When a tree falls in Labour’s New Lynn forest…

…does anyone hear anything?

In November after the Labour Party conference and David Cunliffe’s demotion his electorate committee laid a complaint with the Labour Council:

Statement by the New Lynn Labour Electorate Committee
November 21, 2012
The New Lynn Electorate Committee of the Labour Party, at a special meeting called today, voted unanimously to express its full confidence in its Member of Parliament David Cunliffe.   While acknowledging that this decision was within the prerogative of the party leader, the LEC noted David’s demotion with regret.
The LEC also resolved to raise with the New Zealand Council of the Labour Party concerns about recent public statements made by Labour’s Senior Whip, and the leaking of confidential caucus information by unnamed MPs following Tuesday’s emergency caucus meeting.
As these processes are now internal party matters we do not intend making further comment.

This refers to an attack by Chris Hipkins on Cunliffe.  One News quoted Hipkins:

“David Cunliffe has been working for some time now to destabilise the current leadership. He worked to destabilise the last leadership. And I think it’s time to call him out on that”.

If you want a refresher see this Standard post by Shearer staffer Mike Smith – Keystone coups Mark 2 – where he wrote off any chance of an outcome:

There may be a complaint made to the Party, although they haven’t decided yet, and they haven’t yet thought about what grounds there may be. Doesn’t sound that solid to me – I’m not sure they have a toe to stand on let alone a foot.

Since then there has been silence, apart from occasional queries I’ve seen on The Standard. There was another query today from Anne:

What was the outcome to the New Lynn LEC’s formal complaint to the Labour Council over the treatment meted out to David Cunliffe last year? Has there even been an outcome or has the Labour hierarchy chosen to ignore it?

Greg Presland (who had been electorate spokesperson in November) replied:

I saw it but I am not at liberty to respond : (

Silence in the New Lynn Labour forest.

It seems that the matters will remain private between the New Lynn electorate committee and the Labour Council. That’s not surprising, but it won’t do anything to mend much of the damage that’s been done within the party.

If fallen trees are left alone they will rot. And there are other party roots that feel rotten over this.

Mike Smith had also said:

As is often the case with these matters, there is a silver lining in the clouds – in fact it may be a gold lining. When Parliament meets next Tuesday, there won’t be any taunts from National about Labour’s leadership. What National most feared has come about; a Labour caucus unified, and David Shearer as leader. Roll on 2014.

It’s only 2013 but I don’t think National are quite quaking in their boots yet. Pretending all is well when it obviously isn’t won’t fool the voters forever. Not even for 18 months.

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1 Comment

  1. Steve W

     /  18th March 2013

    At this stage, I can’t see anyone in Labour rocking the boat. There are local body elections to win and a general election next year. The time for leadeship stouches is past….and anyone who does try to stir up such trouble would merely demonstrating how unfit they are for the Labour leadership….and for that reason it would get no backing….and thus almost certainly own’t happen.

    Caveat: If Shearer does something horrendous, all bets are off. ….but I can’t see that happening now. He’s been in the job for long enough to start getting the feel of it. Whethr voters like him or not is another thing. But all he has to do is be less objectionable than John Key…..who is becoming objectionable.


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