This weekend is the National Party CNI Regional Conference in Taupo. In terms of numbers CNI is 100% blue, with no red seats in the region. Other numbers worth bearing in mind are the outstanding electoral success of three members of the 2008 intake.
Jonathan Young increased his majority in New Plymouth, giving Andrew Little’s hopes of becoming Labour leader a big dent. Provincial MPs often get overlooked, but the word from New Plymouth is Jonathan is a bloody good campaigner and a well liked and well respected local MP.
In Taupo Louise Upston increased her majority from 6445 to a whopping 14115, cementing her reputation as a vote winner, and turning a formerly red seat blue.
Over in Rotorua Todd McClay was one of only three National MPs competing against a Labour List MP to increase his majority, with Tim McIndoe in Hamilton West doing slightly better than Todd in increasing his majority against a Labour List MP. Unlike Boris, Bluey had the huge good fortune of benefiting from the Moroney Effect.
So with no electorates in play the questions for the CNI delegates are more about how members get their voice heard in the party hierarchy. Are there enough remits and is the policy process working well enough that a good party member can have their ideas adopted as government policy? What plans do the party have to get more people between 30-40 involved, not just as members but actually contributing to the party? Should party members directly elect the president to get them more involved in the party rather than having the board appoint the president?
And finally, in what should not be seen as a slight on my long time friend in caucus, Scott Simpson, what is the party doing to ensure that good local people with good local connections win selection in seats in the CNI.