in that.
"Yes there is pain and hurt and anger and I acknowledge that, but personally I think I'll maintain some of the relationships most important to me."
In a statement on Saturday morning, the party said it had declined Graham's request to return as a list candidate for next month's election.
"After careful consideration of the facts and Kennedy's submission, the Executive concluded that he had breached the Party's Candidate Code of Conduct in a serious manner, and therefore decided to exclude Mr Graham from the Party's pool," the statement said.
Party co-convenor Debs Martin thanked Graham for his years of service.