Moira Coatsworth

The toxicity of the Greens and lessons from Tasmania for Labour

Labour faces a dilemma.

They can’t win the election without some sort of formal accommodation with the Greens.¬†They also can’t win without Winston Peters.

And thus their dilemma is apparent. The Greens are toxic. David Cunliffe knows it, Shane Jones knows it, Winston Peters knows it.

But the problem is Moira Coatsworth is shrieking at Cunliffe that the attitude tot eh Greens must end, that they are the preferred coalition partner and that Labour needs to be nicer.

Russel Norman is exerting pressure behind the scenes as well.  But the fact remains that the Greens are toxic in any support or coalition deal.

This is a position that Tasmanian’s saw only too well and punished both Labor and the Greens over in their state elections last weekend.

Labor and the Greens have blamed each other for the loss of votes in Saturday‚Äôs Tasmanian state election, while the South Australian Liberals insisted electoral boundaries prevented them from claiming a ‚Äúdeserved‚ÄĚ outright win.

The simultaneous state elections resulted in a decisive Liberal win in Tasmania and a likely hung parliament in South Australia, where the focus is now turning to negotiations with two independents.

The Liberals have raised questions over the South Australian electoral system given the party could miss out on forming government despite securing about 53% of the two-party vote.¬† Read more »

Do people like this have a place in politics?

A high-profile political figure has won the right to keep details of his divorce secret after a judge ruled he was a “vulnerable person”.

His messy divorce case included allegations of espionage, infidelity, dognapping, theft, the involvement of three Queen’s Counsel, and a disputed allegation the man grabbed or touched his wife’s neck, tried to kick in the door of their home and shouted abuse at her.

The couple were involved in a protracted legal battle through the Family Court. The ex-wife has sought the right to speak publicly and to her friends about the break-up, but the husband has fought to keep the dispute secret.

How can anyone be a high profile political figure and at the same time “vulnerable”.

If you enter politics, you get to make judgements about other people.  You get to influence policy.  You get to make decisions over the careers, lives and families.  This person, at the very least, should have no say or influence over many political policy areas.

But how can we make sure someone that kicks in the door and “grabbed or touched” his wife’s neck is kept well away? ¬†Why the code of silence?

It seems to be an upside-down situation to have someone who has alleged involvement in espionage and theft in a high profile position in a political party be protected from public scrutiny and the public’s judgement as to this person’s suitability. ¬† Read more »

Hooton on Jones and Cunliffe

Matthew Hooton thinks Shane Jones could well be the saviour of the Labour party but first he reviews the woeful performance of the current leader of the Labour party, David Cunliffe.

September 27 is overwhelmingly favoured but rumours persist John Key may opt for August or even July for the general election.

The rationale is to allow plenty of time for coalition negotiations, for a new government to be sworn in and for a properly mandated prime minister to represent New Zealand at the G20 and Apec leaders’ meetings in November.

Whenever the election is held, Labour now risks another disaster.

In just the past seven days, David Cunliffe has admitted he made a fool of himself attacking Mr Key’s lifestyle, been caught laundering campaign donations through a secret trust, been embarrassed by his staff emailing his confidential ICT policy to the government and faced questions over his failure to declare another trust until after his predecessor David Shearer was caught with an undisclosed $50,000+ offshore bank account.

This is on top of his misrepresentation of his baby-bonus policy and the questions over his claimed business, academic and community-service background.

Labour is now lower in the polls than when Mr Shearer resigned, Mr Cunliffe’s personal popularity is worse than his ever was, and there is no evidence the Herne Bay multimillionaire has the skills connecting with the poor and downtrodden in South Auckland that he claimed.

The timing is tight but it is not yet too late for Labour to fix the mistake made by the unions and its membership last September. ¬† Read more »

Greg Presland busted for his hypocrisy

Greg Presland, David Cunliffe’s bagman and trustee of his secret donor trust (and prolific author at The Standard), gets a little lesson in why gobbing off and being sanctimonious on social media can bite you in the arse.

The hypocrisy and sanctimony is strong in this one.¬† Read more »

A ‘game changer’? Really?

Matt McCarten closely inspecting real estate listings in Takapuna

Matt McCarten closely inspecting real estate listings in Takapuna

Labour yesterday spent the day talking about the appointment of a tax cheat as David Cunliffe’s chief of staff as a ‘game changer’.

This is curious…very curious. Why?

Well because the role of a chief of staff is to manage the staff in the leaders office, manage the leader and provide political advice. Labour apologists have been at pains to point out every time someone says “lurch to the left” that a Chief of Staff does not do policy. So, quite how someone who doesn’t do policy is a ‘game changer’ is beyond me.

This morning has been wall to wall coverage of Matt McCarten as the ‘game changer’.

Can anyone remember an interview of Heather Simpson, arguably one of the most effect chiefs of staff in modern politics?

What about an interview with Wayne Eagleson?

No, didn’t think so. A chief of staff is a shadow dweller, if they are in the news or the news then something bad is happening.

There is a great deal of uneasiness inside Labour right now. Matt McCarten has spent half a generation bagging the Labour party and now is in the inner sanctum. Many Labour people I spoke to yesterday predicted that it will end in tears and the destruction of the Labour party.

But why is Matt McCarten a ‘game changer’. His political record is chequered to say the least. That is being polite. His only real claim to fame is the emergence of the Alliance, and of course its subsequent destruction. Everything else since has been a failure, even his UNITE union, which still has a massive unpaid tax bill as a result of Matt McCarten’s actions.¬† Read more »

The best Labour can do for Christmas

A reader emails:

Labour have been sending begging letters to their local electorate members, asking for donations. I was shown one from Moira Coatsworth.

At this time of the year, when the typical Labour supporter is struggling to pay for the expenses of Christmas, it is a hell of a cheek for some beltway person in their Head Office to try to sponge money from the rank and file.

Also, attached is an emailed notice which urges members to make a ridiculous attempt to¬† flood John Key’s email box.

Who thinks up this rubbish? How much do they get paid? Have they ever heard of filters, junk mail settings etc? ¬† Read more »

Bye bye Shane and Andy, Labour’s man ban will axe Cunner’s opponents

Shane Jones stands to lose big time as Labour has voted to introduce their man ban.

Audrey Young writes at the NZ Herald:

Labour leader David Cunliffe says it won’t be very hard for Labour to reach its newly adopted target of at least 45 per cent women MPs after next year’s election and at least 50 per cent women after the 2017 election.

“I don’t think it’s going to be too difficult knowing the calibre of the women candidates and nominees that we have around and the fact that our vote share is likely to be significantly higher this time than it was last time,” he said today.

“There won’t be difficulty at all for us to reach 45 this time and I’m confident we’ll reach 50 next time – I will be personally backing it.”

The constitutional motion adopting the targets was passed in a closed session debate today at the party’s annual conference at Wigram.

It has become the party’s main vehicle for achieving gender equality in representation after a controversial remit allowing some regions to have women-only selections for candidates was withdrawn by the New Zealand Council at the request of former leader David Shearer.

Party president Moira Coatsworth told reporters the way the party would try to achieve the targets was through the list ranking process of the moderating committee, after it had made an assessment of which electorate seats it thought it could win.¬† Read more »

Fraser House News tip

Normal transmission has resumed from Fraser House.

David Cunliffe has instructed Tim Barnett and Moira Coatsworth to make fundraising the top priority now for the 2014 campaign.

Barnett’s passing comment this morning:

‘Fundraising is not in my remit’¬† Read more »

Brian Edwards joins the #Laboursgottalent debate

My good friend Brian Edwards has joined the debate, and he is non too subtle either.

There is rarely any danger of overestimating Labour Party stupidity. Having described myself recently as ‚Äėa sentimental socialist‚Äô, I‚Äôm inclined to think that sentiment may be the main, and possibly the only reason for my ongoing belief in an organism genetically predisposed to push the self-destruct button when faced with the slightest glimmer of electoral success.

With David Shearer’s resignation as Leader, something more than a glimmer of electoral success in 2014 now exists in the form of a Cunliffe/Robertson leadership with Cunliffe at the helm. This is the dream team. There will be an Opposition. A Labour/Green coalition will win the election.

So let’s get the ball moving. With only 14 months to go, time is of the essence. Agreed?

Well no. Not until we’ve canvassed the stuff-up option.

Oh dear Brian doesn’t sound too enthusiastic.

Read more »

Fran O’Sullivan on Shearer and Labour

Fran O’Sullivan discusses Shearer’s demise and Labour’s mis-step in opposing the GCSB Bill.

When the Wellington cocktail party set starts chattering openly about Labour’s leadership, using slogans about how a “fish stinks from its head”, it is obvious something is up.

So it was on Wednesday night as even the MPs at Wellington public relations and lobbying firm SenateSJH’s annual bash talked freely about who was likely to replace David Shearer.

The symbolism was obvious.

Shearer’s “dead fish” stunt – where he waved a couple of dead snapper in Parliament to make a point about Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy’s botched attempt to lower the snapper catch limit – had backfired.

In reality, the only dead fish was Labour – a leading Opposition party still floundering in the polls and led by a politician who this week again proved he lacked the leadership skills to capitalise on opposition to the Government Communications Security Bureau legislation.

I am now convinced that the “dead fish” stunt was a set up, supposedly to be the final nail in the coffin so that caucus could present the letter of no confidence at tuesday’s caucus.¬† Read more »