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Media response to the Mt Albert By election result

Written By: - Date published: 8:24 am, February 26th, 2017 - 99 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, labour, Media, Politics - Tags:

The media response following Jacinda Ardern’s utterly convincing win in the Mt Albert by election is interesting although somewhat predictable.  Both the New Zealand Herald and the Dominion Post are suggesting that Ardern may be the next  deputy leader of the Labour Party.

In the Dominion Post Tracy Watkins said:

Jacinda Ardern’s win in Mt Albert comes with a big majority – and an even bigger headache for Labour leader Andrew Little.

Ardern’s profile in Auckland makes her an obvious choice for the deputy leadership but Little has repeatedly passed her over for Wellington based veteran Annette King.

If Labour want to ring the generational changes under Little’s leadership he can’t afford to keep making the same mistake.

King is a caucus favourite and popular with the party faithful but served in both the Clark and Lange governments. But King’s biggest liability is her location. Little, King and Labour’s finance spokesman Grant Robertson are all Wellington based.

It’s always been considered electoral suicide for either Labour or National not to have at least one Auckland based MP in their leadership line-up.

And in the Herald Clare Trevett repeated the idea saying:

It is likely by now Little is wondering if he could squeeze a bit more profile and a few points in the polls out of having Ardern as his deputy instead of King.

That is no indictment of King – but there is a bit of magic about Ardern.

Of course the last thing the party should do is take advice from the media. But the question concerning Ardern becoming deputy leader may be a matter of when rather than if.

99 comments on “Media response to the Mt Albert By election result ”

  1. Jenny Kirk 1

    There’s no need for The Standard to keep perpetuating the “jacinda for deputy” theme – Annette does a good job as deputy, and Andrew Little has just said there is no vacancy.
    The media theme is intent on destabilising Labour – that’s what its about . Time to let that one go, and for Labour to just get on with campaigning without such distractions.

    What I’m more intrigued with – is why did Julie Anne Genter do so poorly ? I was expecting her to get more votes than she did (1489).

    • Brendon 1.1

      I agree this constant media speculation about Jacinda is just another way the media turns a good story about Labour into something that is negative and destabilizing for Labour.

      The objective outcomes of the by-election was that Labour and Jacinda achieved what they were aiming for -they won the seat.

      The Greens and Julie-Anne didn’t achieve their goal of raising its profile -Julie Anne got no higher percentage of the vote than what Russell Norman achieved in the 2009 Mt Albert by-election -the low teens. The Greens did not change the perception that they are a little party only able to attract 10 to 12% of the vote.

      The TOP party were hoping to capitalise on the absence of a National party candidate to give their campaign a boost. But they got less than 5% of the vote. This will raise concerns in the general election that a vote for TOP will be a wasted vote because TOP will not make the 5% threshold.

      These objective facts which we have learnt from the by-election indicates if the public want to change the government it will be Labour that does the heavy lifting.

      You would expect unbiased political journalists to have laid out these factors so the public understand the choices they will have in September.

      • Pete George 1.1.1

        “These objective facts which we have learnt from the by-election indicates if the public want to change the government it will be Labour that does the heavy lifting.”

        Yes, I think that’s a good assumption. Can they manage that, given that they seem to have conceded they are relying on a helping hand from Greens?

        They have time to change their strategy and to go hard out on their own, despite the MoU. But if the do that there’s a risk of the Greens competing with them much more for votes, they won’t want to lose ground.

        It’s going to be an interesting campaign, even with just the current knowns.

      • Waz 1.1.2

        The Greens would have done much better against anyone but Jacinda.

        They did raise their profile, even if they didn’t raise their share of the vote. More importantly though, the two parties demonstrated excellent cooperation. I think green-leaning voters will be more inclined to give them the party vote now.

        • Brendon 1.1.2.1

          I agree that the Greens (and Labour) showed a lot of professionalism in establishing a good working relationship with the Labour party. But the concern is that so far there is no evidence it is working for the Green party. But by-elections are weird so maybe it will be the general election where this strategy bears fruit for the party.

        • Ed 1.1.2.2

          I think that is key to the future. The First past the post voting system for electorates does not give us information about preferences. Voters had a choice, but we do not know how close many may have been to voting for the Green candidate. The impression that both candidates gave is that they will work well together, but in a traditional Labour seat, it is not surprising that people voted for Labour – as unlikely as it now seems, thee was talk of National encouraging votes for the Green Party to either allow another to come through the middle, or to try and make capital out of a lower percentage vote for Labour than would otherwise apply. Instead National voters seem to have stayed at home, but voters would not have known that at the time. I think the Green Party should be reasonably pleased with the media coverage they achieved, and with the degree to which it is accepted that they have a place in a future government. LAbour and the Greens are displaying a maturity that NAtional doesn;t even try to achieve – National appears to regard any “support partner” (except perhaps Peter Dunne) as temporary and expendable.

      • Skinny 1.1.3

        “These objective facts which we have learnt from the by-election indicates if the public want to change the government it will be Labour that does the heavy lifting.”

        That statement doesn’t match up with the 70% no-show voter turnout does it?

        What this clearly tells me is Labour are in big trouble in Auckland.

        Auckland based Labour MP’s not pushing the issue to have a deputy leader from there also tells me there is a bit of sitting on hands going down. Regrouping after September is what is going on. You know it, I know it, as does anyone with 70% of a brain.

        • red-blooded 1.1.3.1

          Meanwhile, those of us with our brains intact know that turnout is always low in by-elections, especially this close to an election and when the outcome is going to have no impact on the makeup of the parliament and isn’t going to bring anyone new in. Plus, of course, the outcome of this particular by-election was never really in doubt.

          A pretty thin argument, Skinny!

          • Groundhog 1.1.3.1.1

            My understanding is that this was the lowest voter turnout ever in a byelection. I live in Mt Albert, and I can tell you the winner was apathy.

            • lprent 1.1.3.1.1.1

              My understanding is that this was the lowest voter turnout ever in a byelection.

              You understand wrong. Perhaps reading the electionresults archive pages would help. It would certainly beat whatever silly source you used for that statement.

              • weka

                Do they list turnout? I started to do the calculations based on the previous general election, and this by-election does look like one of the lower ones at 35%.

                • Poission

                  Its only 23% of the potential (estimated voter eligibility) the unregistered voters numbers exceeding Genter by a factor of 4,

                • Groundhog

                  It’s actually just under 30%. LPrent wouldn’t know his arse from his elbow.

              • NZ Herald:

                Preliminary turnout was very low – at 29.9 per cent of the 45,200 enrolled voters in Mt Albert.

                That compared to Mt Roskill where turnout was 38.5 per cent and 65 per cent for the Northland byelection last year.

                Turnout plummeted to 32.8 per cent for Te Tai Hauauru in 2004, when Tariana Turia resigned from Labour to contest the seat for the Maori Party. Neither Labour nor National fielded a candidate.

                http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11807645

                The final turnout will presumably depend on special votes yet to be counted.

                There were about 600 special votes in the Mt Roskill by-election.

                • red-blooded

                  But it’s not at all surprising that turnout was low this close to the actual election, when there was no National candidate and no real fight between the two main candidates, when the media coverage was so limited and there was no chance of upsetting the balance of power in the Beehive, and both main candidates were already MPs.

              • Groundhog

                “Perhaps reading the electionresults archive pages would help.”

                I did. Perhaps citing a lower turnout than 29.9% would make you look like less of a tosser.

            • Muttonbird 1.1.3.1.1.2

              billmurray, you’re back! For how long this time?

          • Skinny 1.1.3.1.2

            Really Red-blooded?

            “Plus, of course, the outcome of this particular by-election was never really in doubt.”

            With 77% (42549) non voters, Ardern got 18% of the total eligible vote. Genter 3% (1489) and Simmons 1% (600).
            Ardern did get 77% of those that did. It did show the huge door knocking, street meetings strategy didn’t attract the interest to vote.

            National will be absolutely kicking themselves that they didn’t field a candidate. They could have achieved a boilover win if they turned up with a suitable candidate. That is the real story of this by-election. Of course the media will eventually click on. Maybe Hooton will hola this tomorrow on RNZ?

            • red-blooded 1.1.3.1.2.1

              See my previous comment re low turnout. And National would only have increased turnout (with more Labour voters feeling there might be a threat and getting out to vote). They were never going to win this one and they knew it. They didn’t want to be humiliated at the start of election year so they stayed away.

      • Anthony Rimell 1.1.4

        “THIS”

    • HDCAFriendlyTroll 1.2

      Except Jacinda is a major populist threat to Andrew Little. She’s got an electoral seat which more than what Angry Andy has. If she wants to she can leverage her seat against him and force him out.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.1

        If only she were a conniving corrupt Tory, eh.

      • DoublePlusGood 1.2.2

        This is MMP, where list seats and electorate seats are both one seat in the house alike. Either method of getting into parliament is perfectly valid – one represents strong localised support, and the other represents strong support from the membership of a party to get into that high list position and sufficiently strong national support to the list member into parliament.
        Standing in a safe seat and getting a free pass into parliament doesn’t really mean too much in my opinion, and Little has stood previously in a now fairly right wing seat, so it’s no surprise he didn’t win that.

      • …the only leverage you get from an electorate seat is either in a small party that needs the electorate seat to stay in Parliament, or in a party that’s on track to win more electorates than list seats when your superiors are list MPs. Neither is currently the case for Labour, so Jacinda has no leverage.

        Besides, she’s being mentored to be a future deputy already, so she doesn’t need leverage against Little, she just needs to wait her turn.

    • Jeepers Jenny Kirk you seem delibrate in your misunderstanding of a lot of things. Hope you get enlightened soon.

      • Jenny Kirk 1.3.1

        In what way, marty mars ?

        • marty mars 1.3.1.1

          You seem very entitled.

          Rip into the Māori Party with quite rough stuff e.g. saying that have spit in their people.

          Rip into the standard like its a person and say it is destabilising labour

          Lucky you like nice clean water eh

          • marty mars 1.3.1.1.1

            Anyway jenny kirk believe it or not – I like reading your comments even though some of them are rude imo. I’d rather have you here than not here which is why I commented to you. Good luck and Kia kaha.

            • Jenny Kirk 1.3.1.1.1.1

              I wouldn’t call them rude, marty mars. I’d call them forthright. Or maybe I just call a spade, a spade – instead of covering it up with smart words.

              And yes I’m Labour, and I do get tired of people going on about Labour’s perceived ills – when there is so much else happening in other political parties to the right which is so damaging to ordinary people – and I include the Maori Party in that description too.

              But thank you for your good wishes.

    • “What I’m more intrigued with – is why did Julie Anne Genter do so poorly ? I was expecting her to get more votes than she did (1489).”

      That’s just under half what Jeanette Elley got in the 2014 general election (3152).

      Ardern got just under half (at 10,000) what David Shearer got in 2014 (20,970).

      Do you think Ardern did poorly?

      • Groundhog 1.4.1

        Hi Pete

        I live in Mt Albert and JAG actually called at my house. We had a very civilised conversation, and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised at how well informed she was about a range of issues. I was also phoned at night by a delightful older gent from the Greens on Thursday before the by-election, and he all but conceded they knew JAG was not doing well. They anticipated a very low turnout, and that most Green part voters would vote for Ardern because they wanted a definitive result for the left.

        • Pete George 1.4.1.1

          I’m not surprised she was well informed across issues, she usually comes across as well informed and speaks directly and plainly (Ardern tends to waffle more).

          And you confirm that Greens weren’t trying to get votes for JAG.

          I’m not sure that it produced ‘a definitive result for the left’. Greens would have done better for themselves by getting a respectable vote. Why would Green supporters who weren’t fussed about Labour bother voting if Greens didn’t want their vote?

          We’ll never know whether the Labour and Green (and National) strategies in Mt Albert were effective or not because there will be other important factors in the general election.

          I don’t think the result tells us much. Andrew Little has claimed it proves Labour’s ability to ‘get out the vote’ but it didn’t, Ardern got half the votes David Shearer got in 2014.

    • BM 1.5

      What I’m more intrigued with – is why did Julie Anne Genter do so poorly ? I was expecting her to get more votes than she did (1489).

      Probably because no one outside of the left wing political bubble actually knows who she is.

      She needs to start doing woman’s weekly articles, that seems to be the key to success for any up and coming female politician, sadly.

      • locus 1.5.1

        BM – I think you’ve entirely missed the point.

        Labour and the Greens campaigned together in Mt. Albert.

        Many who voted for Jacinda are highly likely to support the Greens in the party vote at the general election, and were probably delighted that Julie Anne was there in their electorate as a contender as well as an ally.

    • Keith 1.6

      Damn right Jenny, very safe pair of hands in King.

  2. One Anonymous Bloke 2

    Having popular and talented MPs is such a headache!

    It must be nice for Bill English to have no headaches at all.

  3. “I’m absolutely clear about my ­ambition to be Minister of Children.” That, she says, is where she can make a difference.

    And what about leader of the Labour party? No, she says.

    http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11701114

    She keeps saying that. A deputy leader has to stand in for the leader, so why would she want to be deputy?

    She doesn’t want to be Prime Minister. No, really, she doesn’t want to be Prime Minister.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=11789352

    Deputies have to stand in for Prime Ministers. Some of them are waiting for their turn at the top job.

    Ardern will be busy setting herself up in a safe electorate. Her career as a celebrity MP looks assured for as long as she wants it.

    She doesn’t appear to have the driving ambition to be a leader. Minister of Children and cover of Woman’s Weekly seems to be a self imposed limit, at this stage.

    • AB 3.1

      Or perhaps she just quite sensibly realises she needs more experience and is not ready yet?
      Which if true, is the complete opposite of being a ‘celebrity MP’ as Petey so snidely suggests. The irony here being that it’s right-wing media hacks Trevett and Watkins that are fuelling the celebrity reputation that right-wing blogger Pete George then uses to attack Ardern herself.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1

        A petty misogynist envies success.

      • Pete George 3.1.2

        Bryce Edwards was fairly forceful on it last week too.

        The natural time for a deputy leadership change in Labour would be next week, in the wake of Ardern’s victory. It can be presented as an appropriate revamp, recognising Ardern’s victory, and it can be sold as Labour’s final re-freshing of its campaign line-up before the election.

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11807122

        But I agree with you AB, I don’t think she is ready to make another move for leadership yet (she stood with Grant Robertson as his proposed deputy when he went for the Labour leadership).

        Despite her denials of leadership ambitions I think she has longer term plans. She has changed her mind before.

        But actually being an MP? “No!” On a school trip to Parliament, she left her classmates drinking orange juice in John Luxton’s office to ask his private secretary what she should study to become a private secretary.

        “MPs? There were only 120 of those. No way was I going to become one of those.”

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=11789352

        Maybe she is being pragmatic and doesn’t think she can oust Annette King out of the deputy position.

        Or perhaps she is just being patient. She appears to be cultivating her profile with a long term plan in mind.

        For now I think she will be happy to settle into a safe electorate and set up a launch for bigger ambitions later.

        • Groundhog 3.1.2.1

          In other words…she lied?

          • Pete George 3.1.2.1.1

            Politicians change their minds about what they want to do often. Bill English changed his mind (or at least his public ambitions) about being Prime Minister when circumstances changed (Key stepped down).

            I’d be very skeptical of any politician saying ‘never’. Ardern has repeated she has no interest in being Labour leader or Prime Minister, but she has already put herself forward for deputy.

            It looks like Ardern is being groomed and is preparing herself for a career that will include leadership if the circumstances are right. Isn’t her idol and inspiration Helen Clark? She has worked herself into Clark’s old electorate now.

            There is a common expectation that politicians won’t be open about leadership aspirations. It may be dishonest but it’s pragmatic, if they say they want to replace their leader their careers are likely to encounter difficulties.

      • Pete George 3.1.3

        “Which if true, is the complete opposite of being a ‘celebrity MP’ as Petey so snidely suggests.”

        She probably does more magazine type profiles than just about every other MP combined. I presume that’s a deliberate strategy. It’s the sort of thing ‘celebrities’ do isn’t it? It’s an unusual approach for an MP beyond the occasional one-off attempt.

        • AB 3.1.3.1

          You are setting a very high bar if you expect politicians not to take opportunities to raise their profile.
          Perhaps if you were young, female, moderately good-looking, articulate and in a job that put you in the public eye you might get similar opportunities? (which of course you would turn down because of the purity of your principles.)
          Don’t blame Ardern for the shallowness of the 21st century media.

          • red-blooded 3.1.3.1.1

            Plus I think we can assume that the Gen Sec and Leader give an OK to engagements like this that raise the Party’s profile and put its representative in front of a group of potential voters in something other than a traditional political forum.

          • simbit 3.1.3.1.2

            ‘moderately good looking’ ?!

            Leave it out…

        • McFlock 3.1.3.2

          I take it you’re excluding john key from that list.

          Ardern has never done a pool pic AFAIK, unlike him.

  4. Peter 4

    Annette I am sure does an excellent job as deputy. Labour needs someone who evokes an emotional response. For whatever reason Ardern does that, especially with younger voters. Arguably she is the only current local politician that does. Promote her and watch the Labour polls climb.

  5. saveNZ 5

    I’m surprised the MSM did not suggest Arden should roll Little for leader!

    They are showing restraint to just go for deputy with Arden:)

    Who cares what MSM think? They have always been toxic for Labour and helping the Natz at every turn.

    • garibaldi 5.1

      The MSM are probably going to predict Ardern will head Little in the preferred PM poll, and that could well come to pass.

      • saveNZ 5.1.1

        Little is a quiet achiever and will lead Labour to victory. The polls lie. Look at Key most preferred PM and now at 2%. You have to wonder how accurate these polls are or if someone has found a way to manipulate them!

  6. Sanctuary 6

    I always questioned the wisdom of the Green’s running a candidate – and I the see the Herald has wasted little time before starting the mischief making in the wake of the Green’s getting crushed like a composting toilet being hit by a M1 tank –

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11807091

    The Herald editorial writer (stylistically I would say Roughan?) clearly hopes that they can spread a message that the Greens are weak, a vote for them is a vote for Labour so you might as well vote for the real thing, and that if we must have a Labour government, let it be hobbled by Winston.

    I guess it does show that whoever wrote the editorial thinks National is in trouble, and they are going to do their level best to ensure the Greens are attacked from every direction.

  7. Waz 7

    Annette King is probably acutely aware that the margin between defeat and victory will be as narrow as it was at the last election, and the by-election result will put her under intense pressure to step aside for Ardern. From the right of the party as well. Bryce Edwards is pretty much right I think.

    King will most likely resign as of next election. She didn’t want to serve this time.

  8. red-blooded 8

    In the national election there’ll be more of a distinction between the Greens and Labour and more sense in voting Green to have an influence on any Labour-Green government. In the by-election the Greens were never going to win and the percentage they got wasn’t going to have any effect on the outcome, so there was much less incentive for Green supporters to get out and vote.

    It’s great to see Labour functioning so well and congrats to Ardern. The focus has to be for both parties to increase their votes, maintaining their own identities so that they don’t cannabilise each other. People on this site who constantly snipe at Labour for not being far enough to the left for their tastes should keep in mind that taking votes from the Greens isn’t the aim. Established Labour voters know that but Labour also needs to convince people who haven’t voted to the left recently.

    • Karen 8.1

      I agree Red-blooded. Green candidates aren’t going to win electorate seats any time soon and most Green Party voters understand this. In a general election they will split their votes – the party vote is what is important to the make up of parliament.

      It was good to have Genter run because it raised her profile in the electorate so it will help her get more party votes for the Greens in the general election.

      As to the deputy position I am astonished that nobody has pointed out that should Labour and the Greens win the election Metiria Turei will become the deputy PM. Why put Ardern into a position she will soon have to vacate?

    • swordfish 8.2

      “In the by-election the Greens were never going to win and the percentage they got wasn’t going to have any effect on the outcome, so there was much less incentive for Green supporters to get out and vote.”

      Really ? … The core political complexion of the seat (as indicated by the 2014 Party Vote) suggests otherwise.

      2014 Party Vote

      Labour … 10823 … (29.5%)
      Green …… 8005 …. (21.8%)

      Only a slightly above average seat for Labour.

      One of the Greens’ strongest seats.

      Certainly true that a large majority of Greens have consistently cast their Candidate Vote for Labour over recent General Elections (and that a reasonable minority of them are, in fact, former Lab Party Voters).

      But, arguably, this By-Election offered all those Greens a unique opportunity …… no Nat candidate to scare them into strategic voting, Genter in the highly unusual position of being considered one of the two frontrunners, a media narrative suggesting a win-win scenario for the Left regardless of outcome – and all in a Green heartland electorate.

      Sure, the odds were always against them pulling off an historic win…… but they really should have done better.

      • Jenny Kirk 8.2.1

        Yes, that’s what I thought as well, Swordfish. I continue to be puzzled why Julie Anne didn’t get more votes.
        Someone has suggested that maybe its because she’s an expert on public transport and that’s not necessarily a Green “thing” – not an environmental thing (although I would have thought it could be seen as such). And therefore Greens didn’t vote for her because it wasn’t about the environment.

        • Karen 8.2.1.1

          Transport is definitely an environmental issue!! Think climate change.

          Julie Anne Genter is very well liked in the Green Party but she stood for Epsom last election so isn’t known as well in the Mt Albert electorate. Also see my reply to Swordfish.

        • Graeme 8.2.1.2

          Maybe… it’s that your average Green voter (if I can make that assertion) is much more accustomed to voting tactically, or laterally, and voted voted to give the strongest result for a future left leaning government. The number that mattered here was Jacinda’s majority, rather than the vote for “their” candidate.

          Regarding turnout, how much of a factor would the weather have been in this, looks like it was a pretty good Saturday up there after how many crappy ones.

        • newsense 8.2.1.3

          Not confusing at all. Julie Ann Genter is fantastic. But her fans are also Jacinda’s fans, and they’ve mostly been Jacinda’s fans for longer.

          The importance of having a strong Labour member for Mt Albert is important if the left coalition is going to win. You might quibble, but to lose such a stronghold or be close run on it would be a sign of problems for Labour.

          Julie Ann might well have worried another Labour candidate, but not Jacinda. Jacinda has been a long standing advocate for Auckland issues, including public transport.

      • Karen 8.2.2

        I was talking about the candidate vote and Genter had no chance of winning that.

        I have friends in the electorate who party vote Green in general elections and they ALL voted for Jacinda. Why? Because they like Jacinda a lot and they were politically savvy enough to know that if she lost the media would be all about Labour being hopeless. It was not ‘no risk’ at all. The Greens need Labour to do well as well as getting more party votes themselves.

        • weka 8.2.2.1

          Yep.

          And an unusual election making comparisons with other ones difficult. How much of an influence was the lack of National, the low turnout, the MoU etc.

          • weka 8.2.2.1.1

            Here’s my numbers. Hard to know what to make of the numbers, other than that Ardern did very well.

            Re turnout,

            Mt Albert yesterday looks about 35% of the 2014 GE vote for that electorate.

            Mt Roskill by-election looks about 50% of the 2014 GE vote.

            Northland was around 82% of the previous GE vote.

            The Mt Albert by-election in 2009 had an 82% turnout of the Mt Albert vote in the 2008 general election. That was Helen Clark leaving.

            Yesterday, Genter just got 11.5% of the vote. That’s electorate vote and I don’t think it can necessarily be compared to the party vote. And presumably a lot of it is made up of the serious left wing vote if we look at the low turnout (so the people that voted are politically engaged) and guess that National voters didn’t bother.

            It’s hard to compare to previous Mt Albert elections, because in those National stood. In the 2009 Mt Albert by-election (Clark leaving), Russell Norman got 11% of the total vote, but it’s likely he is picking up some RW and centrist votes there.

            I’m sure Genter is disappointed but from the Greens’ perspective I’m guessing it’s all about the party vote for Sept.

            btw TOP got 4.5% of the same presumably serious left wing vote and committed political voter across the board.

            I think comparisons are hard because there are too many variables differing from the general election or even other by-elections.

            • Karen 8.2.2.1.1.1

              Why do you think TOP are left wing? They are not left wing at all!

              One of the reason Morgan created the party was because he was annoyed that the Greens didn’t want to go into a coalition with National. He was forever going on at them about that (sorry don’t have time to provide links as about to go to a meeting). Also Morgan has alienated nearly everyone who has tried to discuss policies with him by ranting insults at them.

              There are plenty of left wing people who vote Labour and also there are centre right people who vote Green. You can care about the environment without being left wing. Plenty of evidence for that.

              • weka

                I don’t think TOP are left wing, I think they are centre right with some social conscience. My comment was more about the likelihood of who turned out to vote, but actually the TOP voters might have been righties who take voting seriously and didn’t have a NACT candidate to vote for. However I do see lefties admiring TOP and Morgan, which is a worry on a number of fronts. He has good ideas but as you say he’s crap at listening to people. His ideas need development in order to be progressive.

        • Jenny Kirk 8.2.2.2

          Those suggestions from Graeme and Karen make a lot of sense – helps explain JA’s lower than expected vote.

      • Skinny 8.2.3

        JAG was there to make noise and call the Government out, she was very effective as the Greens Transport spokesperson in doing so. Numerous media items throughout the short by-election campaign featured Genter being criticial of National doing a terrible job on Auckland transport issues.

        With TOP fielding a candidate and taking the Right candidate postition the Left-Green party supporters I know in Mt-Albert chose to ‘play it safe’ and vote for their coalition partners candidate. Labour winning strongly was of utmost importance. Well played JAG and smart Green supporters.

  9. Keith 9

    Thing is both Watkins and Trevett are both John Key groupies, Tracey almost breathless being taken for a spin on Keys airforce 757 and loyal to the bone ever since. Therefore I would take their ill informed advice with a grain of salt.

    Funny though that they can always find that dark lining in Labours silver cloud.

    • Bearded Git 9.1

      Bryce Edwards seems to be a Blinglish groupie too. It’s simple really-read what they say (Edwards/Trevett/Watkins) and do the opposite.

      Nice win for Labour. Jacinda is giving the party great profile especially in Auckland. I guess Jacinda will be number 3 in the hierarchy now, if she already isn’t. Genter was on a hiding to nothing against her and did ok.

      Shame on the Nats for not standing (for anything).

  10. Talking of deputies, where is paula these days?

  11. mosa 12

    All this garbage about Jacinda for deputy is typical of the right wing press who should listen a bit more instead of talking crap.
    Jacinda ruled out categorically ever standing for any leadership role in the future after the last campaign for the Labour leadership.

  12. Muttonbird 13

    And another one. In this article, embedded National Party journalist, Stacey Kirk, attempts to invent contest and instability within the Labour Party from first word to last.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/89812920/jacinda-ardern-ambitious-simply-to-be-good-at-her-job

    • rob 13.1

      Call me naive but I did wonder about this Stacey Kirk being a nat mouthpiece after about 4 stories on stuff about jacinda,and as comments closed on one she started another so I googled her and on her Twitter she states she will do everything she can to keep national in power! how can a media outlet allow such bais?
      Also her article about foster bell leaving has no comments but all about Labour etc comments central! Just shocking in my book and are the public aware her organization must condone bais and the want to merge and make it bigger.

  13. Cynical jester 14

    As a millennial who has voted for labour but deeply thinking he’ll vote green this year, Jacinda represents the future and its a bright one. /Little = the past. I don’t think its too late to replace little with gracinda but the party wont because of the homophobic unions getting a say. Andrew has had three years and has done bugger all he’s weaker than cunliffe also i see no reason to show loyalty to king when that neoliberal was an ABC. I think it is imperative labour have a ypung Auckland voice in leadership, one who the country admires much more than anyone else in the party. She’ll bring that trudeau magic the needs. If by some miracle we happen to win the election this year she needs to come to the cabinet if we lose which in my mind is a definite due to labours boring dull old fogey middle of the road leadership she needs to be encouraged to run. Also the unions and caucus should get much less say in the leadership races, it should be a one vote per member not the disgrace of the caucus getting a 40% say with unions getting 20%. One vote per member. .. period.

  14. James 15

    Imo National didn’t run a candidate because they are making sure they win in 2020.

    Following a Labour loss in 2017, they know that Little will be rolled and they want a Robinson/Arden tix, knowing that this will ensure them a win in 2020. The Nat’s know that Ardern cannot make a pitch for deputy having only ever been a privileged list MP brought over from the UK by Clarke, and having never won a seat (both in Central Ak and Waikato). AKA, the Nat’s needed to hand her Mt Albert to ensure that she will have a legitimate crack with Robinson following Little’s departure.

    Yes Jacinda is popular, but she is only popular with people who ALREADY vote Green/Labour, she has no wider appeal.

    Smart play by the Nat’s IMO.

    • Michael 15.1

      I think you credit the Nats with far too much tactical nous, although I also think the scenario you outline (Nat wins in 2017 and 2020) is likely but for different reasons than the ones you give. The reason why I think the Nats will remain government is because Labour gives swinging voters no reason to change their Party Votes. Why bother, when all you’re going to get is National-lite anyway? The only way for Labour to attain office, AFAICS, is for it to present itself as different from National and able to govern, competently but progressively, with policies designed to redress today’s challenges (or, even better, tomorrow’s), rather than yesterday’s, which is what the Nats do. Sadly, I see no evidence that Labour is remotely interested in such an agenda, which is why I think I’ll probably join the biggest bloc of voters – the non voters.

    • tangled_up 15.2

      “Yes Jacinda is popular, but she is only popular with people who ALREADY vote Green/Labour, she has no wider appeal”.

      [citation needed]

      • Peter 15.2.1

        Anecdotal support for Ardern

        An interesting unsolicited discussion tonight with some non-political 30 somethings. They mentioned Ardern’s large Facebook following and the need for new faces to represent their generation. If it holds true that Ardern’s brand awareness goes beyond G/L she might just have the x-factor so desperately needed by those wanting to be the new government. It’s time for a change – to Ardern!

  15. michelle 16

    the right wing media need to stop shit stirring and do there job properly. Jacinda will have her time but it ain’t right now. I suggest Andrew gives her a promotion but not deputy yet she aint ready Annette is doing a good job and the left need an experience deputy to help put the boot into the Tories who are starting to sink their waka it has wholes in it like our welfare safety net and no amount of patching up is gonna stop it from slowly sinking

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