Len Brown stands down

Written By: - Date published: 9:14 am, November 8th, 2015 - 59 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, len brown, phil goff, Politics - Tags:



In breaking news Len Brown has announced he will not seek the Auckland Mayoralty next year.

Len Brown will not run for mayor of Auckland at next year’s local elections.

He made the announcement this morning on TVNZ’s Q&A.

Mr Brown said it has been an extraordinary challenge but also brilliant.

“I feel very humbled to be mayor of the first united Auckland.”

Phil Goff is expected to announce his candidacy for the Mayoralty on November 22.  There is no sign of a right wing candidate as yet.

59 comments on “Len Brown stands down”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    Phil Goff is expected to announce his candidacy for the Mayoralty on November 22. There is no sign of a right wing candidate as yet.

    Well, that’s an oxymoron.

    • lefty 1.1

      Yes it certainly is an oxymoron.

      It also raises two big questions:

      How right wing do you have to be before you stop being described as left, even in the Labour Party?

      How much harm can one person do in a political lifetime and still be seen as acceptable for public office?

      • Leftie 1.1.1


        “How much harm can one person do in a political lifetime and still be seen as acceptable for public office?”

        Ask those who still support John key.

    • mary_a 1.2

      @ Draco T Bastard (1) Funny you should say that. I was thinking exactly the same 🙂 Who needs a right wing candidate, when Goff is standing!

    • Leftie 1.3

      National and their msm friends have been promoting Goff for quite some time now. It worries me a lot when those from the right publically promote someone from the left. It means dirty politics are at play.

    • billmurray 1.4


  2. One Anonymous Bloke 2

    “…there is no sign of a Left wing candidate as yet. FIFY 😈

  3. Penny Bright 3

    Len Brown has made the (unsurprising) announcement that he won’t be standing for the Auckland Mayoralty in 2016.

    In my opinion, Phil Goff will be strongly promoted as his successor, because he will be seen as a safe pair of hands for the corporate interests who really run the Auckland region.

    In 2010 – the Auckland voter turnout was 51%.

    In 2013 – the Auckland voter turnout was 36%.

    For those who think that Phil Goff will be a ‘shoo in’ – I suggest you have a look at the results of the Avondale-Mt Roskill by-election back in 2000……

    Penny Bright

    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate

    • weka 3.1

      “I suggest you have a look at the results of the Avondale-Mt Roskill by-election back in 2000……”

      Where would we find those?

    • Steve Withers 3.2

      Voter turnout won’t have been helped by First Past the Post being used.

      In both elections (2010 and 2013) more than 50% of all votes cast didn’t elect anyone. In 2010 in the Albany Ward, over 80% of votes elected no one. The two elected got less than 10% each. Three of the 20 Councillors were acclaimed. Not one person stood against them. Not even over person. That won’t happen again. I’ll run myself if I have to, just to force a vote.

      Most the 20 Councillors didn’t even get 30% of the vote in their Ward. vote in their

    • Steve Withers 3.3

      Voter turnout won’t have been helped by First Past the Post being used.

      In both elections (2010 and 2013) more than 50% of all votes cast didn’t elect anyone. In 2010 in the Albany Ward, over 80% of votes elected no one. The two elected got less than 10% each. In 2013, 3 of the 20 Councillors were acclaimed (Quax, Brewer, Stewart). Not one person stood against them. Not even over person. That won’t happen again. I’ll run myself if I have to, just to force a vote.

      Most the 20 Councillors didn’t even get 30% of the vote in their Ward.

      “Why bother voting” would be an understandable feeling.

  4. tinfoilhat 4

    Good riddance.

    Another buffoon in a long line of poor Auckland mayors gone, sadly I don’t hold out much hope for much better when the next Mayor is appointed.

  5. Penny Bright 5

    Back in 2000, I stood as a candidate in the Auckland City Council Avondale – Mt Roskill by-election, and polled second to Noelene Raffills (only 700 votes behind).

    Won nearly 6,500 votes, over 4000 votes more than the City Vision candidate.

    Stood in this by-election, with the support of the Water Pressure Group, because we were sickened by the failure of City Vision Councillors to keep to their stated policies and promises to oppose Metrowater.

    In this 2016 Auckland Mayoral campaign – I WILL have a ‘team on the ground’.

    Already, I have had a number of people approach me, offering support.

    As Auckland Mayor – I will ensure that the RULE OF LAW is implemented and enforced, regarding the lawful rights of citizens and ratepayers to ‘open, transparent and democratically accountable’ local government.

    The ‘books’ WILL be opened, and I will ensure that the public know where all public monies are being spent, invested and borrowed.

    That is the first step in ensuring ‘cost-effectiveness’?

    Finding out where the costs fall?

    I am campaigning for CCOs to go, and all possible Council services and regulatory functions to be returned ‘in house’ – thereby cutting out layers of private sector, for profit CONTRACTOCRACY’ .

    Looking forward to a full frontal campaign against neo-liberal Rogernomics in the Auckland region.

    Is Phil Goff going to do this?

    I doubt it – particularly when he was part of the 1984 – 87 Labour Government which helped to wreck Auckland,(and New Zealand) in my opinion, with the Rogernomics ‘reforms’.

    Penny Bright

    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    • Chooky 5.1

      +100 Penny…Good Luck…I would vote for you!

      ( and good riddance to Len Brown….He is only stepping down because he knows he would NOT win. He was a disgrace and a corrupt example to his office…imo amazing what hypocrisy and undignified behaviour Catholic male politicians can get away with)

      • proud poppy wearer 5.1.1

        Chooky – Yes Len brown is vile, not sure why you have felt the need to smear Catholic male politicians, i’m sure there’s just as many protestant, hindu, muslim, merman, atheist etc politicians who are undignified hypocrites.

        • Chooky

          @ppw…Len Brown as a good Catholic man stood on family values…people voted for him on his family values platform…there has been a long history in the Catholic Left , especially in the USA and Australia, of male politicians and trade unionists hypocrisy ie they stand for conservative morality and conservative establishment family values ( for women) but their own personal lives are the absolute hypocritical opposite…and they are usually corrupt and abuse their positions of power



          … what pisses me off is

          1.)…the hypocrisy and dishonesty of this sexist male establishment species ( with an HONEST male or female politician there are no surprises and deception… you know what you are voting for)

          2.) … good women like Penny Bright get overlooked …who would be far better in the job, far more honourable and far less corrupt ( this is establishment sexism bias against good woman)

          • billmurray

            Well said Chooky.

          • srylands

            ” good women like Penny Bright get overlooked ”
            I assume you are taking the piss?

            This is a wealthy woman who bludges on her fellow ratepayers. That is not good. It is really bad.

            She wants to “open the books”. I have asked her repeatedly what that means and what she proposes to do with the information that is generated. What is the outcome she is seeking?

            She cannot answer.

            EDIT: Oh and she refuses to discuss her objective in bringing back a Ministry of Works model to local government. Just what we don’t need.

            If voting was restricted to ratepayers I doubt she would get 100 votes.

            • DoublePlusGood

              “Voting was restricted to ratepayers”
              You know everyone who lives in a rateable property pays rates, right? That includes people who rent, as their rent pays the rates bill.

            • Mike the Savage One

              At least she is Bright!

          • proud poppy wearer

            While I have some sympathy for those views. the problem with your analysis is that Penny is batshit crazy.


            • Matthew Whitehead

              1) You do realise the “eviction orders” for Occupy protests were straight-up illegal, right? No part of the government has the right to “evict” people from public spaces, that’s what the word “public” means. If the councils really wanted people gone from the spaces there are ways they could have arranged for that to happen legally. (I can even think of some tricky ways, like bringing in cleaners for the area, and arresting people for disturbing the peace if they don’t let the cleaners move their tents)

              2) People have a legal right to know why they’re being arrested at the time of arrest. (BORA, section 23(1)(a))

              3) What exactly is crazy about what she was saying? If you don’t think business interests control the political debate you haven’t met the modern Labour Party, let alone the modern National Party.

        • vaughan little

          short answer – she hates us.

    • Annabel 5.2

      Penny you have my vote! And my mum will vote for you too! We both think you have a fantastic moral standing, you are unique, quirky, very very clever and you are a fighter! You are awesome!

    • proud poppy wearer 5.3

      @PB the books have been opened




      One can certainly argue about how much is spent but to simplistically say bring it all back ‘in house’ when the average cost of the council employees and staff spend has been ballooning is twilight zone stuff.

      Any one who runs on a ticket of lowering spend coupled with rate controls for those paying rates will romp in, I would humbly suggest you have as much show of impacting the Auckland elections as Colin Craig has of being the next PM.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.4

      The ‘books’ WILL be opened, and I will ensure that the public know where all public monies are being spent, invested and borrowed.

      We also need to know where they’re coming from. IMO, that may actually be more important.

    • Sacha 5.5

      “I am campaigning for CCOs to go”

      So you are standing for the national election? – because that’s where such matters of law are decided, not in the Ak mayoral one.

    • Visubversa 5.6

      Yes, but you did not win. All you did was to put the “Sage of the Whau” into Council for however many years to vote with with C&R. And the Water Pressure Group did not win either. We still pay for water every couple of months and not through rates. No-one has heard from the Water Pressure Group since they helped give Banks a Council majority in 2001.

    • mary_a 5.7

      Good one Penny. All the best in your campaign. You can count on my vote.

    • Leftie 5.8

      @Penny Bright

      Good luck, you have my vote.

    • infused 5.9

      yeah, your not gona get anywhere.

  6. Ross 6

    It’s a pity Goff stood at the last election if he had aspirations to be mayor. What if he doesn’t become mayor – will he want to return to Parliament in 2017? And will Brown take Goff’s list spot?

    • The Fairy Godmother 6.1

      Brown can’t take goff’s place as he wasn’t on the list. Like any member I guess he could candidate for the list.

    • billmurray 6.2

      Goff is not resigning to stand for mayor, he is an electorate MP for Mt Roskill, several MPs are taking a interest in the seat including Jacinda Ardern and Michael Woods.

    • Steve Withers 6.3

      Why would the Labour Party accept Len Brown as a candidate? If it alienated voters they definitely would NOT do it. That’s one of the best things about MMP. You can’t put polarising people on your list without paying a high price.

      Example? The Greens doubled their share of the vote after Sue Bradford left to join Mana after she failed to be elected female Co-Leader.

      I have a lot of time for Sue Bradford. But the media had so demonized her that she was an electoral liability…. Not among Greens, but among the wider public. Once she left, the Green vote went well up.

      That why Brown won’t be on the Labour List.

  7. Ad 7

    The Mayor of any major city is loathed by family, councillors, and state government.

    But. Evaluate Mayor Brown by his delivery for Aucklanders:
    – One single District Plan.
    – Housing policy coherence with a hostile central government.
    – HOP card
    – Electric trains
    – Fantastic new waterfront
    – Successful Rugby World Cup delivery, and secured World Masters Games
    – Watercare tamed
    – unified rates system across whole of Auckland
    – City Rail Link under construction in January, and central government commitment
    – World-beating art gallery

    Sure, shagged staff. And?
    Wasn’t a leftie wet dream. So?

    He can put that on his pillow, his cv, and his tombstone.

    • Ross 7.1

      He can put that on his pillow? I didn’t know there was room. 🙂

    • Karen 7.2

      I agree. Auckland has had a great many mayors who were far worse than Len Brown. It is the right wingers on the council that people should be concerned about. That said, I am glad he is standing down.

      Not keen on Goff, but better than some of the hard right wing alternatives. Also it will be good to get him out of the Labour caucus and replaced with (hopefully) someone a bit more left wing.

      • Leftie 7.2.1


        Agreed. In comparison with John Banks, Len was way better.

        • Rodel

          Oh Jeez! Did you have to mention John Banks? ..nightmares again.
          A brick would be better than him.
          I sort of liked Len. Somewhat Clintonesque in a wet sort of way. and I quite like Goff…always have.

          • lprent

            I think that Phil Goff will suit the Auckland city voters quite well.

            • Chris

              Will what Phil Goff wants to do as mayor suit Auckland residents well?

              • lprent

                Always an interesting question. Of course there is a lot of difference between Auckland residents (100%) and Auckland voters. See the 2010 election turnout of about 50% and the 2013 election turnout of about 35%.

                You can’t campaign on the Auckland residents. For a starter children can’t substantively vote. And most of the people who can vote don’t.

                Now if you could figure out a magic way to get people to vote in the Auckland city elections, then I suspect that the campaigning would be different. In the meantime the people who can be bothered voting are a small subset of the residents. Roughly between 30% and 45%. In the two elections that we have had, about half voted for the winning candidate in a first past the post election. In other words roughly 15%-22.5%.

                So no. What he does probably won’t represent what Auckland residents want. It will probably represent something like (subject to council and CCOs) what the 15%-22.5% of people who voted for the winning candidate wanted.

                That is the reality of politics under first past the post. Phil Goff will probably suit that subset of the Auckland residents who voted for him. Why do you raise the question at all? Isn’t the answer politically obvious?

                Wishing for a different voting system may be something that would be a good thing. However in the short term, we have to live with the system we have. Phil Goff is likely to appeal to a wide enough range of eligible voters who are willing to vote to win the election, and he is likely to be the best left candidate we get who has a chance of winning the mayoralty.

  8. Peter 8

    If you say you will open the books they will do what ever it takes to make sure do don’t
    get in, and if you look like your going to win they will destroy you.

  9. tc 9

    DP spin has already fired up with banksy clone Brewer spinning it as Len lost labour support, painting Goff as ‘Left’ and whining on as he does so well.

    Bansky has also weighed in from his moral high ground “His leadership was, at least, quirky but irrelevant and, probably at worst, missing in action.” comedy gold there from the envelope man.

    • Leftie 9.1


      Not as irrelevant as John Banks, who tripled Auckland’s debt, and Auckland had nothing to show for that debt either.

  10. Brutus Iscariot 10

    Goff may not be left-wing enough for the Standard as a Labour Party leader, but the mayoralty is more about technocratic governance ability, and resistance to corruption by entrenched interests, than simple ideology. Even as Super Mayor he’s got few direct Social Justice levers to pull, even if he wanted to.

    With a solid pro-PT and pro-housing platform, I think he will be a good mayor. More importantly, he wouldn’t fuck things up and set Auckland back 20 years like Banks would.

  11. Mike the Savage One 11

    Bye bye Len, I won’t miss you. It is not so much for the bit of marital infidelity adventure, it is for other stuff you did or failed to do. Best wishes, and leave the chair and desk tidy for your successor, please.

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