The media and pundit obsession with trying to pressure Labour into promoting Jacinda Ardern to deputy leader continued yesterday.
This is despite the reality that most people don’t know who deputy leaders are and don’t care.
It seems to be a sign of the growing obsession with promoting celebrity politics – Ardern is better known for her cultivating of the celebrity circuit than for her political accomplishments.
Sure she won the Mt Albert by-election, but that was in a safe Labour seat against no opposition, and having moved there after three failed attempts to win in two other electorates.
Last week Bryce Edwards virtually demanded a deputy leadership change this week if Ardern won in Mt Albert.
He followed up yesterday with a round up of old and new items from activists (who \used to be journalists) and pundits promoting his agenda – Political Roundup: How long can it be before Labour elevate Jacinda Ardern to deputy?
Edwards included just one alternate view:
One commentator disputes the need to make Ardern the deputy. Russell Brown sarcastically says “of course what Labour needs in election year is yet another leadership shakeup” – see: Mt Albert: Cooperating, competing and carpooling.
I posted King of the deputy castle, media dirty rascals yesterday morning but that was probably a bit too critical of his activism to rate a mention. There has been more media activism to promote Ardern into the deputy headlines.
This is all more a symptom of journalists and pundits who want to be political players and movers and shakers rather than being reporters and analysts.
Annette King seems to have quietly done a good job holding the Labour caucus together and protecting Andrew Little’s back. As a deputy is supposed to do. It doesn’t make sense to throw a spanner in the works there with six months until the election.
Ardern has a new job to do in Auckland, she needs to establish herself in an electorate for the first time, and also needs to prepare herself for the election.
It makes no sense to me to give her another new job which will tie her more to Wellington and bury her in the party machine.
And I’m sure Little doesn’t want a deputy who attracts all the media attention.
Who cares who is deputy leader of Labour? I think that most voters don’t give a toss. Those that do can read about Ardern in the Woman’s Weekly.
And perhaps some journalists could consider whether they are political reporters, or activists promoting their pet politicians.
And – would Ardern lipstick really help a Labour Party pig?