Abolishing Māori seats would spark 'incredibly divisive debate' - Simon Bridges

National Party leader Simon Bridges says abolishing Māori electoral seats would cause "an incredibly divisive debate" that "wouldn't be worth the trouble". 

It comes after the ACT Party called for the abolition of the seats.

"Formally speaking [National's] position has been over time they should go on principal. The reality is that would be an incredibly divisive debate, and we wouldn't do that before we felt that Māoridom had moved on," Mr Bridges said on TVNZ1's Q+A last night. 

He said National had a "nuance position on what is actually is a pretty chunky complex issue, where frankly the division that would be caused... wouldn't be worth the trouble". 

When asked by host Q+A host Corin Dann who should make the decision on whether to keep the Māori seats, Mr Bridges said it should be a "deeply consultative process with Māori". 

He described the seats as "constitutionally incredibly significant", and thought if there were to be any changes it would need to go through a referendum process. 

It comes after ACT called for the abolition of the seats. Source: Q+A