The return of Banks?

Written By: - Date published: 11:47 am, July 14th, 2019 - 28 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, john banks, local government, supercity - Tags:

John Banks may be on the comeback trail.  Or at least the folk at Topham and Guerin and Crosby and Textor may be investigating the possibility of a campaign.

From Bevan Hurley at Stuff:

John Banks has hired a team of heavyweight political strategists as he weighs up a shot at the Auckland mayoralty. 

The former minister has been holding secret focus group sessions to determine whether he has a shot at beating Phil Goff in Auckland’s Supercity elections.

According to one political expert, he will need to convince voters he’s a Renaissance man rather than yesterday’s man.

Banks has been working as a business consultant since bowing out of politics in 2014. But he said he had been shoulder-tapped by figures on the centre-Right of Auckland politics and constituents who were concerned about the future of New Zealand’s biggest city, and the leadership of Phil Goff.

“We’ve had a mayor who’s been in hibernation rather than collaboration with the very people who trusted him with their vote. The mayor has had a go, now it’s time to go.

Among Banks’ team of advisors is Topham Guerin, the Kiwi digital communications specialists that helped propel Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison to an unexpected victory in the general election this year.

And Andrew Laidlaw, a former staffer for global political strategists Crosby Textor, has been leading research about the viability of a Banks candidacy and the state of the Auckland mayoralty race in general.

It seems awfully late to be raising the possibility of a campaign with nominations opening in a week’s time.

And I disagree with the analysis, Banks running would only split the Tamihere vote and inevitably hand the mayoralty to Goff.

But it must not be fun being in the Auckland National Party right now.  Leaving these sorts of decisions to the last minute suggests an extreme amount of panic.

28 comments on “The return of Banks?”

  1. Morrissey 1

    NO-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-O-O!!!!!!

  2. Pat 2

    an extreme amount of what exactly?

    • An extreme amount of concern over their future; the freaking lame-os.

      • Pat 2.1.1

        I see….would suggest he is more likely concerned over relevance as his future must be assured after 18 years in Parliament (during super era)….egos need lots of watering

      • greywarshark 2.1.2

        an extreme amount of … anxiety, popular misconception, ego, desperation, overweening ambition, conjecture?

  3. Visubversa 3

    You need a shedload of $$$ to make that particular souffle rise for the 4th time. I suppose there is always Penny Bright’s 7% of the vote going begging.

  4. greywarshark 4

    How can innocent naive or even those who imagine themselves as cunning, stand against the phalanx of advisors and pokers and pryers and steerers hired by pollies.    Let's make being a polly a bad financial choice and limit the term so that we have to get behind candidates and support them while they are in, so we can get people who are nearer to the everyday issues.   And they have to have done courses in civil society and become generalists not just lawyers and accountants or tech whizzes.

    Dream on you dope.  /sarc answer

  5. Ad 5

    The winner of this terms' Auckland mayoralty will be able to bask in grand events that have taken years to build: 

    – Americas Cup events (for which Auckland Council is a commercial Alliance member  in the construction and event organization)

    – Commercial Bay (for which Auckland Council sold the downtown QE2 Square to Precinct and co-invested in the streetscaping)

    – Britomart rebuild and City Rail Link initial phases (Auckland Council is a 50-50 partner)

    – Quay Street and ferry precinct rebuild (Council funded)

    – Opening of National Convention Centre (legislated and funded by government, but plenty of local assistance in there as well)

    – APEC (which much of the city is being prepared for right now)

    – Multliple cycleways across the isthmus including Skypath and Seapath (with NZTA)

    – Fully rebuilt Wynyard precinct, including removal of most of the old oil tank farm

    – And of course the term starts with the parade for the upcoming win of Rugby World Cup in November 2019

    All of these are multi-term projects, but the winner of this election gets all that political and televisual glory.

    Imagine Banks or Tamihere fronting the showered praise for all of that, when Goff and Brown's efforts secured much of that list (not all).

    • Incognito 5.1

      You forget to add an unlimited supply of free-range eggs from the West. The right-wing candidates will scramble to claim these Council assets to green their image.

  6. Well at least all the dodgy donations will have to be handed over in paper bags and not single use plastic.

    • Jenny - How to Get there? 6.1

      Don't forget to divide your donations into lesser amounts so Banksy doesn't have to declare them. Y'know the paperwork

  7. rod 7

    I wonder if he can recall being Mayor before.surprise

  8. Incognito 8

    Leaving these sorts of decisions to the last minute suggests an extreme amount of cynicism.

    FIFY

    BTW, has it ever been fun being in the Auckland National Party?

  9. Sacha 9

    Yes we recall Johnny's business exploits: https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10688553

    Who would pull the insecure little man's strings as mayor like David Hay did last time?

  10. Peter 10

    Banks considering standing would be no surprise. That some would vote for him would be no surprise.

    The single saddest thing about that is in a moderately intelligent, rational world, John Banks' multi-dramatically flawed character and his lengthy record of shady behaviour would have him laughed out of (as it were) court, but it could happen.

    Sacha hit it on the head with "insecure little man." The public perception was of a forthright, strong, decisive positive fellow. His superiority complex has been one of the most perfect in NZ public life over years. His reward is that he is officially the 'Honourable' and has one of the highest honours to be bestowed in New Zealand.

    If John Banks is the answer to a question about the mayoralty of our biggest city, the world is well and truly stuffed.

  11. Dukeofurl 11

    That was the Nats plan all along , to put up a stalking horse like Tamihere to reduce the share of the voter going to Goff.

    Thats the only way a right leaning candidate  can win, as shown by the 2010 matchup with Banks and Brown.

    Brown was a touch under 50% of the vote, almost exceeding all other candidates combined including Banks at  35%

    last time Goff got 47%.

    The business interests really want to get their hands on Ports of Auckland and Watercare and other assets like car park buildings to try this risky  stategy to take 10-15% off the Goff vote with Tamihere

    • Blazer 11.1

      Yes I see it your way too.

      What an unholy alliance..JT-McCarten and Boag!

      Banks running may actually help Goff -who will Boag vote for!

    • greywarshark 11.2

      I could see that the plutos would have some strategic interests.    It's all manipulating, looking for advantage.    Puts me in mind of the prairie dogs watching the snake, very wary, but brave and bold.    That's how we need to be – prairie dogs.

  12. michelle 12

    He ( banks) should stayed retired he has had many turns at many roles it  is time for our young people to step up fresh blood whereas his (banks) time is up 

  13. KJT 13

    Must be some things Aucklanders own, they haven't stolen yet.

    To fund Banks to have another go.

  14. george.com 14

    banks is like some soggy gross old cabbage your nana boiled and then reboiled for dinner the next night and is threatening to give you for a third night in a row. who the heck would want that.

    Changing subject slightly I think the way the Auckland mayoralty is decided needs an overhaul. Basically electoral reform.

    The decision who becomes mayor should be decided by who scores the most boundaries

  15. Henry Filth 15

    I know that New Zealand's a small country with a limited talent pool, but surely there are limits. . . 

  16. Michael 16

    Love the photo. I can see that wrapped around every lamp post in Auckland if Banksie is mad enough to take a run.

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