Monday, October 13, 2008

Labour list candidates 29 to 25, any better?

Continuing my lengthy series on Labour party candidates are list positions 29 to 25. Yes they are all a shoo in, but will any make it on the electorate vote? I'm guessing just one.

Kelvin Davis – Te Tai Tokerau – number 29: Photo, profile, no website (he's not this Kelvin Davis). Kelvin was a teacher and school principal. He states: “Maori will achieve greatness by becoming educated, by attaining influential and meaningful positions in society and business and assisting to make decisions and inform policy that will help us all become ‘great’. Maori need to be proactive, positive and inclusive.” Much true, although an element of “being great through government” isn’t good. He wants to “create the conditions where all Maori achieve beyond their potential. I am going to make a difference.” If only it was about encouragement of the cultural change needed to do it, but surely he holds some hope. You could do worse than elect this man.

However, he is up against Hone Harawira, a great statist and populist. Harawira won with 52.4% against Dover Samuels on 33.4% in 2005, a yawning gap. However Labour did get 49.3% of the party vote against the Maori Party on 31%. Kelvin sounds like a major step up from Hone Harawira, but his chances can’t be great. Prediction: Harawira will hold on comfortably, he has the image and profile to be secure.

Carol Beaumont – Maungakiekie – number 28: Photo, profile, no website (but the CTU has a profile on her -down the page). Carol says “I have always been involved in representative and advocacy roles seeking to make positive change.” Is she a unionist then? “ I am proud of the changes that we have benefited from under Labour but there is more change we all want and need. For all New Zealanders I want to work to strengthen our democracy”. Pablum for the proletariat, because the Electoral Finance Act has really strengthened democracy hasn’t it? This is Mark Gosche’s electorate, so his retirement will mean Carol will face a tougher race. He won in 2005 with 53.3% against National’s Paul Goldsmith on 31.6%, and party vote was very similar with Labour on 50.7% and National on 33.5%. National is putting up Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, who may appeal to this electorate with a relatively high Pacific Islander population, so the race may be more interesting than it first looks. However, a gap of over 20% is considerable and so it is likely Carol will get through. Prediction: Carol Beaumont will take Maungakiekie, but with a far narrower majority than Mark Gosche.

Charles Chauvel – Ohariu – number 27: Photo, profile, and no website link, but he does have a website. Charles is a list MP. He claims credit for doing this:
• “open a new park in Korokoro,
• lead the 2007 Carbon Challenge in the Ohariu Valley,
• support childcare centres and schools across the electorate,
• advocate for improved transport - from new tunnels on the Johnsonville line through to the improvements to SH2”

I can fairly say I did more for lowering the floors of tunnels on the Johnsonville line than Charles ever did, so there he is claiming credit for decisions that have virtually nothing to do with him. Charles does say on his website he is into more integration with Australia - Schengen agreement style - which can't be a bad thing.

Now the interesting thing is that this is about Peter Dunne, and so both Charles and Katrina Shanks of National (a list MP also) are battling to unseat. Dunne has a big majority in this seat, and if votes are to go from him they are unlikely to go to Chauvel as, after all, they are both in the same government. However, Dunne’s local presence is substantial, and despite all the best will in the world, he is likely to remain the local MP. Prediction: Dunne will hold on reasonably comfortably, but the swing to National will see Chauvel coming third behind Katrina Shanks.

Phil Twyford – North Shore – number 26: Profile and website, which has only a photo on it!After living in the United States it was wonderful coming back to a New Zealand that is optimistic, confident, moving ahead on so many fronts, and sure of our place in the world. I think a lot of the credit for that goes to the Labour-led Government of Helen Clark. Labour’s prudent economic management has delivered economic growth that has allowed overdue investment in our infrastructure, established the superannuation fund that will give security to New Zealanders when they retire, and allowed significant new investments in health and education.”

Idiot. He thinks government is so important, he thinks that it hasn’t reaped the benefits of the previous reforms.

The Shore offers a great quality of life and unquestionable beauty but it is feeling the strains of rapid growth and development.” Not any more it isn’t! Given Wayne Mapp took North Shore in 2005 with 59.6% of the vote against Phil Twyford with 33.3%, he hasn’t a hope in hell of winning. Even the party vote is a lost cause, with National getting 53.5% in 2005 against Labour’s 29.9% Prediction: Phil Twyford will become a list MP, but Wayne Mapp will keep North Shore with no threat.

Moana Mackey – East Coast – number 25: Profile and photo (looking a bit different). She’s a biochemist! Done the union thing too, but what a waste – a scientist telling others what to do. Now she’s currently a list MP. “Over the last three years I have made the East Coast electorate my number one priority, and I hope that my work securing funding for local projects, lobbying on local issues, and assisting hundreds of you personally through clinics proves that I get results and shows that I am the right person for the job.” She likes chasing pork for the electorate too. However, she hasn’t much chance. In 2005, Anne Tolley won the seat with 44.8% of the vote against her on 40.8%. National got 42.2% of the party vote against Labour’s 39%, so this is nearly a bell weather electorate. Moana hasn’t really got much a chance this time when the tide is turning against Labour. Prediction: Anne Tolley will remain MP, but Moana will be in on the list.

So there you have it people, more outstanding talent pretty much guaranteed to walk into Parliament - because one in three New Zealanders think the Labour Party is so good for them.

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