Labour have anounced a new way of choosing party leader.
Under the current rules, only MPs vote on the leader, but under the proposed rules – due to be signed off at the party’s annual conference in November – MPs will hold 40 per cent of the vote, members 40 per cent and affliates 20 per cent.
In general I think this is a good proposal. It is the result of extensive consultation and discussion.
There are potential problems with leadership selection (there always are), but it may work fine, and it will only be proven over time. And if the balance isn’t right they can look at tweaking it..
It’s odd for Stuff to promote Unions in the headline, certainly they have gained a significant say (as affiliates), but so have party members.
But degree of union influence is contentious, both within the party and with potential voters – it wouldn’t look good if it appears as if a big barking union tail wags the party dog.
I think the key to this is how the union portion of the vote is decided. If it looks like a few union officials have a disproportiate amount of say I think that will be negative.
But if affiliates/unions can be transparent and show that their portion of the vote is based on wider democratic principles it should be fine.
17 July 2012
The New Zealand Council of the Labour Party has now endorsed a wide range of important changes for our Labour Party organisation.