New Zealand Labour Party

Face of the day

Moira Coatsworth

Moira Coatsworth

Moira is trying to whip Labour Party members into shape. Apparently they have been playing dirty politics with each other and that is not OK.
Dirty Politics is only OK if it is used against nasty Bloggers like Cameron Slater and that horrible John Key who all those stupid sheep voted for last month. Labour needs to be on message and well disciplined and er united.

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Face of the day

Grant Robertson with cute baby.

Grant Robertson with cute baby.

It’s now game on, with Grant Robertson confirming he’ll also contest the leadership – after several days of speculation.

“I think I have something to offer the Labour Party to reconnect with New Zealanders and for New Zealanders to see Labour as part of their future.

Grant Robertson says he believes the wider party will get behind him.

At the last leadership contest a year ago, Mr Robertson was the caucus favourite – but David Cunliffe won with the backing of party members and unions.



Come back Shane Jones, all is forgiven LOL

Face of the day

A plan so cunning you could put a feather on it and call it a Moa.

A plan so cunning you could put a feather on it and call it a Moa.

Thanks to Trevor Mallard the era of? reconstructing new life from recovered DNA is upon us. No longer is it in the realms of Science fiction to bring Dinosaurs back. He wants the Moa brought back but why stop there?

Think of the possibilities Trev.

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The real problem that faces Labour

John Key mentioned Labour’s real problem yesterday in his address in reply speech:

“David Cunliffe doesn’t like David Parker. David Parker does not like Grant Robertson. Grant Robertson does not like Clayton Cosgrove. Clayton Cosgrove . . . he’s not real fond of Andrew Little. Andrew Little doesn’t like Shane Jones. Shane Jones doesn’t like anybody in the Labour Party. Phil Goff does not like David Cunliffe, and Annette King doesn’t like anyone that Phil Goff doesn’t like. And I say to myself, it’s not hard to see why they chose someone who’s spent half his life in war-torn places like Somalia and Bosnia, because that’s what the Labour Party’s like now.”

It might sound flippant but it shows that Labour after a term without the steel of Heather Simpson to control caucus and the ambitions of pretenders Labour is now akin to street gangs with knives drawn giving each other the eye.

There isn’t any caucus unity, and just watching their body language yesterday as David Shearer stuttered and fumbled his way through 30 minutes of yawn inducing faux-rhetoric said more than their silence during the speech.

David Shearer might have stared down armed Somali warlords but having the big guns of UN peacekeepers or US Marines at your back in no way prepares you for the sharp shanks of political competitors waiting for you to trip up.

Is this the Hard Labour that Phil speaks of?

Phil Goff yesterday spoke about a week of “Hard Labour”, his speech coincided with a nasty brochure being sent to new mothers. Is this the “Hard Labour” that Phil Goff speaks of?

There are many questions outstanding regarding this nasty brochure. They are individually addressed using details not widely known or public. How is Labour obtaining the data. My correspondent tells me that they have never signed an ECE postcard, never belonged to Labour and wonders how they know she recently had a child. She is feeling very creeped out by this mail out from the Labour party.

More good press for Goff…Not

Felix Marwick give Phil Goff a serve:

But the Labour leadership issue highlights some of the developments that stemmed from its succession plan at the last election. At the time it was seen by many (and I was one) that to have an orderly transition which saw experience retained was not a bad move. Experienced senior MPs led by Phil Goff were there to develop the party?s new talent and build an opposition party of force and skill.

Well, that?s the way it was supposed to work.

Hindsight is a marvellous thing and it?s easy to say this now. But perhaps the better option for Labour would have been to wipe the slate clean. Have a fresh start with new faces and no lingering ties to the Clark years. Perhaps that would have allowed voters to more easily identify with a new Labour Party and not suffer the hangovers of the past. It could very well have shortened Labour?s time in opposition. However the decision was made, history?s been written, and we will never know what might have been.


Even the Seppos think Goff is dog tucker

Phil Goff is dog tucker. The only reason they haven’t rolled him is that none of the pretenders have the guts or have the money to get someone with the guts to axe him between the shoulders.

We know he is rooted because even the American’s think he is stuffed and have said so in their cables back to Washington. The cables released in the latest batch by Wikileaks say:

“He stands at the right end of the political spectrum of the?left-centre Labour Party. To maintain his tenuous grip on?party leadership, Goff needs to convince the left wing of?the Labour base that he represents their concerns.”

Don’t you love their turn of phrase, “tenuous grip on party leadership”.


What is really going?

This morning Darren Hughes outed himself as the MP under investigation by police, and good on him for coming forward…eventually.

It now transpires that Labour leadership have known about this for two weeks and felt that it was of no relevance to bring forward.

The Herald Reports:

?Labour leader Phil Goff said Mr Hughes had told him of the complaint a couple of weeks ago and assured him he had done nothing wrong.?

That is all fine and dandy, but what about the ?high? standards that Labour have demanded from National constantly over the last two years? If the shoe was on the other foot Labour would be demanding for the MP?s resignation, demanding Key to explain why he hadn?t mentioned it earlier, demanding to know why Key hadn?t acted sooner and only acted after the media found out, and accused National of some sort of cover up!

?He said he had no reason not to believe Mr Hughes, whom he held in high regard.?

So, why is it different now that it is a Labour MP? Like I say, if John Key had made a similar statement, Labour would be having a field day about this whole thing, challenging Mr Key as to why he takes an MP?s word.

?Mr Hughes was not sent on leave immediately because Mr Goff said he did not believe the complaint was relevant to Mr Hughes’ ability to do his job as an MP.?

So what has changed? If there is nothing to worry about why can?t he still do his job?

This next quote from Phil Goff is telling in the way that he makes it:

“It’s never a pleasant experience for a complaint to be made against you as an individual and he is asserting very clearly he has done nothing,?he believes, that is wrong.”

That last part of the statement is very telling. When I read this I instantly thought of two things:

  1. Goff is 100% convinced that Hughes is innocent, though he?definitely thought Richard Worth was guilty.
  2. Goff is leaving wiggle room to back track if it turns out the Hughes has done something wrong.

This is starting to look a little more interesting than first thought. It was already stoking speculation. This latest lot of comments from Goff only makes the fire burn even more, because he is throwing fuel on the fire.

Also, interestingly enough, it could be looking more like they were trying to cover this up:

?A journalist had asked about a complaint against an MP on Monday and was told by a Labour spokeswoman that it was not a Labour MP. ?Mr Goff said the spokeswoman was speaking in “good faith” at the time. He said only he and his leadership team had known about the issue.?

I bet, as I have said already, that if the boot was on the other foot and it was National in this situation, that Goff would be accusing the Nats of lying and covering it up. And he is already blaming National for the story being revealed:

?Mr Goff also fingerpointed the National Party for leaking the story, saying he was told it had come from the Beehive.?

I find it interesting that as of last night, no one knew anything about the incident and now we are being told that Labour leadership have known about it for two weeks. Interestingly Andrew “Three Hats” Little claims he knew nothing about it? Is Goff keeping secrets from him?

This is the last thing that the Labour party really needed. But it would appear that it is a lot of their own making now that the truth is seeping through.

With Trevor Mallard working the phones hard out from his hospital bed and Annette King ordering MPs to STFU and run for cover, this has all the hallmarks of a snow job for sure. As more and more facts emerge it will be interesting to see how Labour deals with the issue.

Is the Labour party democratic?

Well of course not. Just look at the rigging of the selection in Mt Albert so Phil Goff’s chosen candidate could parachute in from Amman and the current gerry-mandering and reverse selection going on in Te Atatu.

Now it appears Phil Goff is hijacking another selection to ensure Kris Faafoi from his own office gains selection.

The Manatee blogs:

Fran Mold has today quit as Deputy Political Editor for TVNZ, according to well placed sources.

The reason is an agreement in principle that she will replace Kris Faafoi as Chief Press Secretary to Phil Goff.

The hirsute Fran Mold, best remembered for shrieking her way through Labour Party supplied lines at Don Brash seems set to replace Faafoi in Goff’s office, at least confirming where her political inclinations lie.

Serious questions remain though over the democratic principles, if any, that underpin Labour Party selections.

Could it be 7 by-elections?

Matthew Hooton wrote in the NBR today (I had to creep up to the dairy at Bucklands Beach and bag a copy of NBR since my impoverishment at the hand of Fidelity Life) about the possibility of no less than six by-elections but he missed out Christchurch East, where it is widely thought that “Patsy” Dalziel is off overseas shortly.

Mana MP Winnie Laban?s Labour colleagues owe her a big bouquet of teuila, heilala and tagimoucia ? first to congratulate her for being appointed assistant vice-chancellor (Pasifika) at Victoria University but second because of the opportunity she?s created to take the fight to National on strong Labour ground.

Labour?s top strategists understand that byelections on home turf can only help improve the party?s odds of success for 2011, which have slowly been creeping upward since Phil Goff finally manned up to deal to Chris Carter.

Yes, byelections can be unpredictable ? but if you?re an opposition, struggling against a popular incumbent, unpredictability is a godsend.

Nothing else gives an opposition such profile to highlight a government?s faults, discover a few more, and urge voters to send a message to Wellington ? all without anyone worrying their votes might actually change the government.

Right now Matthew Hooton is spot on. Multiple by-elections give Phil Goff the much needed bolster with which to secure a breach in the government’s defences and at the same time strengthen caucus into a true Phil Goff led labour Party rather than him having to put up with the cast offs of Helen Clark.

Ironically Phil Goff paved the way with his inspired rigging of the selection in Mt Albert and parachuting in David Shearer. It worked then and it should work now as Labour looks to expend $500k per by-election of public monies in order to rejuvenate caucus before the election.

Matthew Hooton’s suggested by-elections now include Manukau East where good mate of George Hawkins is past his use-by date.

Labour has an even broader opportunity. In Andrew Little ? also boss of the powerful Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union, the country?s largest ? Labour has as its president The Great Negotiator.

If Mr Little puts Labour?s 2011 effort ahead of his own post-election leadership ambitions, it is not beyond him to engineer at least three other byelections, all in safe Labour seats, for the same day as Mana.

It?s an opportunity for national publicity ? all on Labour themes ? that it simply can?t afford to forgo.

In West Auckland, Mr Little could arrange for Mr Carter?s disciplinary action to be dropped in exchange for him resigning as MP for Te Atatu.

In Christchurch, Jim Anderton could be asked to step aside from Wigram, ahead of his election as mayor of Christchurch.

Likewise, in South Auckland, George Hawkins could leave early from Manurewa to concentrate on local politics.

Ditto perhaps Ross Robertson in Manukau East.

Or Pete Hodgson in Dunedin North.

Pete Hodgson is way past sensible to stay on, he is still suffering from Key Derangement Syndrome and has taken to posting outrageous lies on Red Alert or silly polls. He clearly is no longer the great and trusted strategist and he has also stated that he won’t be returning next election. Phil Goff may as well ask the old duffer to shuffle off too.

Coincidentally today I banged in to old Labour stalwart and historian Dr. Michael Bassett and so I took the opportunity to grab his take on the Labour Party today. He provided me with an insight that I had previously not noticed, that of the influence of the “Ex-Presidents Club”that loyally got Helen Clark to the position she held. The “Ex-Presidents Club” is still largely intact, now only missing Margaret Wilson. Jim Anderton, Maryan Street and Ruth Dyson are all in parliament and all in the past were heavily involved in stacking LECs and floor votes in favour of Clarkists. It was Bassett’s contention that little has changed amongst this group especially Street and Dyson, indeed there are very strong ru8mour that Street and Dyson see them selves as the “dream team” leadership option within Labour and that they are sitting there actively tripping up Phil Goff as he seeks to distance his party from the apparatchiks of the Clark years. Dyson was involved in a failed attempt to get Chris Carter selected when the vote was 4 v 3 against selecting him. It was Michael Bassett that nixed her schemes to amend the Labour Party constitution in order to get Carter in earlier.

Phil Goff must grasp the nettle and use this opportunity to remake the Labour Party and to refresh caucus and take the fight to National in ways that they have not even contemplated in the master plan of trying to secure a second term.

It is game on for next year for sure.