Lianne Dalziel may be on the opposite side of the political spectrum from me, and a bit fond of the bottle but she has a reputation in Christchurch for being able to work across partisan lines.
It is obvious that Christchurch is a mess, the council is dysfunctional and the Bob and Tony team are widely loathed by just about everyone. Christchurch needs a uniter, not a divider, and the word is that National would far rather deal with Lianne and the competent councillors she is bringing with her than Bob Parker.
Labour MP Lianne Dalziel is set to enter the Christchurch mayoral race, Fairfax Media understands.
The Christchurch East MP has long been rumoured as the favourite to challenge incumbent Bob Parker for the mayoral chains, following her high-profile role as Labour’s earthquake recovery spokeswoman, and criticism of the current council.
Her declaration is expected later this week.
Dalziel has the backing of her party for a mayoral bid, despite dropping out of the top 20-ranked Labour MPs in a party reshuffle in February.
If she stands and wins, she will likely have to resign her Christchurch East seat, triggering a by-election.
Which will put some pressure on Ross Robertson to resign as well. At least Lianne has already stated that if she won she wouldn’t be a double dipper.
Dalziel has kept Christchurch guessing about a mayoralty bid for months.
In March she was “99 per cent” sure she would not stand, but a month later it was revealed she had attempted to recruit Student Volunteer Army founder Sam Johnson as a potential running mate.
Last month she was still coy on a bid, but talked about the importance of an alternative council leadership that cut across political party lines.