Green Party 'betrayed' by David Clendon and Kennedy Graham

Green Party co-leader James Shaw says the party has been "betrayed" by Kennedy Graham and David Clendon who stepped down on Monday evening.

The two MPs withdrew from the party list in protest after Metiria Turei's admission of benefit fraud.

Mr Shaw wants them both out as soon as possible, and says the rest of the caucus MPs are backing Ms Turei.

"I feel betrayed by the way they have gone about this and so do the rest of the caucus," he says.

"Tomorrow morning at the caucus meeting I'll be moving a motion to suspend both of them from the Green party caucus.

"The way that they have chosen to go about it is strongly in violation of every Green Party norm, culture and process that we have."

Mr Shaw says the rest of the caucus is united in their support of Ms Turei in the continuation of her role, and she will stay on as co-leader.

"I completely support what Metiria has done… There's a marginalised group in society who now feel that they're being represented."

If caucus votes to immediately suspend Mr Graham and Mr Clendon on Tuesday, their portfolios would be handed on to other MPs.

Mr Shaw said although it was admittedly a bit of a mess, the party would get through what he called a "blip".

"I think other parties have been through a great deal worse than this and come out healthy on the other side.

"We've got a tremendous list of candidates and it does actually increase the chances that some of those tremendous new talents will be elected to caucus."

'I am kind of over the level of interrogation that she has received'

Mr Shaw threw his support behind Ms Turei and said the criticism that followed her admission of benefit fraud was a double standard.

"We felt that resigning over something she did over 25 years ago, which was a minor indiscretion in the scheme of things, was completely disproportionate."

Mr Shaw said the "double dipper from Dipton" Bill English had recieved a $32,000 housing allowance while he was a minister that he wasn't entitled to, and John Key was registered to vote in Helensville while serving as Prime Minister but he "never once lived" there.

"Frankly I am kind of over the level of interrogation that she has received for what was minor events that occurred 25 years ago, before she was a member of Parliament."

'We felt it was a risk worth taking'

Mr Shaw says the caucus understood the risk that the benefit fraud admission would pose but they wanted to take it.

The party has seen an increase in support in recent weeks following the admission.

"So far over the course of the last few weeks we've actually seen an increase in membership and volunteers and general support."