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More people considering…

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, December 4th, 2009 - 36 comments
Categories: labour - Tags:

According to Vernon Small:

Labour leader Phil Goff will be asked to explain his controversial “nationhood” speech at next week’s party caucus meeting. Discontent, especially on the Left of the party, has centred around Mr Goff’s comments on the foreshore and seabed policy. Insiders say the speech was discussed during a “robust” national council meeting of the party last weekend. The speech endorsed the current law but failed to reiterate the party’s backing for a change that would accept the rights of iwi to seek customary title.

Mr Goff was criticised as “playing the race card” by Maori Party MPs, which he has denied. Members of Labour’s Maori caucus were absent when the speech was discussed in advance, and yesterday questioned whether they were given enough time to comment before it was delivered at a Palmerston North Grey Power meeting.

I think it is good that MPs (and the party) have the opportunity to discuss and debate issues  – if done with care and respect. It’s also the best way to try and work out whether the aims of the speech were met or not – and whether it has got the sort of attention the leadership were after. Most importantly, it will allow some consideration of where to go from here.

36 comments on “More people considering… ”

  1. Doug 1

    Most importantly, it will allow some consideration of where to go from here.
    Phil @5% will find it hard to go any lower.

    • gobsmacked 1.1

      Doug, why do you always run away as soon as you’re challenged? Please return to previous threads and reply. It’s only polite.

      Many thanks.

  2. gobsmacked 2

    I’m quite happy to see this in the Dom-Post. It’s not surprising that there has been “robust” discussion. Good.

    Goff’s Napier speech yesterday was much better, IMHO. More please.

  3. Tim Ellis 3

    It looks like Mr Horomia and Mr Jones are going to have Mr Goff for lunch.

  4. RedLogix 4

    Poor tattered old ‘race card’; time to discard it and start playing the full deck. The future nature and structure of NZ is something we all have a stake in, something we all have an opinion about.

    Goff is right about this, we’ve had enough guilty white cringe, and it sure doesn’t cut mustard with more recent immigrant groups. Moreover Maori have their own articulate voice, their own political structures and their own tribal resources; they scarcely need yet more paternalistic, liberal-handwring special treatment.

    If Labour simply got on with addressing the pervasive class inequalities holding down the 90% of New Zealanders, who collectively own less than the top 2%… there would be plenty of votes in 2011 regardless of skin colour.

    • gitmo 4.1

      “Goff is right about this, we’ve had enough guilty white cringe, and it sure doesn’t cut mustard with more recent immigrant groups.”

      How does this fit with your guilty white cringe in relation to Phillip Field etc ?

      • RedLogix 4.1.1

        You’re fitting me up into a false dichotomy. I can happily reject ‘guilty white cringe’ and ‘racist underbelly’.

        They both exist, they both lead us down dead ends.

  5. Pat 5

    I am convinced that Goff has zero chance in 2011 and therefore Labour should bite the bullet and ditch him now. He is a nice guy and had has served NZ well as a minister, but he is clearly incapable of connecting with the public.

    Forget party heirachy and egos. Labour should work out who best repesents the new face of Labour, and pick him/her as leader now. I reckon it should be Jacinda Ardern. Maybe Chauvel as deputy.

    Give her a 5 year mandate as leader. Let her grow in the role. Even if she loses in 2011 she would do much better against Key than Goff, and would be much more formidable in 2014.

    Labour should stop putting off the pain of leadership ructions. Who cares if Goff, King, Cunliffe and Mallard get their noses out of joint?

    • GFraser 5.1

      Pat, you are the eternal optimist.
      Two years is a very long time in politics.
      Cast your mind back to the Election of 1993 when Labour where in a mess yet still managed to push National extremely closely on polling night.
      I’m sure PM Bolgers words regarding polls have not been forgotten, have they?

      • Pat 5.1.1

        Am I the eternal optimist by suggesting Goff is going to get his arse kicked in 2011? Well then, guilty as charged.

        I see a few on this thread think Goff is the answer. Presumably you are all part of the 5% who want him as PM. As endangered species you should all be kept in a secure enclosure.


        • lprent

          pat – you are simply a fool, and your opinion is valueless. You’re looking at poll figures (especially leadership poll figures) and think that they have much meaning at this point.

          I remember when Helen took over after the 1993 election. She had the numbers in caucus, but her poll numbers were in the toilet all the way through to the 1996 election. At that election national and labour wound up pretty much level-pegging electorally. Only Winston deciding to jump to national allowed them to govern.

          Helen still had personal dismal polling figures pretty much all of the way to the 1999 election. About the only thing you could say was that they were no worse than Shipleys.

          It was only after the election that her poll figures came up as a result of the work that she did. John Key came into the election with high leadership poll figures. His performance is lacklustre. The polls will go down for him. But that doesn’t matter that much either. The government will live and die on how capable they are. Pretty bad at present and getting worse.

          Basically you are a political illiterate. Shows in virtually all of your comments because it is apparent that you’ve never bothered to understand virtually anything you talk about. This is just another example.

  6. vto 6

    Dont go for Cunliffe – he comes across way too smarmy, arrogant and superior. (is he?).

    Don’t go for Mallard – everyone will laugh.

    Maybe King.

    Adern has the appearance of course, which is an unfortunate/fortunate reality today. Enough to straight away grab some small portion of votes just off that. Dunno how she would go as actual leader tho – probably way too young and inexperienced.

    • Pat 6.1

      “probably way too young and inexperienced”

      Not a good enough reason not to pick someone, in my opinion.

      • Goff’ got two years yet and he is still settling in as leader. The gloss is starting to fall of the Government as people relise they have no plan and Key is Mr Flip flop looking for autographs.

        Cunliffe was a very capable minister managing all his portfolios well.
        I cant wait to see Cunliffe go up against English next election.Harvard grad up against do as I say but not as I do Double Dipton.

    • I would also back Cunliffe. He is a very smart operator but also has the x factor. He is one of the best speakers there has been for a while, up there with Cullen and not too far behind Lange.

      He would make Key look like a blundering idiot.

  7. Nick C 7

    I find it funny how you’re so transparently trying to smooth this over. If any sort of story came up here about division within National you would be running post after post about leadership coups, not praising ‘the oppourtunity to discuss and debate issues’.

    Labour has no show in 2011.

    • lprent 7.1

      Huh? We know how this is going to go. Pretty much nowhere apart from the usual discussions that will drag on over into next year about positioning.

      It will only be those out on the right who are wetting their nappies over this. Personally, the thought of being in the same room as left politicians arguing this point is appalling. Even thinking about it is just annoying.

      I prefer to think of the pain I and others in the party would inflict on anyone stupid enough to stop working together despite differing opinions. Saw that in the 80’s and 90’s, and I’d prefer to leave it to the other parties that we dumped them in – like Act.

  8. torydog 8

    if labour are stupid enought to roll Phil before the next election it will only look desperate and will hurt labour.

    Phil deserves a chance to fight an election as leader.

    There nothing more pathetic then a party that changes leaders willy nilly….ie Aussies Liberal party!!!!

    • Doug 8.1

      A special telephone Morgan Poll, conducted over the last two nights (December 2/3, 2009) shows the L-NP making gains after Tony Abbott’s election as the new Liberal Leader on Tuesday. Primary support for the L-NP (43%) is ahead of the ALP (41%) for the first time since the 2007 Federal Election.

  9. Kevin Welsh 9

    If anyone thinks Key is a shoe-in for the next election they are dreaming.

    My boss thinks the sun shines out of Keys arse… well he did until the last few weeks.

    After Hone, the Copenhagen Flip Flop, and now Brash being the final straw, the best he can say about Key is “he is a nice guy, but under National we are now fucked”, quite a turnaround compared to earlier this year.

    If die hard Key supporters like my boss are now having second thoughts, then as far as I am concerned, Nact has problems.

    Phil Goff on the other hand, has been slow out of the blocks and has taken a lot of time to get any traction with the electorate or the media, but the last few weeks has seen quite a turnaround. Her is a personable guy, probably a little too smiley when on TV, but he certainly comes across as a better version of “the man in the street” than Key does, to me.

    At least I can understand what language Goff is speaking.

  10. Herodotus 10

    Unfortunatley the perception with Phil is he lacks something jen sah qui. It is sad but ask people S59 = labour, tax cuts = nat. Even if Lab did (reluctantly) also give a similar cut and Nat did support S59.
    The only thing that would really shake IMO from Nat support would be body bags from Afgan, and NZ being the only scape goat with an emmission scheme (That in its current state will NOT work) being realised by others. If you cannot fault Nat in a few 30 sec sound bites there will be tigers and other celeb headlines to hide hehind. If john is smart there will be a cabinet shuffle late next year and the likes of nick, Paula etc will be placed in minor ministerial roles and replaced by the few ministers that will have proven themselves. Thus resulting in disassociating the bad decisions with those faces that are linked with them.
    Phil also needs his senior MP’s to also start to front up and perform!

  11. The Voice of Reason 11

    Good points, Kevin.

    I’m guessing that the reason that Goff took so long to get traction in the media, and consequently with the public, is that it’s only in recent weeks that the media have removed their tongues from Key’s fundamental orifice. Now that they realise that sunshine doesn’t eminate from said orifice, they are starting to treat Goff as a credible alternative.

    The next few polls should indicate a drop in support for Mr Floppy and Nat/ACT/Brown Tories and a small, but significant rise for Goff and Labour. The honeymoon is over, next step; the divorce.

  12. The Voice of Reason 12

    Tim: Gobsmacked called you on your ‘lunch’ comment at 10.33. At 10.37 you asked why it was racist and at 2.13 you feign surprise at the answer.

    How come it took you 2 and a half hours and a post from IB before you saw the possibilility that the idea of two brown men eating a white man might have racial undertones? I got it before I’d even finished reading the sentence. Are you naive or just lacking imagination?

    But to be charitable, maybe you weren’t intentionally racist. Maybe you just meant that two large men intended eating a skinny one. No possible offence there, eh?

    • Tim Ellis 12.1

      TVOR I was referring to the dispute in the Labour Party around Mr Goff’s foreshore and seabed speech which has clearly divided caucus members, which is the subject of this post. I frequently use the expression “eating somebody for lunch”. It doesn’t mean cannibalism and I was perplexed that people would see it as racist. I didn’t consider the cannibalism aspect as it simply didn’t occur to me, but I apologise if anybody took offence to what was not intended.

      I suppose “making mincemeat” of somebody also has a cannibalistic connotation but it’s common usage. If I had said: “Mr Jones and Mr Horomia will have Mr Goff in their sights”, is that racist too on the basis of guns being used during the Maori wars?

      I didn’t intend any racist meaning and I was genuinely flabbergasted that somebody might interpret it that way but if I offended anybody by using a loose expression then I apologise.

    • Tim Ellis 12.2

      As for why it took me two and a half hours TVOR, I haven’t been online a whole lot, and I didn’t pick up the meaning until IB pointed it out.

  13. The Voice of Reason 13

    Good on you for offering an apology straight away, Tim.

    It took Hone weeks before he apologised for his far more racist rant. And even then he couldn’t get it right. Still waiting for his apologists on this site to offer their mea culpa’s too. It just puzzled me that cannabilism didn’t occur to you, when it was so blindingly obvious. But it’s a small matter, I suppose.

    I don’t think ‘having someone in their sights’ would be racist, BTW. Both sides used guns.

    • lprent 13.1

      Why? It was Hone being Hone. It will help with his base.

      I hear damn near the same thing every day from all sides. At least the bugger is honest. I’d say more cautious as well – but Hone cautious? yeah right

  14. mike 14

    All this speculation of possible replacements for 5% phil on a pinko blog can only mean one thing….

    Barbie at Kings place – anyone heard from Annette lately?

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