- Date published:
12:33 pm, July 16th, 2020 - 127 comments
Categories: Deep stuff, election 2020, greens, labour, Politics, workers' rights - Tags: chloe swarbrick, election 2020, greens, helen white, labour
One day the rooster, next day the feather duster.
Nikki Kaye has shown her total faith in temporary Tory leader Judith Collins by abruptly announcing her retirement from Parliament.
This squarely brings the seat of Auckland Central into play.
Kaye won the seat four times thanks to the assistance of the Green Party.
Four elections in a row, Kaye’s vote was less than the combined vote of the Labour and Greens’ electoral candidates. Four times in a row, Kaye’s majority was less than the Green’s electoral vote.
The Green’s long time candidate, Denise Roche, is not standing at this election. She became a list MP anyway, and served NZ well until the Green’s leadership meltdown in 2017 cost her a place in Parliament.
In 2020, the Greens have put up the excellent MP Chloe Swarbrick as their candidate. Labour have put forward the equally excellent workers’ advocate Helen White, who came a close second to Nikki Kaye in 2017.
While we don’t know who the replacement Tory candidate will be, the odds are it will be someone high profile, because National cherish the seat.
To bang the drum yet again, electorate seats are important.
The party vote determines the overall numbers in Parliament, but it’s the results in individual seats that make the difference on the ground.
Electorate MP’s are often the place of last resort for Kiwi battlers. When you’re doing it tough, a sympathetic ear and practical assistance from your local MP can make all the difference.
If your local MP is a Tory, well, you’re on your own.
However, if the electorate MP for Auckland Central is a hard working, clever and articulate advocate for the rights of working people and their families, you’re in with a chance.
The choice for the Greens is tricky. They really do need to max out their party vote, but they also do need to get their heads around MMP and recognise that they are a list party only.
The Greens should do the right thing by voters in Auckland Central and give the nod to the Labour candidate.
It won’t harm their overall result and it will absolutely show that they have matured to the point where being a genuine partner in Government is fully deserved.
Or they can help elect a Tory MP for the 5th election in a row.
It’s not a hard call.
(Disclosure: both Denise Roche and Helen White are people I have worked with in the past. They’re both great.)