Paddy Gower has the scoop that EPMU National Secretary Andrew Little is planning to stand in New Plymouth.
Labour high-flyer and union boss Andrew Little will launch his Parliamentary career by standing in the New Plymouth electorate.
Nominations open today, and 3 News has learned Little will put his name forward – confirmed by top-level sources in the Labour hierarchy.
But the man himself seems a little (excuse the pun) less definitive on the matter, telling NZPA:
Labour Party President Andrew Little says he may put his name forward to stand in the New Plymouth electorate but hasn’t made his mind up yet.
While just about every Labour Party president has become an MP at some stage (Bob Harvey is one of the few recent exceptions I can think off) it is unusual for a President to stand while holding the office and Little would need to handle the move carefully.
Having said that, in his ten years as the leader of the EPMU Little has shown he is capable, well organised and principled and he’d be a good asset for Labour and for the people of New Plymouth.
Of course there are already murmurings about Little as a future leader which the right are likely to be used by the right to try wedge the party. I’m not saying he wouldn’t be a good leader but it’s worth remembering how many others have been “the next leader of the Labour Party” and how few of them have actually done so. And let’s also not forget how unexpected it was that Clark would become the leader and make such a thorough job of it.
Hopefully Little will stand but he’s well known for playing his cards close to his chest so I reckon we may have to wait a while to find out.