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The Standard

On Loyalty

Written By: - Date published: 7:04 am, November 20th, 2012 - 118 comments
Categories: labour - Tags:

The ABC club would have us believe that David Cunliffe has ‘openly undermined’ both David Shearer’s leadership and Phil Goff’s before him.

They appeal to the need for a ‘unified team’ and want David Cunliffe shot at dawn for supposedly threatening it.

These attempts to rewrite history are amusing but factually inaccurate. We all know who undermined Phil Goff’s leadership and it wasn’t David Cunliffe.

It was Grant Robertson and Trevor Mallard who made the decision to keep Phil Goff off the Labour billboards at the last election, openly admitting during an election campaign that they considered their leader a liability. Phil Goff’s stumble in the ‘show me the money’ debate was no one’s fault but his own – he got caught out not having done his homework on a flagship policy and only the most determined denier of reality could try to pin that one on anyone else.

We also know who has been undermining party unity during David Shearer’s leadership, and again, it isn’t David Cunliffe. It’s the ABC club who ring up Duncan Garner for a giggle about how much they hate their own colleague.

Where is their loyalty? When their co-worker is being run down in the media where are they to defend him and insist that the silly rumours are malicious untruths? Oh, that’s right – they’re the ones who pushed him under the bus in the first place.

Chris Hipkins thinks Cunliffe supporters need to ‘take a long, hard look at themselves’. I would suggest that it’s the ABC club who need to do the soul searching here. Because the rank and file are not going to be lectured to about loyalty and unity by people who know precisely nothing about either of those things.

– Blue

118 comments on “On Loyalty”

  1. maffoo 1

    I believe the best thing Shearer could do today is make Cunliffe his number 3, or even number 2. This would put the two most popular (and the one most competent) Labour MP’s directly in the public eye. He could then make all the ABCers re-affirm their loyallty to the PARTY, not each other, & at the same time stamp his iron fist on the plebs who will, honestly, play no part in returning LAbour to power.
    IF Mallard & co baulk at the thought of Cunliffe having power, they can be accused of treachery & will either have to back up or shut up. If Shearer sacks or demotes Cunliffe, it will tell the world he is scared, and is a puppet of the ABC.

  2. On ya.  I just posted this in open mike …

    Can I surprise everyone by saying that I think that disciplinary action should be taken by David Shearer.

    There is a member of caucus who has destabilized the party for the past few years by continuously leaking to the media.  Last weekend was an example.  In a clusterfuck of gigantic proportions he managed to undermine all the good that Shearer’s speech achieved by feeding the meme that Cunliffe is running a challenge.

    Cunliffe did refuse to say how he would be voting in the future on the leadership as his right.  Others also refused to say how they would vote, including one Trevor Mallard.  

    Loyalty to a leader should always be conditional on the interests of the party and a review is perfectly appropriate.  Blind loyalty is not in the interests of the party.

    But by continuing to feed this meme this leaker has not only sought to undermine Cunliffe’s future but has also undermined Shearer’s leadership.

    I wonder if this is the intent?  

    • Bill 2.1

      But by continuing to feed this meme…

      Oh, I think the meme can be far simpler than that Micky…simply ABC – Anything But Clever.

      Let’s assume Cunliffe doesn’t suddenly produce the numbers out of a hat. I mean, even if he can, why would he?

      Demote Cunliffe and he sits on the back benches over summer. Sounds quite relaxing. And then come February…

      Promote Cunliffe, and then come February…

      And with the 40% threshhold, it means there would be no reason why Shearer couldn’t simply enter a two horse race with Cunliffe. (ie, he wouldn’t have lost his mandate at that point) But since Robertson wants the leadership (and possibly Parker), well…what are they going to do? Fess up that they were never loyal in the first place and stand in a leadership race too? Or back Shearer in his? Seems like a lose/lose situation for them. And for all of the ABC crew from where I sit.

    • David H 2.2

      Also the “Cunliffe was undermining the leadership in interviews.” What bollocks! It was that nasty little Garner wannabe Gower, who every ten mins stuck his mike in Cunliffes face, and asked the same question over and over again. If it was me, Gower would be walking funny, with the mike stuck up his arse. What disgusting behavior for a supposed journalist, and it just shows how scared Shearer is if he still blames Cunliffe after that little show. And it shows that Shearer is as blind, as Key is amnesiac. And I for one will not vote for a blind, deaf, stuttering fool!

  3. Ron 3

    I think that a leader who insists on a vote – three days after the party has changed the rules to make leadership votes more democratic – is being disingenuous to say the least. If the rules were changed to be more democratic why would you hold a ballot under the old rules. I understand that the change to party rules will become useable by end of November. If so why not wait and hold ballot in December. It is totally fraudalent to hold a ballot now just so you can save some embarassment down the line.

    • Stephen 3.1

      My understanding is that the vote will be held under the new rules (I could be wrong).

    • lprent 3.2

      The vote today is apparently being held under the new rules – 60%. Apparently (I haven’t seen confirmation) it isn’t a secret ballot which is … Extraordinary.

      But even if it was secret, I don’t think it is likely to get any result other than 100% support for Shearer. Which makes it rather pointless since there is a mandatory leadership vote in Feb.

      • Ron 3.2.1

        How can it be held under the new rules which require a vote from party members as well.
        If it were held under the new rules there is no way Shearer would win as it has been confirmed time again that the rank & file members have lost faith in him.

        • karol 3.2.1.1

          The caucus vote decides whether the whole membership votes for a new leader.  If over 40% of caucus votes against Shearer, there would be a leadership context which the caucus, members and affiliates would vote in.

          But if Team Cunliffe decides to support Shearer in a caucus vote today, nothing much happens until the regular leadership vote in February – including voting by members and affiliates.  

          Although, it seems Cunliffe will be demoted today.  And Shearer will hope it makes him look like a strong and strongly-supported leader.  Without today’s vote of confidence in Shearer, his team are concerned he will look like a lame-duck leader.

          Otherwise, we just wait and see how well Shearer does between now and February.   If he stays strong he’s safe.  If he keeps fluffing about, he’s gone-sky.  And other contenders will take a shot at the leadership.

          • rosy 3.2.1.1.1

            Without today’s vote of confidence in Shearer, his team are concerned he will look like a lame-duck leader

            The ridiculous thing is he will be a lame duck leader at least until February. This enforced loyalty ballot solves nothing. He really does need to sack someone – and that would be the person whispering in his ear.

          • Ron 3.2.1.1.2

            Trouble is what is likely to happen between now and February that one could judge Shearer, the answer nothing.
            Politics is pretty dead in the water over summer you will not see Shearer debating any important issues on TV or anywhere else.
            Parliament does not need to resume until last Tuesday in February and even if it does start earlier there will not be much debating time to even gauge Shearer’s ability.
            So we could well go into the February vote without anyone seeing Shearer in a position that could show his improvement or otherwise.

          • David H 3.2.1.1.3

            When Shearer demotes Cunliffe it will be the final nail in the coffin of a very average leadership, a leadership noted for the fact that the leader did not in fact lead. You see he has this ring through his nose, and the string is connected to, and it is pulled by Trevor Mallard and the rest of the dinosaur ABC brigade, they think that by controlling the leader then the rest of us will fall in line, and they will just be voted back in, to plug their greedy spiteful mouths, and grasping little hands, firmly onto the gravy train for another 3 years.

        • lprent 3.2.1.2

          Ron: I think you are thinking about what happens when a leader steps down or dies. Then it goes straight to the electoral college vote with a 40-40-20 weighting.

          In the case where there is an incumbent leader then they can be challenged at any time and must get just over 50% of caucus. In this case today David Shearer is saying he wants more than 60% or he will stand down.

          Once every 3 years after an election there is a mandatory leadership vote for an incumbent if there is one. They must get the support of over 60% or it goes to the party. This is what will happen in feb.

      • IrishBill 3.2.2

        My impression of it is that Shearer’s team decided to push up a vote because they thought they could cut Cunliffe off at the pass. They then realised it won’t replace the Feb vote but they have to go ahead with it because they told Vernon Small that’s what they were going to do.

        My impression of Cunliffe’s response is that he either can’t get the numbers for today or he’s decided his numbers will grow between now and Feb. – given previous form it’s quite likely that Shearer and his crew will continue to make cock-up after cock-up (turning on the membership after just getting a spanking from them is indicative of their strategic capabilities I think.).

        • Bill 3.2.2.1

          What intriques me is that under the old rules, a leader who lost confidence was gone. But these new rules mean they can reasonably stand for their position as they’ve only lost some of the confidence of caucus. And the members and affiliates may well still have confidence in them (in theory).

          But come February, what do the players in the Anything But Clever crew do? Back Shearer (the man they claim to be their man – at least in public) in his run with the wider party vote? Or show their true colours by running against him at that point?

          I can’t see how it can possibly pan out for them in any positive way.

          • Akldnut 3.2.2.1.1

            Whilst they have this vote today, if Shearer survives which I suspect he will the ABC club will still have the option of changing teams in Feb by citing they are following the wishes of members in their constituency. By doing this they can have a dollar both ways.

        • geoff 3.2.2.2

          Right on, Irish +1

        • lprent 3.2.2.3

          That was what I figured as well about where it wound up. This escalation over the last two days is just an irritating sideshow because it just distracts Shearer and the caucus from doing their jobs more effectively than they had been doing.

          The party wants more input into the caucus? Hardly surprising when you see this kind of beltway crap.

      • David H 3.2.3

        The only thing thats important is this. TV3 Garner and Gower shit stirred all weekend (in fact they have been spinning this bullshit for months.) SO the vote and demotion of Cunliffe only means one thing. The Labour party is OWNED by TV3. and Shearer is so weak and insecure in his leadership that he listens to journo’s and weevils in his ear, instead of looking and making up his own mind. What a plonker.

    • My guess is the one person who’ll vote against Shearer will be Mallard, so he can then pin the one vote against on Cunliffe.

      • tinfoilhat 3.3.1

        [deleted]

        [lprent: astroturfer ]

        • Colonial Viper 3.3.1.1

          No no no if you are a keen Labour supporter sign up and stay signed up…we now have the constitutional tools to take back the heart and soul of this party, at long last, from the neolibs and the careerists.

          Sign up, stay signed up, we really need every member now, more than ever.

      • lprent 3.3.2

        You really don’t like Trevor do you?

        He does tend to be a bit of a loose cannon, has evident impulse control problems, and sucks as a moderator. But I don’t think he is all that bad in his basics. I have more issues with the behaviour of others in caucus.

        • Colonial Viper 3.3.2.1

          Fascinating who you might be referring to here. Personally, I’ve always got on with Trevor fine.

          I gotta say though that the conduct of some of the ABC crowd has been fucking abysmal and hypocritical. I advocated hard for Cunliffe last Dec on The Standard, and from then through to now, never ever heard him personally attack any fellow Labour MP. And in response, he’s had abusive shit heaped on him by his “colleagues”.

          • David H 3.3.2.1.1

            Exactly and I blame Mallard and co, they are the desperate ones, trying to hold onto yesterday and not giving a rats as to how much damage they do. And I have NEVER, EVER heard Cunliffe run down another MP in his own party, unlike some. So the sooner the last of the ‘old’ guard is gone the better, they are now ALL tainted by the leaker. Then Labour can finally get on with rebuilding.

        • Kevin Welsh 3.3.2.2

          I partly agree LP, he has been a very effective MP inside the debating chamber and I have no doubt he is an excellent representative of his consituents, but when it comes to strategy, timing and support he is a fucking clown and an embarrassment to the party.

      • David H 3.3.3

        I wouldn’t put it past him, Sprout.

  4. Craig Glen Eden 4

    Great to see Trotter telling the truth with regards to the media being Manipulated for years now by Mallard and Co.

    Also very interesting that Shearers lot are trying to make out Shearer is the great reformer which is totally not true, Shearers lot tried with everything they could to stop the 40%60% trigger and had they succeeded it would have insured the members had very little influence over any future vote on the Leadership.

    Gaynor looked very uncomfortable this morning as he had to front the suggestion that he along with Gower have been easily manipulated and they have.

    Chris Hipkins verbally attack yesterday was totally un acceptable and if Shearer thinks letting a whip behave like that is in the interest of the Party then he is not fit to be Leader.

    • maffoo 4.1

      Chris Hipkins is just a boy, being led around by those senior members who he idolises. And he will fall with them, in a spectacular fashion.

    • Jim Nald - Once Was National 4.2

      Ok, after a good night’s sleep, the first thought on this today is that the call for the 4pm vote for this afternoon was a hasty reaction in attempting to pre-empt certain matters. Instead of embracing and celebrating the change towards modernising and democratising the party, and using the opportunity to demonstrate good leadership, what is the Shearer-Robertson team afraid of?

      • Ron 4.2.1

        and why 4.00pm. Is that the earliest that some people can get out of bed?
        Or are we just aiming for the 6.00pm news

        • karol 4.2.1.1

          Partly probably the 6pm news thing.  Also, some of the MPs have to travel to Wellington from other parts of NZ.

          • Colonial Viper 4.2.1.1.1

            Reg Tue caucus meeting starts at 9am does it not. Anyways, the whole thing has been tightly choreographed and Gower/Garner et al already have the script for the afternoon.

            • Ron 4.2.1.1.1.1

              All we need now is for Israel to move into Gaza and the whole labour party shamoozle would be off the news.
              Wonder if I can give PM of Israel a call.

  5. hush minx 5

    And what will they do with Shane after his attack on the greens? All in all a fine pickle the abc find themselves in due to their single minded ambition to squash their best performer.

  6. All sadly true Blue. Good post.
    Today Shearer will demonstrate just what a tough democracy lovin tough guy he really is by punishing someone for being better at their job than he is. And in so doing he will bang the last nail in his own coffin, much to Robertson’s delight. And an epic shit fight will commence, one that will make events to date look like a friendly bbq on a summer’s day.

  7. bomber 7

    This is a media manufactured leadership crisis manipulated by the ABCs. There was never a leadership challenge, and Chris Hipkins defamation against Cunliffe is a new low.

    What a terribly misjudged response when there was so much hope that the leadership had listened.

  8. Anne 8

    Chris Hipkins thinks Cunliffe supporters need to ‘take a long, hard look at themselves.

    Can you tell me Blue where Hipkins was reported to have made this comment?

    I suspect he has deliberately repeated the self same words I used in a comment yesterday morning on this site that was (pleasingly) well received by readers. If so, I should take great delight in sending him an email applauding him for being oh, such a clever little man :)

    I thought ‘they’ didn’t read blogs – especially The Standard.

    • karol 8.1

      Anne, Hipkins is reported to have said that here, but doesn’t mention blogs:

      He said Mr Cunliffe’s allies should also “take a long, hard look at themselves”.

       

      • Anne 8.1.1

        I made the following comment on this site earlier yesterday:

        I think certain members of Caucus need to take a long hard look at themselves.

        He may have been throwing the line back at me.

        If so, thanks for taking notice Chris Hipkins. Nice to know some of you do read The Standard after all. :)

        • David H 8.1.1.1

          Well Anne if they are reading this then they should know what a shit storm they are going to bring down upon their own heads. So be it.

  9. Enough is Enough 9

    This is a fucking circus

    John Key and Russell Norman must be sitting their looking on in disbelief with a cheeky smile on their respective faces..

    Key’s corruption and incompetence should be the headlines. Instead we are airing our dirty laundary and drowning out the real stories.

    Shambolic.

    How can this party at war possibly sort itself out within 24 months?

    • One Tāne Huna 9.1

      “How can this party at war possibly sort itself out within 24 months?”

      Leadership. Some people have it. Others are mumbling and vague and squander goodwill.

    • Santi 9.2

      It can.
      The “crisis” is manufactured by the media, so Shearer needs to keep his nerve, punish those against him, and reenter the political battle as a strong leader.

      • lprent 9.2.1

        What?
        All of the party members who aren’t that happy with him right now?
        Tell me, what will he do – expel them?
        Try to stop people commenting here?

        His problem isn’t really in caucus or in the beltway. That leaves some very limited avenues for what he can do apart from get a lot better faster in his role of running caucus and presenting the main face of the party to the public. Which coincidentally is what most of his critics on the left would like him to do.

        Now he could argue that is what he is doing with Cunliffe. But many, including me, tend to regard the actions that have been taken in that regard as being a clusterfuck from the start to this afternoon. Sure Cunliffe has ambitions. He has an opportunity to exercise those in Feb when it is mandated to happen. In all likelihood he would have lost in caucus by failing to get 40%. Then there is no possibility of doing much for the next 2 years. Instead he has virtually guaranteed that his leadership will remain a focus until the election.

        The people that Shearer should be pounding on in caucus are Shane Jones and whoever gave him the crap advice about his strategy for the last couple of days that is starting to make me long for Feb.

  10. karol 10

    There’s been an interesting Twitter conversation been going on with Rachel Smalley this morning.  It looks to me like Rachel is agreeing that all the media leaks have come from Team Shearer and none from Team Cunliffe.  It’s here:

    Rachel Smalley
    ‏@Rachel_Smalley
    Political commentator Chris Trotter on @FirstlineNZ this morning http://bit.ly/Tc4Kj1  Has Camp Shearer manipulated the media? 

    Alex Coleman ‏@ShakingStick
    @rachel_smalley
    @firstlinenz Well I’ve not seen any stories that looked like they were based on Cunliffe tips, and plenty from the other way  

    Rachel Smalley ‏@Rachel_Smalley
    @ShakingStick@FirstlineNZ Yes, it’s been staggering. Made for a busy few days.  

     

  11. Pete 11

    This just exposes Shearer’s own insecurities. He must know he’s a weak communicator. He must know the party isn’t keen on third way politics. He must know that makes him a liability and is therefore looking for plots everywhere.

  12. tracey 12

    The difference between national and labour is that national hide this shit. The good thing is this shit is pretty open and everyone can see who seeks to serve the country and who is self serving. It takes longer to see it in the nats cos they hide the shit… Until someone with more money than them, kdc, exposues the source of the stench. Robertsons silence is deafening. His aspirations are all too clear. It seems there is no leader in the lp.

    • Santi 12.1

      That’s a very good point. Where is Grant Robertson in all this drama? Sitting on the fence awaiting the outcome?

      • seeker 12.1.1

        Grant is busy posting Shearer’s speech clip on red alert and telling commentators to “Enjoy”.That is the last thing I felt when I watched it- he was just as bland as before. I would rather hear about its content from the enthused than watch it. It was unbearable (for me) after 4 minutes. “Enjoy” I did not. And he had autocue apparently. Perhaps this was what made him appear so bland and ‘papier mache’.(I was going to say wooden, but wood pulp is softer.)

        Is Mr.Robinson Shearer’s minder and promoter-something like the Grand Vizier in Aladdin.
        I thought he was his deputy, not his publicity agent, PR person, interpreter or apologist. Perhaps at the beginning, but surely not 10 months on.
        David Shearer makes it very hard for people to get behind him. He should never have taken this job on. It is not his forte no matter how he, or others, wanted it to be.

  13. Sanctuary 13

    Shearer’s problem is the caucus faction that backed him and keep him in the job – the clique of under performing and over entitled time-serving leftovers – is loathed by the most of the party membership. The war over the leadership isn’t paricularly about Cunliffe and Shearer. They are just proxies in a war between a caucus clique and the rank and file, particularly the Auckland rank and file vs the self-serving Wellington based clique identified in the person of Trevor Mallard.

    Shearer made a leftward leaning speech to save his skin at the conference, and did enough to convince enough members that his execution be stayed and he get a(nother) chance. The calling of this leadership vote shows however that the Mallard gang has learnt nothing from its drubbing at the weekend and are instead busily launching into revanchist revenge taking against the proxy messenger. All demoting Cunliffe will do is create the suspicion Shearer told the conference what he thought it wanted to hear, in the hope that he and his backers can simply dispatch the proxy messenger to the back benches and go back to pastel pink neo-liberalism once the dust settles.

    But until the Mallard clique is purged and the membership taken back on side, Shearer is dreaming if he thinks he can simply return to business as usual tomorrow.

  14. tracey 14

    How many folks posting here are directly involved with the two factions? You dont have to say who you are but maybe declare your interest?

    • just saying 14.1

      No involvement whatsoever.

    • Sanctuary 14.2

      None whatsoever.

    • vto 14.3

      Ok, coming clean, the Vote Them Out faction will take over and I shall become the first ever non-existent Prime Minister of New Zealand….

    • Bill 14.4

      No involvement.

    • One Tāne Huna 14.5

      No involvement.

    • felix 14.6

      None.

    • Pete 14.7

      No involvement. Just another pleb.

    • rosy 14.8

      none at all

    • karol 14.9

      I have no personal involvement with either team. I am not a Labour Party member.  I have never been a member of any political party.

      I did give Cunliffe my electorate vote the last few elections, but also gave my Party vote to Greens. Cunliffe has been a very good electorate MP.  I’ve never had anything to do with the New Lynn branch of the Labour Party, or any communication with his team there.

      I prefer Cunliffe to Shearer, based on his performance in public places (speeches, the House, in the media)-  and on the content of the political policies and/or analysis provided by both over the last year or so. 

    • weka 14.10

      No involvement
       

    • Ron 14.11

      No involvement either just want to NZ have a healthy left government

    • Colonial Viper 14.12

      Searching The Std will show that I fully backed Cunliffe through last Dec’s leadership “primary” and I remain happy with that.

    • Rhinocrates 14.13

      No involvement. A former lifelong Labour voter (excepting the Douglas years). Now I’m an ex-Labour voter who’s voting Green. My mind has not been turned by Darth Cunliffe’s Sith mind tricks; it’s been turned by the rightward drift of the party over the last four years and now the indolence, incompetence, narcissism and viciousness of the ABC gang.

      If there was a definite, single moment or last straw when I decided that I was no longer a Labour supporter, it was Shearer’s insinuation that as a former sickness beneficiary, I’m a bludger. The gang’s orchestrated rage directed through Cunliffe at the party itself and the members’ push for democracy means that I’ll never vote Labour while any of them are in charge.

      • Ron 14.13.1

        Do you really think the Green party is a left or even centre left party. I get the distinct impression that at least one of the leaders is tilting the party to the right and would be more interested in coalition with National than Labour

        • Rhinocrates 14.13.1.1

          On many issues they are right-ish, and I have real problems with their Luddite element, but there is a genuine commitment to democracy and social justice within and without the party and most of all, the environment needs to be championed and none of the other parties are doing that.

          There’ll never be a party that’s 100% perfect, but on balance and especially compared with the others, I support them.

          I might consider Mana as Hone’s been maturing rapidly.

          Also, pissing off Shane Jones is a plus.

          • Ron 14.13.1.1.1

            Greens Commitment to democracy and social justice tell that to Sue Bradford and Sue Kedgley or even Nandor Tanczos

            • Rhinocrates 14.13.1.1.1.1

              I think that you’re seeing things in black and white and within a narrow frame at that. Compare them not with what they should be in an ideal world, but with the other parties in parliament.

              However, indeed, Sue Bradford was a loss to them, but a gain for Mana.

          • Galeandra 14.13.1.1.2

            Hang on a minute, R , what’ve you got against Luddites? Folk fighting for their own turf just as we are today. And, dammit, frakking and GE are steps too far, no matter how shiny the newest post-industrial baubles are.

            • Rhinocrates 14.13.1.1.2.1

              For me (insert more disclaimers here), it’s the general scientific and technical ignorance crossed with sweeping judgments that gives me face palms: Turei’s knee-jerk over the discovery of the Higgs Boson, the leader of the German Greens coming out against fusion energy simply because it’s nuclear without understanding – or caring to understand – the fundamental differences between fission and fusion and so on. Sorry, I don’t want to argue individual points because it’s not appropriate for this thread (and I don’t mean “talk to the hand” – I really don’t think that it suits this thread and I really should be working to meet a deadline I have this afternoon).

        • weka 14.13.1.2

          Do you really think the Green party is a left or even centre left party. I get the distinct impression that at least one of the leaders is tilting the party to the right and would be more interested in coalition with National than Labour

           
          If you think of politics in terms of a spectrum of left…centre…right (which isn’t the only way to think of politics), then sure, since Bradford and co left the Greens have moved in a rightwardly direction towards the centre. They’re still to the left of Labour.
           
          This is a good move because it means the Greens will attain some political power. It works because it’s created a space for Mana, and I trust both the Greens and Mana to be able to work in a government together.
           
          Were the Greens to ever go into coalition with National, the party would be gutted. Look at what’s happened to the Maori Party. Look what happened to NZF when Peters betrayed his voters.
           
          I see plenty of evidence that the Greens would most definitely not go into a govt with NACT, which makes me think your comment is wishful thinking on your part (not sure why though)

    • Pascal's bookie 14.14

      none whatsoever. green voter mostly on the basis that I’d rather see labour in coalition with them that NZF or united, so voting green is the best way of forcing that.

    • gobsmacked 14.15

      Hi Tracey

      Apparently I am a cheerleader for Shearer … well, I was once:

      http://thestandard.org.nz/gary-shearer/comment-page-1/#comment-129172

      The ABC clique will claim that was before Cunliffe took control of my mind, the evil genius!

      Or maybe there’s a simpler explanation – it was before David Shearer became Labour leader, and showed that he’s not very good at it. (I know, that’s less fun, but there you go).

      • KJT 14.15.1

        I’am a Green.

        Though electorate voted Labour last time.

        Only looking at a functioning left wing bloc that can topple Key, and the neo-liberal religious blindness.

        I was not for either side until it became apparent Shearer was not up to it.

        It does not look like it is Shearer. And the caucus ABC club are making sure they white ant the only viable alternative. Like a lot of petulant kindergarten children.

    • RedBaron 14.16

      No Involvement whatsoever

  15. Santi 15

    I’m for Shearer.

  16. Outofbed 16

    How long do you have to be a member of the Party before you can vote;?
    IE; if I joined now do I get to vote in Feb?

    • Te Reo Putake 16.1

      Join now, and you are eligible to vote now.

      http://www.labour.org.nz/

      It’d be great if you do join up and even better if you get active in your local branch. When you sign up you’ll be put in touch with the local branch secretary. Get stuck in!

      • Colonial Viper 16.1.1

        100% on that TRP. The constitutional changes in the weekend mean that being an ordinary member of the Labour Party has real sway now.

        • Lanthanide 16.1.1.1

          “100% on that TRP. The constitutional changes in the weekend mean that being an ordinary member of the Labour Party has real sway now.”

          Erm, not really. If one of these 3-yearly votes goes to the membership, then you have a say. Otherwise nothing has really changed.

          • George D 16.1.1.1.1

            If one of these 3 yearly votes goes to the electorate, you have 40% of a say. Still, members can do other things (other than merely supporting the election of MPs, which seemed to be the case for many years).

      • King Kong 16.1.2

        What is the current membership of Labour? Or in other words, how many of us righties have to join in order to choose your next leader.

      • King Kong 16.1.3

        What is the number of current Labour members? Or in other words how many of us righties have to join in order to be able to choose your next leader?

      • Ron 16.1.4

        Thats fine but what happens if you live in an electorate that is never going to vote labour if hell froze over and keep on sending the useless McCully to Wellington for national.
        As long as a seat is a strong National seat no other party is willing to do much to try and put strong candidates up for election.
        So question is do you joing the local branch which probably does nothing for three years or not

    • lprent 16.2

      Yes. It takes some time for the membership to get dealt with as the number of office staff at Fraser House is pretty small. So do it over the net because that way you bypass the branch secretary being lackadaisical about sending it in (I speak from the experience of doing the job).

      Cost is peanuts and if you have income then the easiest way is to just set up a monthly debit. I finally got around to doing it earlier in the year after they finally got it online for existing members.

  17. Craig Glen Eden 17

    Im a Cunliffe supporter but more than that I support more member power in the party. Im personally sick of the self serving clique that use the media to damage the party whenever it looks like they are loosing control.

  18. Well Cunliffe is a threat, so it doesn’t suprise me. Will Labour win in 2014, as things stand it would be by the smallest of margins if at all. Shearer has several months to turn things around (and help Labour rise in the polls) before the February vote. If Cunliffe is punished, since Labour is in opposition putting people on the back benches isn’t going to do anything substantial i.e. Labour isn’t the government yet.

  19. maffoo 19

    The only political party ive ever joined was the ALCP, I support Cunliffe because he is articulate, focused, & obviously well educated. I also cant see anyone else in Labour to take down JK, which is absolutely vital.

  20. Karen 20

    I have no political credentials whatsoever, but from the sidelines I can say I totally support Cunliffe as he comes across as articulate and knowledgeable and is able to state the case clearly. I feel confident that he’s not going to muck up interviews and can think on his feet. I find Shearer on the other hand difficult to watch without my toes curling. Grant Robertson doesn’t cut the mustard at all – don’t know much about him but he looks wrong somehow. In my opinion Cunliffe is the only credible person to take the fight to the National govt. And that’s the main thing I’m concerned about – getting rid of this hideous government. Instead of ABC, the Labour party should be focusing on ABN (anything but NACT).

  21. Rogue Trooper 21

    Electorate-Labour, yes Stuart, but let the farmers pay for their own dam and keep us GMO free
    Party-A whole bunch of us are gonna encourage as many tangata whenua to vote Mana as possible
    (and we know a lot of maori people) :)

    • kiwicommie 21.1

      Hopefully Mana will win big next election. :)

      • Rogue Trooper 21.1.1

        Thank God we are a Pacific nation and that history blessed us to be hosted by maori
        (i enjoy your comments kc; yet, there has been a noticeable increase in insightful commentary by many people on TS lately, too many to mention, all grist to the mill.ad is one of the “cleverest” though, imo)

  22. Santi 22

    When it comes to Grant Robertson he probably had the sense to see this as a gold medal opportunity to keep his head down. He may yet win by default.

    Shearer has enough sense to know that power lies in the centre, so he’s trying to find a place between National and the Greens. Cunliffe must go.

    • odaboli 22.1

      Shearer is nice and inoffensice, so the right can rest easy. And the story about the ACC roofing guy? The GCSB video? The enigmatic policy vision? Its been a year – enough already. If you’re of the centre, Shearer isn’t a positive choice – he’s a nice guy you wouldn’t vote for, because he’s got nothing to say. We run the risk of getting one of ours in, under the implicit contract that he’s not going to do anything. Whats the point?

  23. Colin 23

    Why is Shearer so thick as to allow Robertson so much influence when Robertsons only concern is himself. Robertson needs to get over any thoughts of being leader. He has no electoral appeal

    • Hami Shearlie 23.1

      Court jesters never do Colin!! That’s what I think of when I see Grant Robertson – wrong look, wrong background, wrong for the South Auckland Pasifika vote being gay, a real lightweight intellectually compared with Cunliffe. Sort of got that McCully look going on!! As much grunt as a Furbie!!

  24. xtasy 24

    To me LABOUR is NOT left anymore anyway. It is a party trying to appeal to the brainwashed mass of people in the vague “centre’, whatever that means.

    That “centre” is so vague and largely a section of society, that is largely self serving, so that they do not care at all about underpaid migrants working in service jobs offering them nice meals and drinks, they do not care about beneficiaries struggling to survive, they do not care about even the tax dodgers and fraudsters, as long as they get a job paid by them.

    That in essence is much of what the BS NZ society is about, supposedly to “transparent” and “honest”, “100 per cent clean” and “green”. This whole country is such a total fake and full of BS, it is an insult to most. Yet those engaged in it will not want any knowledge of it, as long as their “lifestyles” are protected.

    Labour is suffering from the general social disease in this country, which is all abouts self interest, back stabbing, using and abusing whatever you can to serve your own interests.

    NZ is a totally screwed, BS society, that is the truth, brainwashed to the extreme by the way!

  25. Marcus50 25

    This leadership issue is not over. Shearer has won the current battle but has clearly divided the party faithful and in all likelihood the Caucus despite the unanimous endorsement he received yesterday. I doubt there is anything that has occurred this week that Cunliffe did not anticipate when he decided not to endorse Shearer’s leadership.

    The pressure is all on the Shearer camp now.

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