John Armstrong talks about Mark Mitchell being asked to take a dive to let Colin Craig win Rodney to give National a life line. The precedent is when Don Brash endorsed Rodney Hide in Epsom, at the expense of Richard Worth, and Paul Goldsmith was told not to campaign in Epsom in exchange for a safe list position.
The difference between Worth, Goldsmith and Mitchell is Mitchell has a safe blue seat, he has a 20 year career ahead of him, and like most National back benchers it is in his best interests to see National go into opposition so he can get a promotion when all the senior people leave.
Richard Worth was dependent on Don Brash for a job after 2005 so he toed the line. Paul Goldsmith does what he is told and knew what he was getting into when he ran for Epsom. Paul has admirable ideological perspectives but this does not necessarily translate to vote winning. Mark Mitchell, on the other hand, has huge vote winning potential, a strong electorate infrastructure who are now all behind him, and a bright future that becomes only brighter if National loses in 2014.
It is hard to see Mark Mitchell take a dive. A guy who has a track record like Mark likes a scrap, and won’t shy away from one no matter who it is with. Peter Goodfellow is scarcely going to have him quivering in his boots. Mark is used to facing really scary people like armed offenders as a police officer and a whole lot of seriously bad, heavily armed arabs in the middle east, hell bent on killing him.
Really stern words from Peter Goodfellow or Greg Hamilton will likely be met with a polite “Get Fucked”. Far better that National looks to throw McCully under the bus if they really want Colin Craig holding them to ransom.