Blood & Guts, Labour set for a leadership stoush

So David Cunliffe finally resigned as leader, he says to take the blame for the loss.

His sentiment was too little, too late.

He then proceeded to start campaigning immediately for re-election as Labour’s leader.

Meanwhile Grant Robertson has manned up and put his name in the hat too.

Both candidates are damned.

David Cunliffe by necessity has to run a campaign by maligning his caucus and heaping blame for the election loss on them. He will talk about renewal in code, without directly reflecting the problem he will face in that all but 4 of his MPs are electorate MPs and rinsing them is hard, if not impossible.

Cunliffe’s entire pitch will run something like what he ran the past year. I just need time (he had a year and made matters worse), I’m the only one who can beat John Key (No one can yet make that claim), I won 2 out of three debates (even though I lost the election), the polls were wrong (even though they were right), with more time we can close the gap (even though it got wider) and so on. That is all he can do.

Basically his pitch to the party is that he is the least worst option. 

- TVNZ

– TVNZ

Grant Robertson meanwhile will make the pitch that the caucus was right all along, that David Cunliffe really does have a silent T in his name…and that they can’t win with Cunliffe as leader so they better give him a go because…well that is where Robbo’s story falls apart.

His CV is thinner than even Nikki Kaye’s or Jacinda Ardern’s and that is saying something. Still at least he doesn’t make things up on his CV like Cunliffe did.

The only saving grace for Robbo is that he once worked for Helen in her office. But apart from that he really is a fat, cardy wearing, low level, ineffectual, Wellington beltway bureaucrat.

The blood and guts will be spectacular. The fight won’t be pleasant and the result between those two is likely to be a massive split in the party.

If Cunliffe wins, his caucus will rinse him again with a no confidence motion and they will keep on doing it until the party gets it right. If they don’t then they will have been emasculated, and they will sit there in their electorate seats watching the demise of the party even further.

If Robertson wins the unions and , members will revolt, but they are revolting anyway.

Stock up on popcorn, this is going to get nasty and immensely enjoyable to watch.


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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. 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 who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

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

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