National (-Key) for Crone

Vic Crone’s Auckland mayoralty bid has had obvious backing from a political party, and her National crew were out in force for the launch of her mayoral campaign (I thought she launched months ago but that’s what last night’s event was called) .

National minus John Key of course. And minus Bill English, who has a candidate to promote in Wellington.

Tim Murphy reports at Politik:

The National Party turned out in force last night for the launch of ‘independent’ Victoria Crone’s Auckland mayoral campaign.

… last night looked like Crone had finally got the formal approval of the National Party.

She was Introduced by National MPs Mark Mitchell and Alfred Ngaro and with a video exhortation from former Prime Minister Dame Jenny Shipley, Crone’s big night was an emphatic coming together of the centre-right.

Speakers from both the Communities and Residents (C&R) and Auckland Future blocs spoke in her favour. 

Government ministers Nikki Kaye, Maggie Barry and Paul Goldsmith were joined in the 130 strong crowd by National Party president Peter Goodfellow, the current Auckland regional chair, Andrew Hunt and the two immediate past chairs Alastair Bell and Alan Towers.

Crone played up her links to the National-led government.  “I have been building on my existing relationships with the government and how do we partner together. I worry about a 30-year politician who has been boxing out of the red ring….”

With three weeks to go before three weeks of postal voting opens, the right’s anointed one declared: “This thing is winnable. Let’s not let a leader from yesterday cruise into the mayoralty of Auckland.”

There was one notable absentee:

But missing from the launch was John Key who has maintained a refusal to endorse Crone arguing that as Prime Minister he will have to work with whoever wins the Mayoral race.  

That seems a bit quaint.

Key has pretty much praised Phil Goff without endorsing him, but he also let a bit out about his likely actions last year.

Newshub: Key: I could work with ‘Mayor Goff’

Prime Minister John Key says he would be happy to work with Phil Goff as Auckland Mayor, should the veteran Labour MP throw his hat in the ring and win.

This morning on the same show Mr Key didn’t give Mr Goff his endorsement, but had praise for his former Prime Ministerial opponent’s skills and experience.

“I don’t mind the guy.”

But…

Mr Key says he won’t be giving any candidates his official endorsement, but may work behind the scenes to give whoever is standing on the right a fighting chance.

“Last time I went to a few fundraisers for John Banks – so privately I’ll do some things where there are people around, and people could have worked it out. But we won’t actually ultimately go out and say ‘it’s this candidate’ or ‘that candidate’.”

Key may work behind the scenes for Crone but the National Party is openly virtually endorsing her campaign.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Can anyone from Auckland say whether Crone’s campaign is getting anywhere close to seriously challenging Goff? Or is this mayoral contest another foregone conclusion?

    Reply
  2. Pete Kane

     /  1st September 2016

    As was said by several here, at the opening of this round, Party politics in Local Bodies cuts both ways. Not least the internal bickering’s we are seeing in Auckland and Wellington.
    Eg. “Hey, National Party MPs: Never hug a corpse”
    http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2016/09/hey-national-party-mps-never-hug-a-corpse/

    Reply

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