Local Tauranga MPs say Metiria Turei's decision to resign as Green Party co-leader was inevitable but some described it as a commendable, brave move to put her party first.

Ms Turei, who announced her resignation at the Beehive this evening, said the scrutiny of her family over her past welfare history after disclosing her benefit and electoral offending had become "unbearable"

NZME understands that the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll sees the Greens polling having dropped from 15 per cent to 8 per cent.

Ms Turei has been under increasing pressure to resign after she admitted historical welfare offending while on the benefit 20 years ago.


Last week Turei revealed she did not disclose to Work and Income in the 1990s that she had extra flatmates while claiming a solo parent benefit, including her mother

She also admitted last week she enrolled at a Mt Albert address where is did not live in 1993 so she could vote for a friend.

Co-leader James Shaw will now lead the party alone until the Greens' annual general meeting next year.

Labour Party candidate for Tauranga, Jan Tinetti, said Ms Turei had to be commended for not only making a decision which was best her and her family, "but more importantly she has done what was best for her party as former Andrew Little did last week. It's an amazingly brave thing to do".

"What I understand is Metiria is also not going to put herself on the Green Party list this election but will be standing in the Te Tai Tonga electorate canvassing only for the Green Party vote.

"Again she is doing what she believes is best for her party," she said.

Bay of Plenty electorate MP Todd Muller said he believed Ms Turei's resignation had been inevitable.

"I think politics, like lots of other things in life, is ultimately about trust, and Metiria had lost the trust of New Zealanders, which was clear from public feedback and the polls."

Mr Muller said Ms Turei had reached her own decision after she found her position untenable and ultimately it was a decision she and her party made.

"But in my view it was the right decision," he said.

Tauranga and National Party MP Simon Bridges could not be contacted for comment.

NZ First Party MP Clayton Mitchell said he was genuinely "not interested" in what the Green Party was doing but believed Ms Turei's decision was inevitable.

"But I don't think it should be an opportunity for any party to start to put the boot in, and ultimately it was decision that she and her party had to make," he said.

Tauranga Green Party candidate Emma-Leigh Hodge, said: "What Metiria had put forward was a policy, backed by her lived experience, that boldly addressed poverty in New Zealand, and put real welfare reform on the table for the first time in decades.

"I stand by my statements of total support. Thousands of people all over the country have been inspired and shared their own stories with us as well.

"Since opening the conversation though, Metiria and her family have been under extreme scrutiny and her decision tonight has been about putting them first.

"I still stand with Metiria and we will do all we can to continue the necessary conversation about welfare reform and campaigning to change the government."

The same poll has seen Labour support surge from 24 per cent to 33 per cent since Jacinda Ardern replaced Andrew Little as Labour leader after he stepped aside.

Ms Ardern said in her nine years in Parliament she had seen MPs from almost all parties resign under tough circumstances.

"Behind almost every single one has been a history of working hard and championing the people they have represented.

"I want to acknowledge Metiria's enormous contribution to politics and important causes during the 15 years she has been in Parliament.

"Metiria has always had a steadfast commitment to social justice, especially championing the rights of children, and changing the Government - a challenge I know we will both remain focused on," she said.