The Marginal Labour Seats – Palmerston North

Palmerston North

Iain Lees-Galloway – Majority 1117

This is one of the toughest seats for Labour to hold. Thinking it was a safe seat they replaced Steve Maharey with Iain Lees-Galloway, widely regarded as being about as grey and mediocre and anonymous as an MP can be. In a university town they picked a nurses union rep, go figure that one out.

Iain is running against long time servant and well liked Leonie Hapeta. Leonie’s likability is a big problem for Iain, who is not at all likable and has run a nasty campaign from the very beginning. This has been compounded by his ill fortune to be caught rooting a stenographer, which saw him “look like death warmed up” and “as if he hadn’t slept in a week” when his wife busted him.

Iain has really emphasized the nastiness of the Labour Party through the campaign, starting the campaign by running a stupid protest outside Leonies business, and then lying about it.

He got front page coverage in the local paper saying he was a nasty bastard, so the campaign is framed as Iain being a nasty stenographer rooter against a local girl who has contributed heaps to her community and is quite shocked at how nasty the campaign is.

The 27% difference between Labour and National means this seat should swing, even if it didn’t have a nasty stenographer rooter running for Labour. Iain has further complications because he is facing a very competent campaigner instead of a dull, inept old guy who thought he could win votes by waving at people driving past every morning, when they usually ended up thinking maybe he had early onset Alzheimer’s.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.

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