Greens will struggle to be heard over the top of Turei controversy on campaign trail video

ROBERT KITCHIN/STUFF

Metiria Turei arrives at Wellington airport where she answered questions about her leadership position.

OPINION: The Green Party is backing Metiria Turei for now after the party imploded over her DPB admission.

But they may not thank her after a few weeks on the campaign trail where the only message getting through is Turei's condoning of welfare fraud.

The rest of the Greens platform has been almost totally drowned out by the noise surrounding Turei.

Just a few short weeks ago Metiria Turei was soaring high on the adulation from her controversial speech.
PHIL WALTER/GETTY IMAGES

Just a few short weeks ago Metiria Turei was soaring high on the adulation from her controversial speech.

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The Greens have played into National's narrative about a destabilising "circus on the left" - just as Nat MPs were bracing for a big lift in the polls for Labour under Jacinda Ardern.

And they have forced Ardern's hand - on Tuesday she was hammering the message "I am stability", and that means putting even more distance between herself and the Greens over coming days.

RNZ

Two Green MPs will have to quit after their co-leader Metiria Turei refused to step down.

Turei has polarised not just New Zealand but her own caucus.

The ugly infighting has exposed real divisions in the Greens - and those divisions are not just over Turei, but about what the party stands for.

The Greens have for years leveraged off the Green "brand" and all that stands for - sustainability, the environment, clean green New Zealand - while spending much of its time talking about anything but.

The two Green MPs who last night walked away from the party, Kennedy Graham and David Clendon, are the voice of those who vote for the Green brand, rather than the Green party.

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Them going public has torn the caucus apart.

Both deserve the punishment dished out by the party for disloyalty. But neither merited the ugly and brutal backchat from the party as lazy and disloyal.

Their disquiet at the attention sought by Turei will be reflective of many voters who are attracted to climate change activist Graham's ideal of the Green brand. Turei is a big turn off to many of them.

That may not bother the party after its euphoria over the initial surge in the polls following Turei's benefit fraud confession.

But there was not much for the party to celebrate on Tuesday night.

 - Stuff

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