Questions Candidate College Attendees should Ask

Tomorrow National’s new and “improved” Candidates College meets from 8:30am to 12:30pm in Auckland prior to the conference at SkyCity. Those that haven’t been put off by the “inquisition” and passed tests more stringent than aspiring board members have to pass will be in attendance.

The organisers of the the Candidates College will try to convince aspiring candidates that their life will not be fulfilled unless they take one for the team and run for National in a red seat.

The political reality is different. National will not win seats from Labour in 2014. It will lose them. There will be fewer list MPs, and not many new ones as all the old ones consider the world will not function without them having a secure place on the National list.So you will not go to parliament unless you are selected in a safe National seat.

Questions candidates should ask are:

  1. What will National do for me if I run in a red seat?
  2. Will running in a red seat improve my chances of a better list position next time?
  3. Will running in a red seat improve my chances of selection in a blue seat next time?
  4. What will it cost me to run in a red seat with no chance of getting into parliament?
  5. Will the board and senior party officials remain impartial through selection process?
  6. What will I be taxed by the “Victory Fund” for running for National?
  7. Will I have any say over policy if I run for National or will I be screamed at if I try to influence policy?

National has a institutional culture of using and abusing people and forgetting those who help them. Anyone considering running for National in a red seat in 2014 should be aware that it will cost them a lot of money, a lot of time, and a lot of heart ache. As soon as the election is over National will forget those who took one for the team, and will do absolutely nothing to support their careers or help them get into parliament in the future.

Worse they will have a post-election review and trot out an 8 page report after months of indifferent consultation and slap themselves all on the back for a job well done. Then re-constitute the Candidates College and repeat all the same mistakes.


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  • Johnny T

    Interesting. I have the misfortune to live in the same electorate as that little weasel Chris Hipkins, and it’s difficult to imagine National ever winning Rimutaka. I guess what you are saying backs up what I’ve felt, in that National hasn’t really fielded what I would describe as strong candidates here, perhaps that reflects a lack of interest in ‘taking one for the team’.

    • Pin

       Conversly, I live in an unbelievably ‘true blue’ safe seat and our MP is one of the weakest in the National caucus……I suspect it is even more difficult to get rid of  the dross than it is to get strong candidates to ‘take one for the team’…

  • le sphincter

    Will there be ‘free speech’ during the conference ? Or is that only good  for ‘scum’ like AUSA.

    Lest hope they dont have ‘attendants’ like they did during one of Shipleys meetings when a person who paid to get in  was  ‘thrown out’ when they exercised their right to ‘free speech’.

    It ended up costing Gerry Brownlee  some money after he lost the court case.

  • Tookinator

    I was ‘invited’ to be one of the candidates at the first ever Candidates College. I ‘passed’ the entire course… But decided not to persue it further

  • Mediaan

    I disagree that National will lose seats in 2014.

    Look at the slavish media who drummed up support for the left in the last few elections -they are broke, and becoming deeply unpopular. Even fresh air via Gina may not be in time to save the incompetent and left-leaning Fairfax.

    The hardest thing will be finding red seats still left to win. Recall the blue-red map the day after the 2011 election? You could barely find the red bits. It was blue blue blue.

    The New Zealand public are smarter than they are given credit for. They will get it roght