A good win for Labour but…

Michael Wood and Labour had an emphatic win in the My Roskill by-election, but they still have a lot to do to turn around their Parliamentary performance.

They put in a lot of work and got a result Labour needed – but there was probably little doubt they would win, especially after Greens decided to not stand a candidate to help Labour, and National’s Parmjeet Parmar turned out to be an unimpressive candidate.

Wood has done a lot of groundwork before succeeding in getting in to Parliament, first standing for an electorate in 2002. His record:

  • 2002 stood in Pakuranga
  • 2005 stood in Pakuranga, 58 on the Labour list
    – he got about 9,5000 votes both times against Maurice Williamson
  • 2008 stood on the Labour list only, at 56
  • 2010 elected to the Puketapapa Local Board
  • 2011 stood in Botany by-election, lost to Jamie-Lee Ross
  • 2011 general election on the Labour list only at 32
  • 2014 stood in Epsom, 39 on the Labour list
  • 2016 elected in Mt Roskill by-election

So Wood has been persistent in seeking a seat in Parliament, and has now succeeded. He looks like he could be a good electorate MP. Time will tell how he goes in Parliament.

Wood is 36 so adds a youngish MP to the Labour caucus, replacing 63 year old Goff who was first elected in 1981, a year after Wood was born.

He doesn’t help Labour improve it’s gender balance, and doesn’t improve their ethnic representation, although Wood is now MP for an electorate with the highest number of overseas born residents (probably about half).

This win will gave Labour a boost of confidence after a bad week, with three polls at 23%, 28% and 29%, and a number of pundits writing off Labour’s chances for next year.

However Labour were buoyant after successes in the local body elections and that didn’t translate into better poll results or performance in Parliament.

With the by-election success Labour has something positive to end the year with, but they should do a lot of soul searching over the summer break if they want to look like realistic contenders next year.

This win won’t fix Andrew Little’s deficiencies as Labour leader, nor will it fix Labour’s baffling strategies.

Both Wood and Little will be interviewed on Q & A this morning.

Leave a comment

28 Comments

  1. artcroft

     /  4th December 2016

    Would have been interesting if Andrew Little had decided to contest this electorate. At this rate he seems destine to be the only party leader to never have won an election of any sort.

    Reply
  2. Patzcuaro

     /  4th December 2016

    Where does Wood sit in the Labour Party, on the left or right win Games?

    Reply
  3. Alan Wilkinson

     /  4th December 2016

    IMO National should be worried about its poor performance in by-elections – and in local government elections.

    There is a real issue there waiting to be uncovered.

    Reply
    • Patzcuaro

       /  4th December 2016

      Maybe voters just want to remind the National Party they can’t be taken for granted without upsetting the apple cart

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  4th December 2016

        Maybe, but if I was Key I would certainly be wanting to find out.

        Reply
    • That’s a puzzle. Are they deliberately no caring about by-elections?

      Their candidate selection in Northland was poor, as was their campaign.

      As Parmar had stood in Mt Roskill in 2014 she was the obvious candidate but she wasn’t great, and National sent very mixed messages, mainly that it wasn’t important to them. They probably already knew they have no chance of winning.

      Reply
      • Kevin

         /  4th December 2016

        The old Values party used to do badly in general elections but relatively well in local elections.

        Reply
  4. Corky

     /  4th December 2016

    Maybe I was still half asleep…but I’m sure I heard only 17% of the eligible voters voted. If that’s true, this is no win for Labour.

    Reply
    • Patzcuaro

       /  4th December 2016

      It’s better than a loss!

      Reply
      • Corky

         /  4th December 2016

        Too true…..but for Labour to do well in the general election they will need all hands on deck.
        Seems many potential Labour supporters still prefer beer, drugs and rooting to voting. Can’t say I blame them.

        Reply
        • So what do National voters prefer to voting?

          In 2014 National got 14,275 votes in Mt Roskill, Parmar got 10,546 votes, and in the by-election she got 4,652.

          Reply
          • Corky

             /  4th December 2016

            It doesn’t matter what National got,or didn’t get. When it comes to the crunch at general election time they are more likely to turn out. Labour has the problem of a huge underclass of voters who should be voting for them…if they knew what voting was.

            I hope I’m not giving the impression of sour grapes here. I’d have just as much fun if Labour won the general election, It wouldn’t even last one term.

            However, now you understand my reasoning for wanting an early election.

            Reply
            • Key has said a number of times that someone calling an early election for political strategy purposes is likely to get punished by the voters – as it should be.

            • Corky

               /  4th December 2016

              Yes, that may be right. I don’t know. But what I do know is we have a tired National government with an ageing leader who’s starting to lose a little of his charisma. National are in no shape to handle a major scandal or change in economic fortunes. If such should happen, National would probably, at best, be a puppet with Winston pulling the strings. Key is a fool in my opinion for not bolting early. Everything is in his favour at the moment. And that is phenomenal. Why piss such an advantage against the wall, and risk becoming New Zeland’s version of Hillary Clinton?

          • not voting !

            Reply
    • It was a big win for Labour.

      It was more like 37% voted, most of them for Wood. The way democracy works it was a resounding win.

      Reply
  5. artcroft

     /  4th December 2016

    Looks like Audrey Young spent the night with the liquor cabinet as she writes
    “The Labour leader has described the win as “a bloody nose for National”. It is more like a bloody nose, a black eye and broken jaw.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11759981

    Perhaps she’s trying satire as a new post-journalism career. 🙂

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  4th December 2016

      A by-election such as this is all about the candidates with the party meaning very little – NZL First for example is hardly going to get the most party votes in Northland come general election time. Much ado about nothing – but when you are desperate for any good news Little has to grasp at something.

      Reply
  6. If Labour had lost Little would have had to go, i don’t really see how this is a bloody nose for National. Yes they perhaps could have won, but they can lose Mt Roskill in 2017 with no worries.

    Reply
  7. Blazer

     /  4th December 2016

    A wins a win,its a positive,despite the spinning to turn it into a negative….by the usual suspects.

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  4th December 2016

      The fact that the winning back of an electorate seat they have always had is seen as a major ‘positive’ by Little shows you how far Labour have declined since the great lurch to the far left.

      Reply
    • artcroft

       /  4th December 2016

      Exactly! 2008, 2011, 2014 and 2017 all big positive wins to National despite your spinning it to the negative Blazer.

      Reply
    • Corky

       /  4th December 2016

      Easy, son.

      Reply
  8. PDB

     /  4th December 2016

    The good thing is Little remains leader & Labour wrongly start to believe they are again in the hunt for election 2017 – can only end in further tears for the left.

    Michael Wood goes full retard in thinking he has just been elected PM: “Michael Wood says it’s “time to build first-world public transport in Auckland”. He pledges to invest in police and give “everyone in our community a stake and a bit of hope in the future”.

    Reply
  9. Congratulations Blazer on a success for the LEFT at last. The photo shows Michael to be almost a clone of Goff, complete with toothy grin. How can a vote down from 8,000 majority to 6,500 be interpreted as a landslide win? Still a win is a win and to the victor goes the spoils.

    Reply

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