Willow-Jean Prime is buoyant after being named the highest Māori on the Labour list announced this morning. But the Labour candidate for the Northland general seat says issues are of much greater importance than any individual candidate.
"Yes, I received the good news this morning that I'm high on the Labour list so yeah bring it on! Some are happy and some are sad and that's politics. But it's of utmost importance that we focus on the election at hand and not on individuals. Because the issues are of much greater importance than any individual candidate."
A Far North district councilor, Willow-Jean contested the Northland electorate for Labour in the 2014 election and was the Labour candidate in the 2015 by-election after Mike Sabin vacated the seat.
She says, "I know that it's not easy to enter parliament and get votes. But I've toiled long and hard with the belief that I can bring benefits to all of our people and I take this as an acknowledgment of my hard work."
Willow-Jean is also pregnant with her second baby expected to arrive in August. But it's a situation Labours' 16th ranked list member is used to.
"Yes it's our second baby and they seem to arrive in election years. So I know how to campaign during pregnancy because I did the same in the 2015 by-election here in Northland when our first baby was only a week old. I know Winston (Peters) is looking to hold the seat but its an election year so the battle is on."