Clare Curran survey: 1 = not at all related

Clare Curran has a 2014 Post-Election Survey on Survey Monkey that suggests a failure to understand what when wrong for Labour in the last election, but is an inadvertent indicator of why Labour has lost touch and lost support.

It has four questions repeated:

1. From your perspective, which core theme or policy area was the most central to Labour’s campaign this past election? (you will have the opportunity to list up to three other core themes or policy areas later in the survey)

4. From your perspective, what was another core theme or policy area that was central to Labour’s campaign this past election? (you will have the opportunity to list up to two other core themes or policy areas later in the survey).

7. From your perspective, what was another core theme or policy area that was central to Labour’s campaign this past election? (you will have the opportunity to list up to one other core theme or policy area later in the survey).

10. From your perspective, what was another core theme or policy area that was most central to Labour’s campaign this past election?

My guess is  that the number of ordinary voters interested in responding to any of these questions would be close to 0% – but what is her target market for this survey?

There is no sign of it on her web page, nor on her Facebook page. Nor on her Twitter, which has this profile:

Dunedin South Labour, communications and IT, regional & economic development. Never gives up on impt stuff.

For someone into communications her activity on line has been very sparse lately. Her last tweet was on October 8, her last post on Facebook on October 18.

Each of her survey questions asked for this feedback:

How well did this theme or policy area relate to issues that matter to you, with 1 = not at all related, and 5 = extremely related?

How well did this theme and policy area relate to issues that matter to your neighbours, with 1 = not at all related, and 5 = extremely related?

The survey is probably 1 = not at all related to me but I don’t think “themes or policy areas” were Labours main problems – failing  present themselves as a credible potential leader of Government and failing to relate to voters were far bigger issues, and if this survey is any indicator then 1 = not at all related continues.

When I first decided to get involved in politics I approached Clare to see if she was interested in fresh ideas and input – this was just after Labour’s loss in 2008 and I thought they would be keen on re-establishing relevance with voters and rebuilding.

That offer stills stands, but this survey doesn’t look promising, it appears to be 1 = not at all related to what Labour need to be doing.

(This survey was brought to my attention by two journalists on Twitter who were far from complimentary about the survey).

Curran rules out Internet party

Clare Curran has categorically ruled out jumping waka and joining the Internet Party.

She was an obvious suspect after an NZ Herald editorial claim:

In interviews with the Herald on Sunday this week, Dotcom and his lieutenants have confirmed they plan to spend up to $2 million in an attempt to get into Parliament with enough MPs to hold the balance of power.

More worrying for Key, they are negotiating a deal with Hone Harawira and claim to be talking to four sitting electorate MPs about joining up with the Internet Party, in the most aggressive poaching exercise in this country’s contemporary political history.

Curran has previously acknowledged visiting Dotcom at his mansion twice – see Clare Curran, Kim Dotcom and the Internet Party and More on Clare Curran and Dotcom.

Curran has ruled out joining Dotcom’s party.

@clarecurranmp

Just for the record people who know me know I am tribal Labour. It’s in my bones. Ruling myself out. Fascinating though.

@Inventory2 a correction might be in order following your unfounded speculation.

@Inventory2

@clarecurranmp Is that a categorical denial?

‏@clarecurranmp

@Inventory2 yes

@Inventory2

@clarecurranmp I’m happy to publish that :)

A current electorate MP like Curran would probably be committing political suicide by jumping to the Internet Party.

They would lose the party support that got them elected, and in Curran’s Dunedin South electorate it would seriously risk splitting the Labour vote and making it much easier for National to win. That would be a double disaster.

It would give Dotcom publicity for his party and may (or may not) help his party vote but, especially if unless a waka jumping electorate MP was very high on the Internet Party list, they would likely be sacrificing their own political career.

Cunliffe: from Saviour to Martyr – Crucifixion next?

After being on the defensive for a week trying to deal with gaffe after gaffe David Cunliffe changed tack yesterday and tried playing the embattled martyr card – but his claims are contradicted by some obvious facts.

He started early on Newstalk ZB yesterday, responding to questions by Rachel Smalley:

Smalley: Do you accept though that it looks shonkey.

Cunliffe: I accept that there is a full scale assault against me and the Labour Party, and I would respectfully suggest that has something to do with what we stand for, which is a program of change that will bring a fairer better New Zealand.

Smalley: Where’s that assault coming from?

Cunliffe: I think that assault is coming from obviously from the National Party and no doubt from some people that support the National Party.

And…

Smalley: There are stronger calls…there are strong calls now for you from some quarters to resign. Under what circumstances would you relinquish the leadership?

Cunliffe: Um I think that is a very very silly suggestion and I have had absolutely no conversations to that effect within the caucus I can assure you. This is a sustained assault on a political party by their political opponents, and I’m sure people can see it for what it is.

In Bruised Cunliffe bounces back on Stuff:

“Mate, that is just Wellington beltway politics,” he said yesterday. “Government has been trying to throw the kitchen sink at me in the last couple of weeks just to discredit me.”

And…

Earlier in the week the Labour leader admitted the late disclosure was a lapse of judgment but yesterday he said: “They are threatened by the ideas that we are bringing to New Zealanders. Everybody gets a chance, not just the few at the top. I guess the guys at the top, they don’t like that because they think they are going to pay for it and so they are really trying to take me out.

“Well, they can try but I am tougher than that.”

There’s a problem with this approach – it doesn’t stack up with all the facts. “A sustained assault on a political party by their political opponents”?  “Government has been trying to throw the kitchen sink at me”?

Over the last week there have been four significant embarrassments for Cunliffe.

  1. Criticising Key for living in a flash house in a leafy suburb when Cunliffe lives similarly. And claiming to have a middle income when his own household income is estimated at $700k.

This was initiated by Cunliffe attacking John Key, not the Government attacking Cunliffe. Journalists seem to have spotted glaring hypocrisy for themselves.

  1. The revelation that Cunliffe used a secret donations trust for the Labour leadership contest.

Where did this story originate? Claire Trevett seems to have been first in NZ Herald on Monday – Cunliffe used agent to take donations for campaign – and appears to have been promoted by the deadline for filing pecuniary interests on Friday.

There is no evidence and no specific claims that National started this story. That seems unlikely. There have been claims it came from information from inside Labour.

  1. The news that Cunliffe failed to disclose a savings trust in his statement of pecuniary interests on time last year, and made a late disclosure at the time David Sheare’s non-disclosure of a bank account was in the news.

This is the least serious – several other MPs were also prompted by Shearer’s embarrassment to improve their disclosures. Patrick Gower says he initiated this story, with colleague Tova O’Brien checking the register. Journalists doing what journalists do.

  1. The sending of an IT policy document and notes of a Cunliffe speech to IT minister Amy Adams.

This was initially misreported. Clare Curran took the blame and later claimed media “had not listened to what she had said” but her story didn’t stack up.

Bizarrely the following day Curran said that while the email was sent from Cunliffe’s office she decided she should take responsibility. “I think a member of Parliament or minister or whatever should take responsibility. Nobody forced me to do it.” There’s been credible claims Curran was thrown under a bus by Cunliffe (or Matt McCarten) and she stoicly copped one for the team.

Curran also said “We stuffed up yesterday. Let’s hope today’s better.”

It’s easy to label opposing parties as the culprits – and there has also been a lot of blaming of the media. But when it’s pretty obvious these are mostly own goals by Cunliffe and Labour trying to divert the blame lacks credibility, adding to rather than detracting from their embarrassments.

Cunliffe seems to find it difficult to say “We stuffed up”, or his political advisers are telling him it wouldn’t be a good look. But making hollow accusations isn’t a good look either.

Cunliffe started by presenting himself as Saviour. He has moved on to Martyr. Is the next step Crucifixion?

And will his own party be his Judas, or will the condemnation come from the voters?

Has Curran been thrown under a bus in snowballing SNAFU?

Has David Cunliffe thrown Clare Curran under a bus to avoid the blame for yet another Labour fiasco?

ODT/APNZ Labour accidentally leaks policy details:

Labour has revealed it sent internal policy documents and speech notes for leader David Cunliffe to a Government minister.

Information and Communications Technology (ICT) spokeswoman Clare Curran’s staff accidently emailed the documents to Communications and Information Technology Minister Amy Adams.

Who emailed it?

Vernon Small in Cunliffe’s worst day:

His admission came as associate ICT spokeswoman Clare Curran’s office emailed an outline of the party’s ICT plan to Communications Minister Amy Adams.

Curran quickly released the document to the media, but the copy she provided was an earlier draft and Labour was then forced to release the version actually sent to Adams.

There’s a number of odd things about this.

And notes for a Cunliffe speech were also in the email -

The background notes were for a speech that Mr Cunliffe was scheduled to give yesterday morning.

- why would Curran have Cunliffe’s speech notes? There are claims the email wasn’t sent from her office.

@patrickgowernz
Clare Curran did not send out Amy Adams Labour’s IT policy ideas – Labour says blame is with “a staffer”

@Whaleoil
I’m reliably informed it came from Cunliffe’s office, Curan thrown under bus by his team, another cock up from leader

@mackersline
M
iles Erwin sent out the clarifying clarification. #primesuspect

I don’t know if he still is but Erwin has been the Labour Party press secretary.

This morning:

RadioLIVE Newsroom@LIVENewsDesk 

Clare Curran denies her office intentionally leaked Labour’s I-C-T policy ideas to Communication Minister Amy Adams

One accusation has been that the leak was an ABC faction attempt to further destabilise Cunliffe’s leadership.

Curran refused to speak with Radio NZ yesterday. She is trying to leave yesterday behind her:

Clare Curran@clarecurranmp 

We stuffed up yesterday. Let’s hope today’s better. One good thing is that there’s now some bold policy ideas out there ripe for discussion

Note the use of “we”. Curran is usually a frequent tweeter, that is her first since Monday.

Has the blame been dumped on Curran? Labour are a bit of a train wreck at the moment but even ion that context there are some strange aspects to this cock-up.

Has Cunliffe thrown Curran under a bus? If so was he trying to avoid getting yet another fiasco added to his snowballing SNAFU?

UPDATE: Whale Oil is on to the Dotcom connection.

How much of Labour’s ICT policy did Dotcom write?

My sources inside the grounds of the Dotcom Mansion tell me that these proposals were the exact ones discussed with Dotcom, indeed promoted by him and that extensive meetings were held after Curran’s two visits to the mansion to discuss them and flesh them out. Make no mistake this policy is Dotcom’s policy…the source are adamant that this is what has been planned all along.

With all the secret meetings, and now secret donation trusts one has to wonder just who are the anonymous other parties who donated, and given the leak of a policy document that bears an uncanny resemblance to policy discussions held at the mansion questions might be validly raised.

UPDATE2: lprent at The Standard:

National’s ICT failures

And no it wasn’t Clare Curran who screwed up. She just took the hit.

UPDATE3: It’s now been confirmed that the document leak came from Cunliffe’s office and Clare Curran had no responsibility for it but she decided to take responsibility “Because I don’t want a staff member to get the blame for a mistake, and I think that’s really important.”

Some clarification but more bizarre - Labour ICT doc sent from Cunliffe’s office

 

More on Clare Curran and Dotcom

After Whale Oil suggested Clare Curran had been visiting and phoning Kim Dotcom she conceded:

In my work I’ve met @kimdotcom 4 times, including at public events. In NZ it’s no crime to meet critics of the state.

The ODT referred to this in an editorial yesterday – MPs must come clean on Dotcom:

Even Dunedin South MP Clare Curran confirmed on Twitter she had met Mr Dotcom four times, including at public events.

She can be excused given her role as an information, communication and technology spokeswoman for the Labour Party.

Rachel Glucina added to the Curran connection in her column yesterday:

Labour MP Clare Curran, who hails from the Deep South, was at Dotcom’s Coatesville estate “at least twice, and once with a large suitcase”, a source said. She caught a taxi once and was chauffeured another time. But why the baggage?

Curran confirmed she did go to the mansion twice, but can’t recall travelling heavy.

“I was probably on my way to or from home,” she told The Diary.

As to what was discussed, Curran won’t divulge. “At that time I was spokesperson for ICT and I meet with a lot of people.”

Her leader, David Cunliffe, assured The Diary “there has been no discussion with Dotcom from any member of my Labour caucus about a deal or financial contribution to the Labour Party”.

Curran tweeted on it again last night:

Can I gently reiterate that in our country it’s not a crime for politicians to meet with critics of the govt or people who r facing charges.

It sounds odd mentioning ‘crime’ in both her explanatory tweets. No one has claimed that visiting Dotcom is a crime. It is being questioned as being politically unwise.

An exchange followed on Twitter:

But it is unacceptable when these people have been critics of other politicians who have met with these people.

The left have been very critical of John Banks for meeting with Kim, Yet left wing politicians have been meeting Kim.

Those MPs not facing electoral fraud & denying knowledge, Banks is; if impropriety surfaces demand answers them

But we don’t know what these MPs are going there for.

So I’ve asked Clare:

Does that also apply to you? Why were you visiting Dotcom?

And “I was probably on my way to or from home,” needs clarification, Coatesville is a long way from home in Dunedin.

And when were your visits?

I’ll update here if I get a reply to clarify Curran’s visits.

Winston’s Dotcom visit source revealed

John Key seems to have revealed what was obvious to just about everyone except try hard Labour activists and Winston Peters – he learnt about Winston Peters visiting Kim Dotcom from Whale Oil.

So the PM just more or less admitted @Whaleoil was his source on Winston Peters’ visit to the Dotcom mansion. They speak regularly.

Whale Oil has been hinting at politicians visiting Dotcom for months and has blogged about the Peters three visits all week, so this is hardly surprising.

It was as much a revelation as the Pope suddenly discovering something that was said in the bible.

Meanwhile Rachel Glucina, the journalist who broke the story last Friday,  hints at her possible sources in her column today. First some self praise:

The Diary broke the news that Russel Norman visited the Dotcom mansion twice to talk the millionaire out of setting up a political party. This column also busted Don Brash making a visit, and Winston Peters, who dropped around three times.

Some more gossip:

Labour MP Clare Curran, who hails from the Deep South, was at Dotcom’s Coatesville estate “at least twice, and once with a large suitcase”, a source said. She caught a taxi once and was chauffeured another time. But why the baggage?

You can fit a lot of cash in a large suitcase (but that’s a Mallard type insinuation).

BAD NEWS KEEPS FOLLOWING KIM

Dotcom has endured abysmal album reviews, a botched foray into politics, a broken ankle and MP mates scarpering for cover. His bodyguard Wayne Tempero left his employ in October, and now four security men have walked off the job. They resigned last Saturday.

Dotcom is relying on the strict enforcement of confidentiality agreements to ensure former employees won’t squeal and reveal anything private.

“They resigned because they have had a better job offer,” he told The Diary.

As for Tempero, Dotcom admits he could no longer afford to pay him what he was earning. “Wayne resigned because he was getting half the pay of what he was getting two years ago and he couldn’t sustain that. He is starting his own company. We are still friends.”

“Four security men” and…

Ask John Key how he knew about Winston Peters visiting the mansion 3 times. Only 4 people knew about it & probably Ian Fletcher at the GCSB.

…is obviously a coincidence but it only takes one talkative person. Tweeted on Wednesday:

@patrickgowernz Chase the disillusioned former employees. They tend to talk.

 

Clare Curran, Kim Dotcom and the Internet Party

Clare Curran is yet another MP linked to Kim Dotcom and his mansion in Coatesville.

This came up yesterday amidst attention on Russel Norman and Winston Peters. Norman has admitted visiting Dotcom – see Russel Norman transcript with Duncan Garner – and it has been alleged that Peters has visited at least three times and Peter has refused to deny it.

Bill Ralston asked on Twitter:

It might be helpful if all politicians who have had talks with KDC declared their interest and what was discussed, who’s been with him & why.

Whale Oil replied:

Clare Curran and Jacinda Ardern.

Yes, Clare twice at least, plus rings him, Jacinda to be fair at social function only.

They were there…Curran at least twice, cabbed it once, driven once

So Ralston asked the MPs.

Hi @clarecurranmp & @jacindaardern can you clarify @Whaleoil comment that you visited @KimDotcom. When, why and what was discussed please.

Strange. I haven’t heard anything back from @clarecurranmp or @jacindaardern about their meetings with @KimDotcom Anyone heard anything?

Can @clarecurranmp confirm the number of meetings with @KimDotcom & what was discussed and @jacindaardern confirm Xmas lights the only time?

That’s strange @clarecurranmp was on twitter just an hour ago. Must have got too busy to reply.

So we have @winstonpeters@clarecurran and @jacindaardern too embarrassed to talk about their dealings with @KimDotcom OK. Got the picture.

To Jacinda Ardern:

You sure you didn’t go to a party at the mansion or a panto thingey and met him there?

Ardern replied:

Nope. He appeared via film footage the nights I was on stage. Just the good old Franklin Road Lights!

Ralston turns to Curran:

Thanks Jacinda, much appreciated. Now, where’s @clarecurranmp ?

Ok, I’ll come back tomorrow and see if @clarecurranmp has come clean on how many Dotcom meetings and what was discussed. Somehow doubt it.

That was at 5.06 pm yesterday (12 February).

Curran made a general statement on Twitter 1t 10.30 pm.

In my work I’ve met @kimdotcom 4 times, including at public events. In NZ it’s no crime to meet critics of the state.

So she hasn’t denied visiting him at his mansion nor denied phoning him.

It’s no crime of course. That sounds very defensive. But it is looking increasingly obvious that being connected to Dotcom is politically unwise.

Curran’s liaisons with Dotcom are interesting. They do have issues on the Internet and communications in common. And of course in defeating the current Government in this year’s election.

Doubts have been expressed about Curran’s position with Labour.

She is obviously out of favour with David Cunliffe. Curran had openly campaigned against Cunliffe becoming leader and Curran was involved in an incident with Cunliffe’s wife at the Dunedin leadership forum.

And she was also involved in another controversy during the leadership contest:

Ms Curran caused some controversy last week with an ill-timed comment on Twitter accusing opponents of Mr Robertson playing the ”gay card”.

Whether that comes back to bite her will be known early this week.

It did come back to bite. Cunliffe dropped Curran from 18 to 29 (out of 34) in the MP pecking order when he took over the Labour leadership.

Since then there have been suggestions that Curran could be dropped by Labour from her Dunedin South electorate. Audrey Young in NZ Herald/ODT on 18 December 2013.

Challenges of sitting electorate MPs are rare in most parties but Prime Minister John Key ousted sitting MP Brian Neeson in 2002 to get his candidacy for Helensville, and Judith Collins ousted Warren Kyd in Clevedon.

There has been speculation that National’s John Hayes could face a challenge in Wairarapa and that Labour’s Clare Curran could face a challenge in Dunedin South.

I have heard other suggestions of this possibility from Labour Party members. From Curran’s position in doubt in Dunedin South? posted on 27 December:

An interesting Public Notice on the ODT on Tuesday regarding Clare Curran’s electorate:

“The New Zealand Labour Party wishes to advise all Electorate, Branch and Affiliated members that nominations for the Dunedin South constituency remain open. The closing date has been amended and is now February 28 2014.”

This may be normal process, or it may be an indication that rumours of attempts to replace Curran within Labour have some substance.

Curran ousted sitting MP David Benson-Pope from candidacy in Dunedin South for the 2008 election.

She was demoted by David Cunliffe to 30 out of the 34 current Labour MPs.

An interesting comment on this from a Labour member from Dunedin:

 No one, including myself, has put in a selection nomination against Clare Curran that I know of. More I cannot say at this stage :twisted:

Interesting, especially the last bit.

I haven’t heard anything about this since.

Has Curran been sounding out the possibility of jumping from the Labour waka and standing for Dotcom’s Internet Party? Or is she looking for alternative options if she is pushed overboard by Labour?

Dotcom’s statement that he would “self-destruct” the Internet Party if it looked like missing the 5% mark must be discouraging for anyone considering standing for his party. It would be high risk with a likelihood of being career destroying. Dotcom has a growing reputation as a political wrecking ball.

I’ve asked her about this on Twitter this morning. I’ll update this post if I get a response.

David Clark on Otago gas exploration – yeah, nah

Dunedin City Councillor Andrew Whiley has taken a swipe at Dunedin North MP David Clark about his lack of support for gas exploration and potential business and jobs for Dunedin. ODT reports:

A Dunedin city councillor has accused Dunedin North Labour MP David Clark of putting votes before jobs as the debate over exploratory gas drilling heats up in the South.

The comments by Cr Andrew Whiley – a vocal supporter of gas exploration off the Otago coast – were made in his new role as spokesman for the gas supporters’ group Pro Gas Otago.

However, Mr Clark hit back yesterday, saying Cr Whiley’s summary was ”simplistic” and his group appeared to be ”parroting the National Party position”.

That sounds like Clark is putting politics before the people of Dunedin.

In his statement, released on Thursday afternoon, Cr Whiley said a member of the group had met Dunedin-based National MP Michael Woodhouse and Mr Clark to discuss Shell and Anadarko’s exploratory drilling plans.

Mr Woodhouse was ”very supportive” of the industry’s arrival but the group was ”disappointed” by Mr Clark, who ”felt that supporting this industry may cost him votes”, Cr Whiley said.

Cr Whiley yesterday, confirmed he had not been at the meeting, but stood by the comments anyway and urged Mr Clark to do more to support exploratory drilling.

”My view is: the same people who were campaigning for Hillside … should be in support of the jobs that could be created by exploration off the coast.

Publicly Clark (and Dunedin South colleague Clare Curran) has until now been mute on exploration. He responded to ODT:

Mr Clark said it was ”not true” he was putting votes before jobs.

”I did say that North Dunedin people are concerned about environmental outcomes and therefore wouldn’t be willing to support unregulated mining without appropriate checks and balances.

”I think the Dunedin North electorate is sophisticated enough to understand that appropriate development of mineral resources can support decent incomes, but are not willing to support mineral development at any cost.”

His view was consistent with that of Labour leader David Cunliffe, who earlier this week said the party supported deep sea oil and gas exploration ”in principle”, but would toughen environmental protection laws.

That sounds like fence sitting “yeah, nah” uncertainty. He doesn’t mention gas here, just mining and minerals but states something largely irrelevant – “wouldn’t be willing to support unregulated mining” -  mining and drilling are regulated, the question is how regulated it should be.

Clark has not expressed any support for oil exploration business or jobs in Dunedin here, he has vaguely parroted Labour’s vague position and attacked National.

This looks like party politics and elections first, Dunedin and jobs second, or third, or yeah, nah.

The prospects of Dunedin MPs working together for the best interests of the city and region don’t look good.

 

Curran’s position in doubt in Dunedin South?

An interesting Public Notice on the ODT on Tuesday regarding Clare Curran’s electorate:

“The New Zealand Labour Party wishes to advise all Electorate, Branch and Affiliated members that nominations for the Dunedin South constituency remain open. The closing date has been amended and is now February 28 2014.”

This may be normal process, or it may be an indication that rumours of attempts to replace Curran within Labour have some substance.

Curran ousted sitting MP David Benson-Pope from candidacy in Dunedin South for the 2008 election.

She was demoted by David Cunliffe to 30 out of the 34 current Labour MPs.

UPDATE: An interesting comment on this from a Labour member from Dunedin:

 No one, including myself, has put in a selection nomination against Clare Curran that I know of. More I cannot say at this stage :twisted:

Interesting, especially the last bit.

DSC07965

Clark and Curran backing Robertson

Dunedin MPs David Clark and Clare Curran have announced they will back Grant Robertson in Labour’s leadership contest.

The support isn’t a surprise, but the timing is very curious, on the eve of the leaders’ roadshow hitting Dunedin.

The ODT reports that Clark, Curran name their man:

Home town favourite Grant Robertson received a boost yesterday in his quest to become Labour Party leader, with support coming from Dunedin MPs Clare Curran and David Clark.

The Labour leader road show is in Dunedin tomorrow in familiar territory for Mr Robertson – it will be held at the King’s and Queen’s Performing Arts Centre.

Mr Robertson is a former head boy of King’s High School.

So Robertson would probably be well supported by Labour members in Dunedin regardless of this signalling from local MPs.

There is some risk in doing this, especially for Clark he is seen as an up and comer, but there’s plenty of time for him to recover. Curran is expected to struggle to rise no matter who leads Labour.

Curran and Clark put out a statement indicating their backing of Robertson.

”We need a leader whose sense of social justice is instinctive, someone with sound judgement who gets it right first time. Grant Robertson is that man,” they said.

They told the Otago Daily Times Mr Robertson grew up in South Dunedin, one of the country’s high-density and lowest income suburbs.

”He understands what it’s like to struggle. He is a kind person and has a deep understanding what Labour can do for New Zealand.”

Dr Clark…

…said the leadership race was close and, initially, he wanted people to hear the candidates and make up their own minds.

”Members started asking me my opinion about who would be best … I think all can do the job but Grant is the one best placed to take on John Key and unify the party.”

Ms Curran…

…said the caucus vote was a significant part of the overall vote. She wrote to all her members this week and explained her preference.

She found people wanted her to stand up for what she believed.

”No-one will die wondering what I think. We have to be leaders and representatives of our community and electorate.

”People want to know we have strong opinions and I expect those opinions will be respected,” Ms Curran said.

So it might be a tough sell for Cunliffe and Jones tomorrow night.

But interestingly Shane Jones is the only one of the three who seems to have made a promise to Dunedin.

”This gum-digger is coming to meet the gold-miners. I love Dunedin. I have a few rellies down there.”

One of Mr Jones’ pledges to Otago was if he became a Labour prime minister, he would ensure government services would be relocated to Dunedin, even before his own province of Northland.

”If Treasury doesn’t like it, well, they can go to Blackball,” he said.

I asked all three whether they would be prepared to work more with local government to find local solutions. None replied.

I have repeated the question to them today.

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