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Choosing our next PM

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 am, November 29th, 2011 - 172 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, david parker, labour - Tags:

Looks like Labour will have a proper leadership comp with Goff as caretaker till early next year. Good. Let’s get to know the options. Labour needs to get this right. Because the next Labour leader needs to be the next PM in 2014. Needs to be able to win. The poor people of NZ can’t afford another lost 3 years begin squeezed and ripped off by the Tories.

Danyl at Dimpost has weighed up the options. Worth a read. Really it comes down to the 2 Davids: Parker or Cunliffe. Maybe Little too.

My two cents:

Parker’s sharp and likeable. He has a business background and he won a blue seat at his first crack – it was 2002 though and he’s lost 3 elections since (only 1 on purpose). The guy’s integrity is beyond professional reproach. Parker kept his nose clean as a minister. Even stood down from his portfolios when there was a hint he had accidentally done some paperwork for a business wrong. Most ministers would fight tooth and nail over far worse improprieties than that. Look at Worth and Wong for starters.

But can Parker sell Labour? This is the question. Labour doesn’t need to change much of its policy platform. It needs to hit refresh on its relationship with the public. Could Parker do that? Interesting to see that Phil Quinn already has numbers supposedly showing the caucus backs Parker. Not hard to work out who gave Quinn that. Interesting though because he very much stands for the status quo.

Cunliffe is also sharp and has become good with the media, showing a bit of interesting character in the last year. A couple of recent stuff-ups notwithstanding, he is well clear of the ‘nasty party’ branding the right has been trying to fix on Labour with some success (and justification). Cunliffe has the highest profile of any of the contenders and took the fight to English in a way which Goff didn’t manage against Key until the end. A simpler personal life than Parker, which does matter to voters. Downside is he’s got an ego. That sense of his own destiny makes him unpopular in with other MPs.

But the Leader’s job isn’t to be mates with all of caucus. It’s to win elections. And Cunliffe has – he extended his majority this election and had ‘only’ a 10% fall in party vote vs 20% nationwide. Cunliffe can win, and he believes he can. And what’s wrong with that? Question is whether enough of his colleagues can see past the ego to the useful tool for the party’s success. It’s telling that the Nats are already trying to stymie Cunliffe by talking up his chances, knowing how that will play in Labour.

Sure Little lost in New Plymouth but that was a deeply blue seat even last election. Duynhoven got 5,500 more votes than Labour in 2008. Little has 4,400 more. Little lost because of 2 changes compared to 2008: the party vote dropped by 3,000 there was a Green candidate, who took 1,100. That’s not bad on Little’s part. His personal factor was comparable to Duynhoven – who was MP for 6 terms and is now mayor. So, don’t rule him out because of that race.

Little’s got a lot media experience and a lot of leadership experience. He’s not easily flustered. He headed an organisation with a couple of hundred staff and tens of thousands of members. The EPMU’s probably bigger and more complicated than Labour. Little’s dealt with national power figures, often winning against them in disputes, and was seen as a moderate, modern unionist by the business elite. At the same time, he got out tens of thousands of ordinary workers for the Wage Drive rallies in ’08. When was the last time a Labour leader packed 8,000 into Telstra Clear Stadium? He could be seen as a unifying alternative between those who don’t like Cunliffe and those who want to have a decent chance of winning in 2014.

3 good choices to choose from. Whichever way it goes, these 3 will be core to the new Labour leadership. The question is only which one can foot it with Key and win votes for the party.

172 comments on “Choosing our next PM”

  1. PIB 1

    Jacinda Ardern.

    • Jimmy 1.1

      Would be a good option, but will never happen as there are too many old boys who think they have the right to leadership before a young upstart. Labour need to realise the voters want a “president” from party leaders.

      • PIB 1.1.1

        Exactly. So much talk of David, Andrew and David. They’re all dull and without the superstar factor which is needed to defeat Key.
        Jacinda is young and by God she is smart, sharp, good looking and never looses a debate!

    • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 1.2

      You mean the person who lost a historicially safe Labour seat by a majority greater than Judith Tizard lost it by?!?!?

      • lprent 1.2.1

        Another inaccurate statement. Now specials aren’t released until December 10th, so you’re comparing apples with oranges.

        But as it stands at present Nikki Kay has a majority of 535, whereas the final count in 2008 gave her a majority of 1,497. I guess you are above actually checking facts?

        You really are a total ignorant trolling fuckwit.

        • Akldnut 1.2.1.1

          absolutely +1

        • DavidC 1.2.1.2

          Ardern got utterly trounced. Only the 4000 green voters who supported her made it look close.

          • lprent 1.2.1.2.1

            I see – so on the same basis you’d argue that Nikki Kaye ‘lost’ about 3000 party votes for National and close to 2500 electorate votes for herself, and that her presence in the electorate caused the number of people who voted to drop by about 8000.

            Read the damn figures and see that there are 6600 specials still to count, and that the number of votes cast is likely to be a few thousand down at least.

            You’re either an alarming example of the numerically illiterate or you’re demonstrating a level of stupidity by believing someone who is numerically stupid.. Based on your comments vaguely remembered from from the past, I suspect that you’re merely channeling someone even dumber than you are. Perhaps you should use your own brains rather than borrowing Whales?

            • Graeme Edgeler 1.2.1.2.1.1

              Those specials are specials cast in Auckland Central. Many will be cast there by people who were in the city on Saturday, perhaps for work, and who found it more conventient to cast a special vote there, than vote in their home electorate.

              • lprent

                Yeah, I know. I’m expecting the total count to be down by a 2000-3000 compared to 2008.

                From what I remember of the provisional figures from 2008 it was about a net reduction of 20 to 25% of the specials.

                There are all those people from Auckland central who vote outside the electorate especially in Mt Albert (St Lukes is a big attraction) or Epsom (Parnell and Newmarket) as well. Unusually I actually managed to vote in a actual Auckland central booth this time. Usually I special vote in Mt Albert where I’m helping on the day.

                • Misanthropic Curmudgeon

                  LPrent, you should know that most Auckland voting booths have ‘booths’ for neighbouring seats, so that ‘specials’ dont have to be cast when you are 3km from home.

                  For example, a booth in Mt Eden had ‘booths’ for Epsom, Mt Albert and Mt Auckland.

            • DavidC 1.2.1.2.1.2

              Maybe you are a shining example of why the Labour Party is so fucked? You just cant read numbers? or more likely you can read you just don’t want to admit you got it totally wrong.

        • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 1.2.1.3

          You are wrong LPrent.

          In 2011, Jacinda Adhern got 11823
          http://www.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2011/electorate-1.html

          In 2008, Judith Tizard got 13180
          http://www.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2008/electorate-1.html

          Not only did Jacinda lose a historically safe Labour seat, she lost a thousand votes as well (and not to mention The Greens were all-in behind her) on what ‘the T-Bomb’ got.

          I stand by my point, and provided more citations for evidence, and await:
          – your appology for your being wrong, or,
          – my being banned for trolling for providing fact-based discourse.

          • felix 1.2.1.3.1

            How many votes did Kaye lose, MC?

          • lprent 1.2.1.3.2

            You are just demonstrating that you are an moron who either doesn’t read or more likely doesn’t understand what they are seeing.

            For instance following the SAME moron logic you displayed, you’d have to argue that Nikki Kaye dropped more two thousand votes because her vote ‘dropped’ from 14,677 in 2008 to 12,358 in 2011. But I guess you didn’t actually read the pages but rather cribbed this from someone slightly less stupid than you are.

            In fact neither has happened. I suspect that when the Official results are released on December 10th (didn’t you read the headings on the two pages?) that Nikki Kaye will be very similar to her 2008 level and Jacinda will be well above Judiths total. Both will be pretty good considering that the total votes will be down for the electorate.

            Now lets see if we can get the bits you were missing through your thick head.

            In your second link see the section that reads “Special Votes: 6,660″. Then try and find the same thing in the other link. Duh! These results are provisional because the specials still have to be added into the totals. The total vote without the specials was about 27k in 2011, with the specials it was 35k on 2008. The majority of the specials will be for this electorate.

            This is the reason why one page is headed “Official Count Results — Auckland Central” and the other is headed with “Election Results — Auckland Central”. The latter is because it is just the count on the night and not the final count including special votes.

            I stand by my point, and provided more citations for evidence, and await:
            – your appology for your being wrong, or,
            – my being banned for trolling for providing fact-based discourse.

            Have you ever considered that you simply don’t know what you’re talking about? That your bullshit on topics that you don’t understand is why people think that you aren’t very well endowed? With a bit of actual effort, that instead of being viewed as a limp useless troll, you will able to stand tall.

            And you aren’t banned (yet). You’re merely being moderated because you were dumping rubbish ‘facts’ into the comments and then not dealing with the comments that said you were wrong and why. That lack of engagement is the definition of trolling on this site. I put you in moderation because makes you read and respond to the reply.

            It is likely that you’ve just picked up bad habits of failing to engage with others, so I’m donating some of my personal attention to advance your education. Of course I like the ‘much tougher love’ approach to educating trolls as I find it makes them lift their skills in a hurry. Besides it is more fun for me this way.

            • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 1.2.1.3.2.1

              Your argumenst (that Kaye also lost 2000 votes) is simplistic, lprent, because Kaye won the seat. Adhern, touted by some as the new messiah to lead Labour to the promised land, lost. That appears lost on you too.

              Simply haging out for the special count does not address this unfortunate – for your rhetoric – fact, and would require Adhern to outperfrom all previous special-upsets in order to overturn an election night spanking.

              In saying “Have you ever considered that you simply don’t know what you’re talking about?” you appear to be channelling your own, very public, bias. You can get help for that if you wish.

              • lprent

                Weird.. So you are arguing that ‘losing’ 2000 votes is quite different to ‘losing’ 1000 votes because the greater loser actually won.

                And that neither of them are likely to actually lose any votes and are likely to actually increase their votes after the specials are counted doesn’t matter because… Because… Because you’re a fuckwit without any logical processing centers…

                Ummm sprouting ‘facts’ and links that have little relevance. Accusations of bias when challenged. Inability to argue on points anyone else raises. Squirming like a flatworm whenever light is shone on you. Absolutely no self awareness or self humor….

                Hah I recognize that particular breed of inane logic. You are a climate change denier. Actual facts or science doesn’t matter. All you need to do is make them up – especially when challenged.

                Ok so you have proved that you are incapable of any kind of discussion. Does anyone else wan to pla with this fool? Speak up now of or ever hold your peace…

                • felix

                  Doesn’t seem worth it.

                  I thought it was trolling but by the look of that last comment it really is that dense.

    • erentz 1.3

      Definitely worth considering, if not this term maybe the next… TBH the alternatives above just don’t do it for me. But I actually rather like Phil Goff and think he’d have made a fine PM, so clearly I’m strange. It’ll be sad to see Goff go.

  2. I reckon David Cunliffe. He took the then marginal National seat and has since transformed it into a Labour stronghold. New Lynn won the party vote in 2008, one of only six seats in the region to do so.

    The seat is actually becoming more gentrified and more middle class so his retaining the seat deserves some cudos.

    And this time David increased his majority and held the loss of party vote to 3.8% against a National average of 7.1%.

    I have had the pleasure of seeing him speak a number of times and he is getting better and better.

    He is devastating on his feet. He is able to field a question and instantly give a reasoned informed yet easily digestible response on even the most complex of issues.

    He also has a sense of humour and has the ability to cut through to swinging voters and ordinary people. This is the feature that will be most important in a future leader.

    Parker, Shearer and Little are all decent candidates but IMHO do not have that wow factor.

    Parker will be an excellent Attorney General, Shearer Education Minister and Little Minister of Labour in the next Labour Government.

    But they lack that ability to shine and would struggle against Key.

    • insider 2.1

      And he has that great cuzzie bro accent he can roll out too.

    • Joel Walsham 2.2

      If it so happens that Phil Goff resigns today, then I hope the party considers who will be able to take the fight to John Key and win resoundingly. We need someone who understands the economy inside out. Someone who can talk with intelligence but passion. Someone who has a relationship with the Green leadership that means we could have a strong Labour/Green Government in 2014. In my humble opinion, the man for the job is David Cunliffe.

  3. jaymam 3

    The Herald is suggesting David Cunliffe and Nanaia Mahuta.
    Labour will not win with them.

    • Anthony 3.1

      I’m hoping Mahuta addition was a bad joke

      • mickysavage 3.1.1

        No it is a very elegant statement of the future of the party. Maori pakeha, male female, urban rural representative. Besides Nanaia is a thoroughly decent woman and has formidable links into Maori.

        • Anthony 3.1.1.1

          She may have all those things, but she doesn’t have the chops for the job.

        • insider 3.1.1.2

          Not just out of her depth ability wise, does she have the commitment? She stepped back from work for personal reasons, but rightly or wrongly I wonder if her colleagues will see her as having the spine and work ethic for such a job.

        • just saying 3.1.1.3

          So now instead of ineptly aping Key, Labour could ineptly ape the Greens.

          The co-leadership is a great idea, but Mahuta is no Turei. In fact in that particular partnership, the awful Harvey Norman is the “token”. Turei still seems to be the real deal. And she’s a strong leader.

          On the other hand a strong Maori presence in the leadership would be great if there was someone suitable…?

        • Joel Walsham 3.1.1.4

          Not only this but a Cunliffe/Mahuta leadership team would very much cut through the crap that plagues politicians. Labour needs to sound like Labour.

          Both Cunliffe and Mahuta sound like Labour when they talk. They talk about multiculturalism, they talk about poverty, they talk about jobs. This is what we need at the top. I believe they would make a very fierce yet likable team.

          • Tigger 3.1.1.4.1

            Mahuta would be a superb choice. She’s clearly stepped up for this and that means she will go for this hard. Very pleased to see her there.

            Who saw this coming? Liking it.

            • Vicky32 3.1.1.4.1.1

              Mahuta would be a superb choice. She’s clearly stepped up for this and that means she will go for this hard. Very pleased to see her there.

              If Fatty Garner and the MSM favour this partnership, then it can’t be good – and they do!

    • millsy 3.2

      I was talking to someone who knew Mahuta personally. They said that she could be quite nasty at time. Not really keen on that.

  4. Brett 4

    Cunliffe comes across as a arrogant cock, reminds me of Michael Cullen
    Don’t know a lot about Parker but he does look weak and insipid more of a background guy not a leader.
    Little has the personality of a brick.

    Pick Shearer, the guy hasn’t being tainted with all the political crap. he has a clean slate, doesn’t look to shabby and isn’t a teacher or unionist.
    Also run some pretty big stuff at the UN which is pretty impressive.
    He is by far Labours best bet.

    • Pete 4.1

      I agree, he does seem a bit arrogant, but the NZ electorate seems to like that sort of thing – anyway, wouldn’t any politician with ambitions to be prime minister have a degree of arrogance/confidence?

      • Brett 4.1.1

        Pretty fine line between arrogance and confidence.
        Cunliffe is more arrogance, I think it may have come from his father being a church minister and seeing him lording it over his flock.
        I don’t think he can help it, it’s hard wired into him.

    • AnnaLiviaPlurabella 4.2

      Dear Brett, I’ve known Cunliffe for nine years and have worked with him in many campaigns. I’ve NEVER seen arrogance, nor rudeness. I’ve seen Charming Asseriveness, Well Founded Confidence and A Sense of Urgency. Ive seen him on his feet on front of widely diverse audiences and managing to link the macro policy issues to the immediate issue of somone paying their rent this week. To compare him with Cullen is a great compliment but a little bit inaccurate. Thank you.

      • insider 4.2.1

        Thanks for that Mrs Cunliffe ;-)

        • felix 4.2.1.1

          lol!

        • Ari 4.2.1.2

          Seriously though, Cunliffe is not even in the same league as Cullen. Cullen used to tease Peters mercilessly around Parliament and had a flippant remark to everything, and if there was a problem, it was someone else’s problem. Cunliffe is just serious and sure of himself.

  5. Carol 5

    Cunliffe. He’s good communicative ability and can get cut through with the media as a strong opposition leader, in what will be increasingly tough times. The other contenders are too bland.

    Cunliffe can improve on the likeability factor over time. He should have someone more personable as his deputy eg Ardern.

  6. Francisco Hernandez 6

    I don’t care who leads the Labour Party as long as the grassroots party members like me have a say.

    Even if it were non-binding and published straw polls in every LEC to gauge the party memberships’ mood I’d be reaonably happy with that.

    • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 6.1

      Given that the Labour Party Central Committe and rules stacks the electorate voting for the candidate so that only the ‘approved’ person can win the candidacy, you’ve got no show on being slistened to about who will lead the party.

      • lprent 6.1.1

        Another fact free statement without either backing or experience. I’ve been on a number of selection meetings without seeing evidence of stacking. I’d guess that Francisco has as well if it is who I think he is.

        Face your own nature – you’re just another idiot troll. Whenever you start typing your ignorance is revealed for all to marvel at your levels of National stupidity. See here for examples.

        • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1

          Yes, the Francisco Hernandez here is indeed ‘the’ Francisco Hernandez imo.

          • Francisco Hernandez 6.1.1.1.1

            Yes, I am “the” Francisco Hernandez.

            I’ve been part of about two selections now – once as an observer (in the Te Atatu election) and once as a voting member (in the DUneidn North Selection) and I’ve never seen any central office stacking…

        • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 6.1.1.2

          LPrent is choosing to ignore the voting on potential candidates, and how those votes are allocated.

          Read Section 246 of Labours rules:
          http://www.labour.org.nz/sites/labour.org.nz/files/constitution.pdf
          – 3 votes for ‘head office’
          – 2 votes for the committee (and we know who chooses them!)
          – 1 vote from the floor
          – 1 vote for the locals

          Only a Labourite would consider that democratic

          [lprent: if there is a point in there, then I cannot see it because you did not state it. I rather suspect that you are incapable of actually articulating one that makes sense.

          In fact I suspect that you are so stupid that you are simply copying this from somewhere. If you want to survive here, then it is important that you remove your hand off where think that your brain lives, and use the real one.

          This is a troll comment. ]

          • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 6.1.1.2.1

            How can you call my answer to your question, complete with citation of Labour party rules from their constitution a troll comment?

            I claimed Labour was undemocratic in their selections, you poo-poo-ed that claim, and I backed it up with an explanation and citation of Labour party rules from their constitution.

            Tou say that you can’t see the point of a clear assertion and supporting evidence/link and explanation, and call the clear assertion and supporting evidence and explanation a troll comment is staggering!

  7. queenstfarmer 7

    Don’t overlook that the new leader won’t just be taking on Key at the next election. He (or she?) will also be taking on the Greens, and possibly NZ First. A successful, rising Green party is likely to be a much bigger threat to Labour’s 2014 vote than National. Likewise with a leftward moving NZ First that claims to be the “true opposition”. They may all be part of a left-wing block, but I’m sure Labour doesn’t want to be reduced to a bit player in that block.

    • Ari 7.1

      You’re looking at this wrong.

      The new leader needs to be able to play well with the Greens, and possibly rope Peters into a left coalition. It’s the job of labour policy to claw in party votes from the Greens, NZF, and National. It’s the job of the leader to play nice with their friends and steal votes from their opponents.

      • Reality Bytes 7.1.1

        Yep exactly. For all this talk of who the next leader and deputy leader of the Labor party might be, it is entirely possible that Labor’s next deputy might not be the next deputy Prime minister – since that position could well be Norman’s or Metiria’s.

  8. coolas 8

    If Parker and Cunliffe have close to equal support in caucus a third challenger could emerge. A compromise. And I hope it’s David Shearer. His background in diplomacy, his intelligence, and gentlemanly demeanour are a powerful foil to Key’s financial past, shallow thought, and crassness. With Jacinda Adhern as deputy Labour would like a new party and have a chance to come back after the worst election outcome since 1928.

    • Carol 8.1

      Shearer is another bland managerial type and would have no appeal to the traditional Labour base.

    • Anyone who thinks Shearer would be a good option either

      a) has never meet him
      b) has never heard him try to speak in public, or
      c) supports National

      • Brett 8.2.1

        I have never met Shearer, what is wrong with him? and what do you mean supports National, if this is the case what’s he doing in Labour?

        Also Key is a shocking public speaker,luckily for him NZ’ders don’t enjoy those boring long winded Obama style speeches here so it doesn’t really matter.

        • insider 8.2.1.1

          I think he means he’s the kind of leader National supporters would like to see for Labour.

          • Brett 8.2.1.1.1

            And that’s a bad thing???

            • Anthony 8.2.1.1.1.1

              Well it was for ACT.

            • the sprout 8.2.1.1.1.2

              it is a bad thing to be popular with National if you’re leading Labour, yes.
              if it’s not clear enough: National would like Shearer as a leader because he’d be an easy opponent for them.

              • Brett

                The big advantage Key has is that he appeals to National and Labour voters and I think with a bit more training Shearer has the ability to do the same.

                Stop looking at National voters as the enemy but instead potential voters you can attract.

                • Ari

                  Labour don’t want core National voters. They want the “soft” voters that switched to National, and they want the people who didn’t vote this election. To do that, they need to let Labour be Labour, not keep trying to be National.

                  • exactly, i want a leader that’s popular with labour voters, floaters and undecideds.
                    i don’t want someone popular with commited national supporters

              • neoleftie

                and that what helen and Co thought about Key when there was a three way go around for national leadership betwen brownlee, english and key…and key connects with the voters.
                We need the front bench of the labour caucus hitting home not just the leader.

            • felix 8.2.1.1.1.3

              Well I hate the dirty filthy polluting thieving Nats and I want them to lose.

              I also just happen to think Kate Wilkinson would be an excellent National Party Leader.

              • Colonial Viper

                Kate Wilkinson has admirable leadership qualities, and those in the know within the National Party have been encouraging her to throw her hat in the ring for some time now.

                Intelligent, witty, charismatic, yet completely unmatched when it comes to substantive policy.

                I’d vote in a heart beat for a National with Kate Wilkinson at the helm, face it guys, the others on the so-called National front bench are just pale pretenders. And more to the point, she is also smokin’ hot.

            • the sprout 8.2.1.1.1.4

              I see your point but I think Wilkinson is a little too sexy for many voters to take her seriously, unfair though that is considering her ferocious intellect.

              So instead, I think National would be best served by the magnificent Melissa Lee as Leader, with Pansy Wong as Deputy. These two fine kiwis represent middle New Zealand and have consistently demonstrated both the rapier wit and incisive intelligence to lead National into a glorious victorius future.
              Yes, with them at the helm it’ll be Two Ticks for National from me.

          • Android 8.2.1.1.2

            I put some ‘polite’ constructive criticism to him at a Union forum, he sulked like I had dropped a weta down his pants! S & A are not to tainted to get their heads together with Greens, which needs to happen in-order to Govern in partnership. For Christ sake get it in your heads the Greens aren’t going away, so get use to dancing & eating mung beans the sooner the better or I’m going Green/ Grey.

      • Vicky32 8.2.2

        Anyone who thinks Shearer would be a good option either

        He’s my local, and a good guy! I have met him, and he’s great..

    • Android 8.3

      Yes Shearer and Adern combo, I’m out if it’s Cunliffe, he I put some ‘polite’ constructive criticism to him at a Union forum, he sulked like I had dropped a weta down his pants! S and A are not too tainted to get their heads together with Greens, which needs to happen in-order to Govern in partnership. For Christ sake get it in your heads the Greens aren’t going away, so get use to dancing and eating mung beans, the sooner the better or I’m going Green/ Grey.

  9. Uturn 9

    I don’t understand the Dim Post reasoning. He says Little shouldn’t be leader because he stands for what Labour were originally about. That Cunliffe should because he’s unpleasent and good with numbers – things that sound more like he is a good National MP. And that Parker looks like Goff… and Jones … well he just leaves us with three dots.

    Zetetic also describes two good National MPs in Parker and Cunliffe. Numbers men, sympathetic to Blue electorates.

    So perhaps someone on the inside can help me: What’s going on in there? What do Labour stand for now?

    I’m guessing once Labour figure that out, they’ll pick a leader. In the meantime, all signs look bad from the outside. Unless they already have some shock and awe plan to implement (which signs say they don’t) they won’t be in order for 2014. Looks like Labour are either considering leaving the left or shuffling themselves into minor party status. If Union membership is correct, that seems absurd.

    Not all bad for the Left voters – MMP will come into it’s own and left governments will be increasingly more democratic.

    Worst case scenario is Labour destroy themselves, Nats to manipulate for FPP or similar and voters just wait for the necessity of a re-emergence of a major cohesive left wing party in nine years or so. But by then a lot will more have changed.

  10. vto 10

    Sheesh, Little has only just got into Parliament so how on earth can he credibly lead Labour? No go. Get some time under the belt and then I have no doubt he will be strong and able to dominate. He will be interesting to watch this term.

    The differences between Cunliffe and Parker seem to be ones within Party bounds and which the public have not much of a clue about. Keep in mind that voters vote based on certain things only – like smiling and talking their language, being perceived as trustworthy, etc. I mean, who comes across the best to the public? That has to be one of the main drivers, all else being equal.

    • lprent 10.1

      Agreed. Similar issues with Jacinda, Shearer, and Twyford this time around.

      If you’ve ever seen Key in the house you can see his inexperience even after two terms. He is a clothes house for the public, incapable of the heavy lifting.

    • neoleftie 10.2

      shoot the power is behind the scenes, in the factions and in the legacy of helen clark.
      Little as Union big time chief power player cum former party president and faction broker has the cred but not the voter support – scary way to scary – labour’s vote would implode next go around.

      Parker and Cunliffe both from the right of the party and can stay there frankly.

      Robertson ex dunedite and H1 staffer not called H3 for any old reason. sharp sharp sharp, one hand as deputy and the other on party strategy and direction.

      Shearer is in play early but ticks the boxes. left, green and light right.
      Shearer as front man and Robertson as deputy. Look to which way old trev mallard goes…king maker.

  11. Francisco Hernandez 11

    By that I mean, having a public debate in each LEC and then inviting party members and interested public members to attend. There would then be a non-binding straw poll held and published in the media

  12. Cunliffe has a simpler personal life than Parker, which does matter to voters

    Indeed. Parker’s personal life will ward off any chance of leadership. big mistake.

    Cunliffe would be my preference but his going awol with the budget figures just before the CHCH debate was utterly treacherous and not easily forgiveable. That said, Cunliffe and Ardern Could make a winning combination. Mahuta would be even worse than King was.

    But the best combination would be Goff and Ardern in 2014. That would win.

    • Cunliffe would be my preference but his going awol with the budget figures just before the CHCH debate was utterly treacherous and not easily forgiveable.

      Disagree entirely sorry.

      1. Goff if he did so mucked up the income projections for the CGT. These figures had been out for months and were well known.
      2. The release of the figures was scheduled for the Friday after the Tuesday debate. This had been in the pipeline for a while.
      3. The figures based on the PREFU were finalised on the Wednesday and the Thursday after the debate. This had always been the plan and no one suggested that it should happen quicker.

      This is desperate spin put out by someone probably in caucus. It is simply not true. Whoever it is should be ashamed.

      • the sprout 12.1.1

        ok well if that’s true i’m happy to stand corrected, i got it from a usually reliable source

        • mickysavage 12.1.1.1

          Hi Sprout. I accept the comment has been made and repeated a few times. The problem with it is that the conspiracy theory does not match the facts. Whoever is doing it is engaging in the sort of behaviour that would make Slater or Farrar proud.

          • ianmac 12.1.1.1.1

            Trying to remember the detailed costings presented by National before the 2008 election and there weren’t any. And only very vague ones this time from National. How on earth can they get away with grabbing the high ground.

          • Blighty 12.1.1.1.2

            You guys will know more about it than me but would Cunliffe even by the one crunching the numbers and writing the documents – at the same time as campaigning and debating English?

            Surely it would be staffers. And aren’t all the staffers in opposition employed by the Leader’s Office?

      • insider 12.1.2

        Goff and the election strategists wear ultimate responsibilty for not being prepped for the debate. Whether the numbers had been released or not, the question line should have been anticipated and addressed, as it had been well flagged beforehand.

    • Frida 12.2

      Actually Sprout you’re probably right there. But isn’t it a foregone conclusion (sadly) that Goff is gone?

    • AnnaLiviaPlurabella 12.3

      Any leader is fully responsible to be ready for a major debate. The CGT story has been worked inside and outside the party for a year. Cunliffe has taklen the story and figures up and down the country. Boag, Coddington Hotton and Whale will be delighted to see the this garbage being adopted by a regular left commentator people like the Sprout. Jesus Wept!

  13. rosy 13

    “but the best combination would be Goff and Ardern in 2014. That would win.”
    Agree, and there is no need invent a new vision for the party – it was clearly articulated in the election build-up, and will gain support as the lack of economic growth drags on. What a waste if there is no follow-through.

  14. Adrian 14

    Phil Goff, only choice. To win you have to have had a few losses. Learn from the other big contest that dominates in this country, it wasn’t until they kept the same team after a humiliating loss that the RWC was won. You need to lose to learn how to win.

  15. vidiot 15

    If Labour want to appeal to some of the 48%, perhaps they should be looking @ Damien O’Connor as an option ?

  16. Mr Little is greatly talented, experienced and thoroughly estimable, but it is irresponsible to promote someone with neither constituency nor any track record in Parliamentary politics as the next Labour leader. He is going to be a major player for Labour in Parliament, but he ought not to be at the gate in this race. Let him get his feet under the table for a minute, at least.

  17. Frida 17

    My two cents’ worth.
    David Cunliffe over David Parker. Parker is a great guy as I happen to know firsthand. Intelligent, warm, full of integrity. But probably IMHO lacks that cut-throat X factor which is going to be the only thing that can combat Brand Key and the Joyce media PR machine.
    Cunliffe, while certainly in possession of an ego, does have that X factor. He is a devastatingly effective public speaker.
    Perhaps to soften his sharp edges, Jacinda Ahern as his running mate? She is certainly the leader of the future and would provide the broader appeal to all New Zealanders that perhaps Cunliffe doesn’t (but for the next 3 years he can provide the attacks and analysis to unravel the NACT bullshit).

    Cheers

    • Craig Glen Eden 17.1

      Jacinda is too young and has not even won a seat.I love Jacinda but we need to let her develop don’t throw her to the wolves, look what that kind of pressure/expectation did to Dalziel.

      For Pete sack don’t do that to Jacinda she has time on her side lets not weigh her down with Leadership let her develop on a personal level and political level.

      Cunliffe is a way better bet than Parker when it comes to presence, the voters love Cunliffe and thats what we need votes people. We may not like it but we have to have a leader who can smash brand Key and Cunliffe has that ability. Nanaia Mahuta is just what Labour needs also because she is passionate her links in Maoridom are huge historically, for Labour to have a strong Maori woman would send huge signals to Maori voters and we need Maori behind Labour to get rid of the poisonous Tariana.I have started talking to local senior Maori and they think very highly of Nania Mahuta the response to the Cunliffe/Mahuta leadership proposition is, “Now your talking Labour”.

      Cunliffe bringing in Nania Mahuta is very clever politics and shows just the kind of political savvy that is needed to get Labour back into Government.Have a look at Nania’s presentation in Labour’s closing address thats passion people and thats what its going to take to turn voters back to Labour principles and policy.Labour always has the best policy its our delivery that is the problem and that was what was always going to hold Phil back and why we didnt get the voter turnout we needed. Its time we in Labour were realistic, we got beaten in the weekend and that has left us with less resources for this Parliamentary term. Who ever is selected Cunliffe or Parker the other camp has to swing in behind the other to not do so will result in disaster for Labour.

      • Deuto 17.1.1

        +1. Well put – totally agree. I really wish Goff would remain as his experience is exceptional and in the last few weeks, I believe that the general public were finally starting to connect to him. But I also respect his decision to go if that is what he wants.

        I think highly of Jacinda and believe that she is a future leader and will do well when the time is right, but I don’t want to see that wasted by throwing her to the wolves at this time.

      • Arandar 17.1.2

        I’ve watched Nanaia campaign for three elections now. She’s an impressive debater – quiet, informed, dignified and as tough and determined as they get. She’s no walk-over. She’s held in wide respect within and without ‘Maori-dom’ by any that have dealt with her.

  18. King Kong 18

    Call me shallow but the way a leader looks is an important factor in winning over the part of the public who dont give a flying crap about politics (probably about 80%).

    Cunliffe – Total ringer for “droopy dog” (check it out it’s uncanny) so thats him finished. The other thing to consider is that people find it very hard to conect with chubby, arogant, nerds.

    Parker – normal enough looking but the specks make him look a bit like a latte sipping ponce. This is fine unless Labour is serious about recapturing Chris Trotters “Waitakere man” or whatever he called it.

    Little – Probably the best fit in terms of look for a leader that would connect to the public. The shame about this is that it is obvious to everyone, bar union sychophants, that he is by far the least talented of the contenders.

  19. Glenn 19

    Little New Plymouth 2011 …12,420
    Duynhoven New Plymouth 2008 16,434
    .
    Little never was expected to win but he wasn’t expected to lose by such a large amount.
    His campaign was unimaginative. His campaign signs were not flattering and made him look very austere like something more suited to the 1930s.
    While he debated well against the local National member I think he would be dog tucker against Key. A good hard working plodder but not political leadership material.

  20. Blue 20

    I’ve heard all three Davids speak and IMO none of them are right for the job.

    David Shearer was totally unimpressive. Left me wondering what all the fuss about him was.

    David Parker makes me wince every time he gets up to ask a question in the House. Long-winded, boring, stumbles over his words and has the charisma of a newt.

    David Cunliffe is probably the best of the three, intelligent, confident and fiery, but yes, he is arrogant, and that won’t win him friends either within the party or with the public, who are always accusing the left of arrogance.

    Phil’s still the man.

  21. Matt 21

    Dunedin North Green party voter, Labour electorate. Often read, never written.

    As gross as it sounds, I feel the person for the job needs to be someone who has some of the same qualities as Key. As we know, for some godforsaken reason, Key’s dull and number-based smugness is what soft-voting/headed NZers seem to be enjoying, and I imagine in three years’ time this may still be the case.

    Though I don’t necessarily think he is the person who might best represent the entire spectrum of Labour policy, I think Cunliffe could lead the party to take back the power in 2014. He’s a pakeha male, non-threatening in terms of lifestyle, is respected in what he has done as finance spokesperson, and, most importantly, has attitude. I can imagine Cunliffe in the context of the presidential-style campaign that may well be the norm for some time, and doing very well with it. I don’t feel this is the case with the other potential leaders.

    Looking well into the future, I agree with the Jacinda Adern suggestions.

    Did anyone watch Native Affairs last night? Bizarre/intriguing to see that mini-Key from Tauranga, Simon Bridges. He’s learnt to speak like his sugar-daddy, same ‘What I wanna say about that is two things. Firstly…’ intros, but acting very spoilt child-like. What was worse was Mike King, Sandra Lee and Matt McCarten effusively predicting him as future leader of the National Party and PM. Granted, after they warned him he is too smug, but still, nauseating.

    • Olwyn 21.1

      “As gross as it sounds, I feel the person for the job needs to be someone who has some of the same qualities as Key.”

      A lot of time and money has been spent on creating and maintaining Brand Key, and they seemed to me to have had some nervous moments maintaining it through the abbreviated campaign, where he needed to be on show for longer periods. In fact, while I have heard mumblings along the lines of “seems like a decent bloke” I have seen no evidence whatsoever of the great love the public is meant to have for Key – the everybody-apart-from-you-and-me category that loves Key may well be an empty set, maintained by PR firms. Labour would not be served by such nonsense, since we do not have the vested interests behind us desperate to keep such a myth alive. We need the realo-dealo. An empty brand would not work for us in the same way.

  22. Glenn 22

    “Labour MPs are gathering in their caucus room, preparing to hear Phil Goff resign his leadership of the party.

    In an unusual move the party have excluded media from the Labour caucus corridor.

    Contender David Cunliffe, who has been linked on a ticket with Nanaia Mahuta, entered early and confirmed no decision should be expected today.

    Most commentators say his main rival David Parker has his nose ahead.

    Senior Labour MP Shane Jones confirmed Goff was making an announcement at the meeting about his future.

    Goff and deputy Annette King are expected to resign. ”
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/6053337/Labours-caucus-gathers-for-Goff-decision

    • AnnaLiviaPlurabella 22.1

      “Most commentators say his main rival David Parker has his nose ahead”

      Most commenattor are either the Natz ACT aligned “commentator” or Bloggers. They want to stop Cunliffe at all costs.

    • alwyn 22.2

      What are the chances that a free-lance photographer managed to “accidently” leave a live microphone in the room and the recording will be with the HOS by 2.00pm today?

  23. Tiger Mountain 23

    Labour should wait for a few months to think about this. Get goaded into a media spun early contest, you’d be mad.

    I hear there were young nats out with printed thankyou signs at Royal Oak roundabout in Auckland on Sunday. Gargoyle Farrar had not one but two columns at the NZ Herald and Stuff, plus two blogs and a national contracted polling company to boot. They want you to do it now. So don’t. I don’t want to say much yet not being a Labour member, however you would be advised to look at Jacinda as deputy just for the “governator” factor.

    Where Labour heads politically and places in the left bloc is the real matter though.

  24. insider 24

    You have to invest in a leader for the long term. Give them the ability to shake up the leadership team based on who you want in cabinet in 3 years, and develop a coherent and consistent policy platform to take forward. If CGT and no GST are sensible then keep them and keep pushing them. Accept you may not win next time as a result.

    Not easy in the knife fight of politics. Is there someone in caucus worth doing that as they did with Helen Clark? If Goff had come out fighting on Saturday then maybe, but the tone of his speech has likely set the expectation he is going.

    I do wonder if a problem with proportional representation is that it is so sensitive it encourages kneejerk responses to short term stimuli (polls) and looking for political ‘stars’ or gamechangers, rather than a long term view (you see the same in business with star CEOs parachuted in when the evidence seems to be for long term execs immersed in a business).

    With FPP you saw leaders lose multiple elections but not get dumped; perhaps because they knew they needed big swings to change a govt, and it took time to establish those trends.

    • Ari 24.1

      Goff being ditched has nothing to do with proportional representation and everything to do with the other type of PR. The media had been pushing a presidential politics narrative in which it was John Key versus Phil Goff, and Labour veered away from their party politics narrative where it was all of them versus just John Key. They need to be seen as a team, with a leader, sure, but with several strong and unified voices if they want to beat National, because Labour doesn’t have the money or media fuzzies to invest in the personality politics that National has been playing at.

      While I provisionally thought Goff could be a good leader for a couple days, I don’t think he ever quite got the hang of it even though policy-wise labour had a pretty good package this election. A change won’t hurt, so long as people don’t expect it to fix all of Labour’s problems, which really have little to do with the leadership and more to do with party structure, marketing strategy, and the death of New Zealand manufacturing narrowing their natural core voter base.

  25. Jim Nald 25

    David Cunliffe is smart, upfront and astute.

    What is this about tossing ‘arrogant’ around? So far, there are at least 7 references to that here from 3 people.

    David Cunliffe is intelligent and decent – to get ahead in New Zealand and internationally, we should not be pulling down tall poppies and we ought to acknowledge and appreciate Kiwis with such qualities who have chosen to remain and live in this country.

    It is intriguing to see him being cast in a bad light even at this early stage which should confirm to people that John Key and the nasty rats see David Cunliffe as the biggest threat to them.

  26. Blighty 26

    We need to remember that the next Labour leader doesn’t need to produce a miracle. Just getting Labour back into the mid-30s would be enough for the Left to govern (and would be healthier than, say, 40% Labour plus tack-ons).

    The leader needs to be someone that the centrist swing voters can imagine being their PM – intelligent, confident, forceful when need be, relate-able, compassionate. But it doesn’t matter if they’re flawed too. They don’t need to be a politician of the once-in-a-generation ilk. They just need to grab 5-7% of National’s supporters back.

    • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 26.1

      Would a Labour-led government with Labour in the 305-range have a mandate for anything, when many commentators on this blog say National does not with 60/121 seats?

      • felix 26.1.1

        It’s MMP, idiot.

      • Blighty 26.1.2

        If Labour plus partners equals a majority in the House, then that combination can govern.

        Key’s problem is he didn’t win a majority in the House, his allies are zombie Banks and zombie Dunne, and he’s whining that it’s a tight thing for him.

        • Misanthropic Curmudgeon 26.1.2.1

          Well, its National plus partners, and a campaign fought on (the misleading banner of) asset sales, so National, as winners, do have a mandate then, eh?

  27. Jim Nald 27

    David Cunliffe is smart, upfront and astute.

    What is this about tossing ‘arrogant’ around? So far, there are at least 7 references to that from 3 people here.

    David Cunliffe is intelligent and decent – to get ahead in New Zealand and internationally, we should not be cutting down tall poppies and we ought to acknowledge and appreciate Kiwis with such outstanding qualities who are still in this country.

    It is intriguing to see him being cast in a bad light even at this early stage which should confirm to people that John Key and the nasty rats see David Cunliffe as the biggest threat to them.

  28. Misanthropic Curmudgeon 28

    Please tell me you are kidding when you say “Labour doesn’t need to change much of its policy platform” and “Little’s dealt with national power figures, often winning against them in disputes, and was seen as a moderate, modern unionist by the business elite”

    It’s the 29th November, not 1st April.

  29. redvoter 29

    Cunliffe has what it takes IMO. He is intelligent, seems to see the overall picture and is extremely quick on his feet. I don’t have a problem with cockiness- you need a strong ego to make it in politics and I want a leader who believes in himself and has strong convictions that he can and will defend. He’s not perfect but he’ll do fine.

    Choose any of the other (worthy but uninspiring and destined to lose) contenders and Labour can expect to lose more of its support base next election to NZ First and the Greens. If Labour can’t put aside the infighting and choose the leader who is most likely to win (and people who vote for Labour have a rightful expectation that Labour will try their absolute best to win), then frankly they are in no shape to lead the country either.

  30. randal 30

    its the economy stupid!

  31. grumpy 31

    Cunliffe/Mahuta
    Parker/Jones
    Shearer/Ardern

    ?????????

  32. felix 32

    If it has to be this choice, and it really shouldn’t, then let it be Cunliffe.

    Parker? Smart and personable but no mongrel.
    Shearer? Shouldn’t even be in the discussion.
    Little? Should be the next Labour leader BUT after he’s won a seat and had a term in the house.

    But really none of them yet. Goff is the man to lead the party right now, with a fresh new deputy and the brilliant finance team he already has.

    This is the time to build the team, not tear it to pieces just because National want you to.

    • the sprout 32.1

      +1 agree entirely

    • Albie Chase 32.2

      [lprent: A wellington political astroturfer – now blacklisted. ]

      Felix, don’t you think the problem would be if Goff remains for some time, that it will look like a vote of no confidence in all the others? How does that look that the guy who led labour to the worst ever result turns out to be the best they’ve got?

      I have my doubts about Cunliffe. He goes over the top too often and there’s a good reason why his colleagues don’t like him. Parker is smart and a good policy guy, but he hasn’t shown a lot of strategic nous. Shearer is impressive. Robertson is I think much more a future leader than Little. Whatever happens I think Robertson should take responsibility for political management of the caucus, he’s got more experience as a political manager than anybody and has the self-discipline required to set a good example for others.

      Why isn’t Clare Curran being touted as a deputy? A Parker-Curran or Cunliffe-Curran mix with Robertson managing the caucus, and Shearer as Finance, would be far more formidable than anything else on offer.

      • Colonial Viper 32.2.1

        More nonsense.

        Goff staying would be a vote of confidence in Goff’s clear leadership abilities and ability to face off against Key in any forum and match or beat him.

        Goff polled at between 14% and 19% for preferred PM bby the end of the campaign. That’s political capital which all new contenders would have to build up from scratch.

      • the sprout 32.2.2

        if Curran ever got there i’d join Mana

      • lprent 32.2.3

        One term? You’re kidding.

        While John Key has managed to stave off a complete screwup so far, he does feel like he is destined for a Lange moment. The teacup and other incidents were kind of noticeable lapses in that direction. 

        It is telling. While he retains a hell of a lot of popularity, since the election I’ve had several soft National supporters say that they liked him a lot less after the election than they had before.

        I’d prefer not to have a parliamentary leader that doesn’t understand the parliamentary system and caucus system in their bones. Neither Kirk nor Lange did. Both achieved less for Labour and the voters that put them into power than they could have.

        • felix 32.2.3.1

          Yes, I should have said “at LEAST a term”.

          Agree about Key. He was totally shagged a week out from the election while Goff was just warming up.

          He’ll get a bit of a second wind from his win, but I can’t see him spending much time in the house this term. Even his leisurely schedule of boating, DJing, pet-care, modelling, stand-up comedy, boozing and schmoozing will feel like an insurmountable workload to him.

      • felix 32.2.4

        Albie, do you think keeping Graham Henry as coach after 2007 was a vote of no-confidence in anyone?

        Just because the shallow vapid vacuous Nats cut their leaders’ throats after every defeat is no reason to follow suit.

        • Albie Chase 32.2.4.1

          [lprent: A wellington political astroturfer – now blacklisted. ]

          I’m debating with you seriously here felix, it’s an interesting analogy on Graham Henry. I would suggest that Henry staying on after ’07 was the same reasoning that Helen stayed on in ’96 after she lost. Yes there was somebody else knocking at the door (in that case Goff, in Henry’s case Robbie) but the powers that be decided that Henry was still a world class coach, for the same reason that the powers that be in ’96 decided that Helen was a world-class leader, which she turned out to be by winning three elections.

          I suppose what it comes down to though, is do you actually believe Phil could win an election if he stayed on now? Or would he be another Rowling?

          Politics is much less forgiving than corporate management, which is what the ABs is.

          We haven’t seen the best of Shearer, Cunliffe or Parker yet, and won’t do until one of them steps up as leader. We have seen the best of Phil, and although he stepped up a lot, he was still leader when Labour got its lowest ever result and he didn’t make the grade.

          • Colonial Viper 32.2.4.1.1

            Meh

            Phil achieved preferred PM scores of between 14% and 19% by the end of the campaign.

            Any new contender would have to start from scratch. And face similar bullshit from the MSM.

            • Albie Chase 32.2.4.1.1.1

              [lprent: A wellington political astroturfer – now blacklisted. ]

              14 to 19% isn’t a very good score after three years when your rival for the job, the incumbent, is in the seventies. If that’s all you’ve got to after three years then it’s time to call it quits. Phil’s problem was that not even all of Labour’s base, that 27% who voted Labour, thought he was the best to lead the country. In fact for most of the time when Labour still was in the 30s, and he was struggling for double figures, two thirds of Labour’s voters didn’t have him as a preferred PM.

              If Labour chooses the right leader now that person can expect to be preferred by at least half of the base. So they’re not exactly starting from scratch.

              • felix

                I don’t really think you can expect that though Albie, although in theory it sounds like it makes sense.

                It seems that in reality (and I don’t mean that phrase to sound patronising) a bit of media exposure makes all the difference in the world. Phil didn’t do or say anything in the last month that he hasn’t been doing or saying for the last 3 years, the sudden pick-up in his preferred polling seems to me to be a result of having cameras to do and say it in front of.

                And I have no doubt that given the opportunity to continue to do exactly what he’s been doing – with the media taking notice – that people would warm to him more and more.

                It’s taken 3 years to get them to notice him at all, and a new leader will likely face the exact same brickwall combination from the media – a mix of indifference and the “Key can’t lose” narrative. Which of the contenders do you imagine is starting from a better position than Phil right now in this regard?

                The real point of the Graham Henry analogy was that until 2007, the All Blacks had a habit of ditching their coach after every defeat, meaning the lessons of the defeat were lost and they had to start again from scratch every four years. I think there’s something to be learned there.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Have to agree with all of the above.

                  The name of the warm body in the Labour leaders’ seat matters not if the MSM is just going to run another round of their stone walling, hatchet jobbing game on a new victim.

                  My feeling is that Goff should have stayed.

  33. Pete 33

    The Herald is reporting that Goff will take a few weeks before he stands down. That’s the right decision. Let the party nurse its wounds and have a bit of a think about where it wants to go – also, hopefully this will allow a consensus to emerge, rather than a split between the Cunliffe and Parker factions.

  34. Rain33 34

    I am not in favour of Cunliffe myself. Whoever is going to take over Labour’s leadership is going to have to have it in spades…charisma. John Key, for whatever reason, has massive appeal. Women were, according to reliable media sources, swooning over him throughout the campaign (barf). Brand Key is a force to be reckoned with. And don’t bother calling me shallow, it is a reality that heaps of people voted for Key because they liked him, and that likability translated into trust. A huge chunk of the voting public pay no attention to politics until the last month or so of an election cycle. In other words a lot of the people you need to get out and vote for you are, unfortunately, politically shallow.

    You only have to look at the Obama victory. Clinton (Hilary) was a shoe-in, until Obama entered the fray. I was there for the whole thing and he won people over with his eloquent speeches and charisma, and off course two key words, change and hope.

    Unfortunately David Cunliffe is quite polarising and in my opinion does not have the charisma necessary to compete with Brand Key (Drop the John and replace it with ‘Brand’ that is what you’re dealing with)

    At this stage I am leaning towards Shearer, but do not know enough about him yet. His inexperience is completely irrelevant to me. Referring again to Obama who was, according to the Clinton camp, no threat due to his inexperience.

    National have cottoned on to the fact that Presidential style campaigns, and Presidential style leaders are what wins elections these days. Labour needs to smarten up. You could have the most fantastic policies in the world, but it will all be for nothing if your delivery system is flawed. It is 2011 and the next election will be 3 years from now, when people will probably be even more superficial and shallow than they are now! Smile and wave won in 2011, know your enemy Labour.

    • Craig Glen Eden 34.1

      “Unfortunately David Cunliffe is quite polarising and in my opinion does not have the charisma necessary to compete with Brand Key (Drop the John and replace it with ‘Brand’ that is what you’re dealing with)”

      Cunliffe is not “polarizing” you are talking shit quite frankly and as for Charisma yup now you going both ends. Cunliffe will comfortably see of Key, Parker would be left looking like a lost Joe Ninety just as he did this election.

  35. Bored 35

    Interesting to see how many people are being lined up as Labour leaders….Parker, Cunliffe, Shearer, Little, Ardern…that is a pretty solid bunch of candidates.

    Now lets translate that to a Front Bench / Shadow Cabinet….add in Dalziel, OConnor, Maharey and you have talent beyond the reaches of National. Its day and night, chalk and cheese. This team is miles in front of Jabba, Crusher, Benebasher et al for public appeal and intellectual capability.

    Labour has no problems personnel wise in putting together a credible team. So its down to matching photo ops…Jacinda step up, the nice side of Cunliffes bad guy…both razor tongues.

    • alwyn 35.1

      What on earth makes you think that Maharey would give up a very cosy job at Massey in order to return to Politics?
      Surely you don’t think that he’s like Winston and needs the MPs perks to maintain a lavish lifestyle?

    • just saying 35.2

      Maharey? As in Steve?

      I understand Goff is stepping down pretty much immediately. So I guess we’ll find out pretty soon.

    • mac1 35.3

      Bored, I had the same thought about the quality of that line-up. A pity that a focus on presidential style campaigns don’t feature that depth. Labour needs to be able to match its opponent in policy, team and leader considerations to allow for whatever mix of campaign styles comes up in 2014.

    • Jess 36.1

      I’ll repeat here what I said there:

      Are you kidding? David Shearer is boring, lacks charisma, no oratory ability, no personality and no political nous. God, people claiming he can be leader is just depressing

      • felix 36.1.1

        Seems it’s mostly National supporters wanting Shearer to lead Labour, Jess. Not hard to see why.

  36. geoff 37

    really shallow, initial perception of leadership candidates…
    Cunliffe: smugly
    Parker: weak mummas boy
    Little: looks like Beaker from the muppets
     

    • Colonial Viper 37.1

      Whereas Key is a smarmy New York Banker, English is a spoilt private school kid and Brownlee a lazy lard ass.

      And after all that no one is any better off, are they.

  37. gingercrush 38

    The problem with people here staying Goff should stay on is that he’s already made his decision and I’m not entirely anybody in Labour who want the leadership want Goff to stay around. You can’t blame right-wing commentators when its Labour that seems to be telling us everything that is going to happen. People who write for this blog have more influence in labour than any right-wing commentator so I find such talk nonsense.

    The problem with Cunliffe and Parker is that both were with Helen Clark and both have been a senior part of a team that have focused their attacks on John Key. I personally believe Labour needs a leader that will be able to transcend John Key and campaign for the next three years in a positive way. I don’t see Cunliffe capable of that and I don’t rate Parker as a leader. Parker should be the Deputy Leader for any leader. He’s in the Cullen mould and can be a workhorse. I don’t really get the glowing reports for Jacinda Ardern either. She is way too young to be anywhere near the leadership. All that will do is taint her making any future leadership prospects difficult. In an ideal world Maryan Street would be able to be a Deputy. Unfortunately for her people see another Helen Clark (in many ways that would actually be a good thing). Grant Robertson is a possibility but I’m not sure anyone in labour are ready for him to lead the party.

    I have no idea who Labour will choose. People here seem to think keep Goff or if Goff is to go then Cunliffe. That makes me smile for I believe some of you have siously bad judgements. I suspect though it actually doesn’t matter who the leader of Labour actually is. Its behind-the-scenes stuff that seems to require seriously changing. But I don’t think Labour is ready for that task either.

    Of course you could just simply wait for the electorate to change tides. It happens everytime. No matter how competent anyone is. No matter what you’ve done in politics. Eventually what goes up must come down and what comes down as proven by both National and Labour goes back up. And no I’m not talking media because I don’t buy that argument either. So wait and watch the electorate become weary with the government as they did with Helen Clark and Labour after 2002. I know many here said National attracted soft voters. True to an extent but they can stick around for a while. Perhaps this election cycle they’ll switch back to Labour.

    I’m not sure. I think most electoral wins can be predicted just after the election. 1996 it was obvious that if Labour didn’t win that time they’d be in 1999. 1999 I wasn’t entirely sure Clark could survive. 2002 I had no doubt we’d see Labour win in 2005. 2005 you could really see that National was very likely to win 2008. I said after the 2008 election National would get back in. This time. I don’t know. 2014 could be the most open election since 1993. Both National and Labour have the ability and the capacity to win in 2014. Its going to take many factors most of which remain unforseen. But its there for the taking.

  38. ak 39

    The next election won’t be decided in any caucus room or even parliament. And it won’t be determined by any “talent”, or “experience”, or debating skill. Witness one J. Key.

    It’ll be determined in exactly the same place as last time: in the living rooms and tabloids of the swinging voters. The apolitical by definition, the anti-political by inclination.

    The politically-imbued Goffy and the 3 Daves bore them at best, repulse them at worst.

    Ardern, Little, Mahuta, and O’Connor are the only Lab options that will stall the remote-fingers. The only remote-fingers that matter.

    Comments from the politically-interested and already-comitted are, again by definition, hopelessly disconnected from the crucial deciders and thus irrelevant.

    Except for this one, of course.

    • Hanswurst 39.1

      I have difficulty crediting your assertion that an apolitical voter would be able to tell the difference between O’Connor, Little, Goff and Cunliffe. They’re all politicians.

      • Tom Gould 39.1.1

        Or Joyce, English, Kaye, Collins, Ryall, and Brownlee. They’re all politicians. The million ‘non-voters’ didn’t want them, or Goff, and they didn’t want Key either. Which means the next Labour leader has a good shot at getting their vote next time around. Key gave them his best shot, and failed. So it’s wide open next time.

  39. Labour needs to just take its time andick not be pushed into a quick decision promted by the Right-Wing press.Already the Tory run media is planning the next election. If Labour isnnot carefull the media will start to dominate who our leader will be /Tell them to piss off

  40. One Anonymous Bloke 41

    Phil Goff on facebook:
    “I’ve just announced I’m stepping down as Leader of the Labour party, effective December 13. Thank you everyone, for all your support over the past three years.”

    FWIW I’m sorry to see him go.

  41. tsmithfield 42

    “Choosing our next PM”

    So Labour will be choosing a leader who is under the age of 20, then. :smile:

    • felix 42.1

      That joke only works if you admit that your thinking is blinkered and reactionary.

      No surprises there though, you’ve always made it clear that “leader” for you is synonymous with “old white rich straight man”.

  42. millsy 43

    Cunliffe and Parker to me both look like smarmy tossers. They are hardly going to set their party faithful on fire.

  43. lprent 44

    I have been doing electoral work in Auckland for decades. But those out of area tables are pretty useless because they are in the small booths close to the electorate. Virtually none of them are on the main roads that people use. They aren’t marked at the road. They are not in the shopping centers. I have never understood why they are there in Auckland, because they get virtually no votes taken ( and they are a bloody pain to put scrutineers into).

    I live on the edge of Auckland central. None of them are on a route I would use (unless I was heading to the airport). All of them are too far away from any destination that I would be heading to, and usually they are short of parking. The same thing applies in Mt Albert tables out of the electorate.

    My guess was that the law was put in for the wee towns at the edge of rural electorates?

    I’m sure that you realize that there was a point in your comment. A pity that you did not express it particularly clearly.

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