Labour goes where John Key fears to tread

One of the reasons Maurice Williamson didn’t stand was John Key’s and National’s reluctance to use the National party brand in local body elections.

Labour has no such qualms, going so far as to even have their Deputy Leader authorise candidates campaign materials including their Facebook page.


It’s interesting that Labour’s candidate for Wellington City Council’s Lambton ward, Mark Peck, is having his advertisements and Facebook page authorised by Grant Robertson MP – at his constituency office address (220 Willis Street).


Aren’t constituency offices funded by Parliamentary Services and, if so, is that a valid use of taxpayers’ funds?

Robertson’s website states his electorate office is at 220 Willis Street.


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  • Colin Price

    Its all about meeting the percieved market. Key and Co dont want to do the local thing because it might rot the “exclusivity” of the National brand. Bollocks! It appears National’s power-brokers are happy to let their image at anything other than central government slip backward….
    A golden opportunity to own the political map goes begging, all because of a few knob-ends acting like losers. If National want in at the next General election, their brand needs some serious sharpening up. A year on local councils may very well do that, but sadly, the elite do not want to meet the market. Many brands have been consigned to history for doing just that.
    If only sense can prevail!!!

    • Sir Cullen’s Sidekick

      Don’t get too excited Colin bro. National doesn’t stand in local elections because they know they can’t win. End of story.

  • Jimmie

    Probably a case of National being scared of their brand being tainted by some obscure

    mayor or councilor being snapped doing something stupid.

    For example when the clown was up to his hi-jinks on the North Shore several years ago imagine if he had stood under the banner of National?

    (National Mayor of North Shore caught pissing on tree, National mayor of North Shore snapped for sending drunken texts at 3am and so on)

    I guess they figure that its best not go local body elections as it would be too hard to keep an eye on mayors and councilors up and down the country.

    There could be room though for an affiliated party that has similar values to National but has a separate identity which focuses primarily on winning majorities on local councils – a good training ground for future pollies?

    • Colin Price

      Blokes like Maurie Williamson rarely do “stupid” as a rule.

    • If you have the branding you have control over who gets selected, and Maurice Williamson is hardly an obscure mayor

  • peterwn

    Main political parties have had limited influence in Wellington City. Hence Celia did not stand under the Green banner. Labour councillors have traditionally been more concerned for the good of Wellington and have pointedly refused to toe the party line (especially when Mark Blumsky was Mayor). Seems Labour now wants to assert more control by appointing the likes of Mark Peck as candidates.

    As far as electorate offices go, AFAIK, it is quite OK for a MP to use it for party political purposes if the MP comes to an appropriate cost sharing arrangement with Parliamentary Services. In this case a few hundred dollars pa would surely suffice for shared use of the street address and PO Box.

    Incidentally the building housing Grant’s office is owned by the Maritime Union of NZ.

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