The Nation: Ardern and Davis

Jacinda Ardern, along with Kelvin Davis and Labour, continue to get the political spotlight. This morning they are on The Nation.

A poor start by Lisa Owen trying to get Ardern to commit to what she will do if Labour doesn’t get into Government. It is pointless peculating on what losing leaders will do, or what losing parties will do to their leaders.

With Kelvin Davis included there is a focus on Maori issues – Davis says the key ones are housing, education, health and P.

They won’t commit to specific policies yet.

They are working on policy priorities but ‘wait and see’. Ardern won’t commit on Little’s ‘promises’ on taxes.

She says there will be no lack of clarity, but they need the space to work things out.

Owen keeps banging on about tax rates. Ardern still won’t bite. She guarantees sticking within their fiscal responsibility commitment.

Lisa Owen tried a few tricks to get a headline out of Ardern but had some very odd lines, especially trying to get Ardern to say what % of vote would be a success.

Ardern was assertive and focussed, another very good performance, but hobbled by a lack of policies to confirm – ‘wait and see’.

She was right to only comment on what Labour could control, and not to comment on whether Turei should stay an MOP with the Greens.

Davis added strongly and assertively at times, especially on Maori issues, but did not overshadow Ardern.

There are signs of a formidable team being developed.

Lack of policy direction is an issue that has to be resolved quickly – some time must be allowed for the sudden change in leadership, but there is not much time available.

Overall another strong, smart and focussed showing from both Ardern and Davis. Add to that the breath of fresh air.

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57 Comments

  1. adamsmith1922

     /  August 5, 2017

    Pete are you sure you are being objective, is it possible that you have become captive to ‘time for a change’ mantras?

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  August 5, 2017

      Nah, he’s not, imo – he’s looking dispassiontely & reasonsbly objectively at the performance of this new Labour duo. They are not namby pambys & Jacinda has been showing consistently SHE refuses to be badgered by the media before she knows where she is yet going on issues.

      Lisa Owen is hopeless.

      Reply
      • Owen tried to put Ardern on the spot to create Newshub’s headline tonight but she was outclassed by Ardern.

        Reply
        • High Flying Duck

           /  August 5, 2017

          It’s hard to put someone on the spot when there is no substance to pin them on.
          That’s been Jacinda’s issue for 9 years in parliament. She speaks well, is confident but has had no serious policy wins to her name and zero hits on the government in her portfolios.
          She’ll be fantastic until there is actual policy to promote and substantive issues to defend.

          Reply
          • Blazer

             /  August 5, 2017

            Pretty unfair Duck…opposition is not the place to shine. She appears to have good instincts. Look forward to her debating dry Billy.

            Reply
            • High Flying Duck

               /  August 5, 2017

              Feel free to enlighten me on anything JA has done to warrant the unbridled optimism being heaped upon her other than the media being desperate for an angle?

    • Who is objective in an election campaign? You?

      I’m observing a phenomenon that National has to find a way of competing with.

      English never had any momentum, he just had incumbency inertia. He has done nothing to change that, and if he doesn’t the election could easily slip away from him.

      National seemed to have a strategy of letting Little lose the election.

      But the game has changed, and Ardern is expressing a determination to win the election.

      National have to do something or they will really struggle.

      Reply
      • MaureenW

         /  August 5, 2017

        Agree entirely regarding National – I commented yesterday that Bill’s leadership style feels like he’s keeping Key’s seat warm while he’s on holiday.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  August 5, 2017

          National should prepare and launch simultaneous attacks on Ardern and Davis by female and male Ministers respectively. English should stand above the fray. No rush for this. Better to do it well with good preparation.

          Reply
          • Attacking Ardern when she was promoted to deputy backfired on National. It will be a big risk if they try that again. Ardern is likely to try and appear above it, and if she manages to do that it will help her.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              They have to do it properly on policy not personality. She can’t dodge that.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              I’m really looking forward to the first decent stoush between Nikki & Jacinda, Al. There’s a score to settle there, as I recall. Frankly I am expecting fur to fly! 😬

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              Yep. Nikki needs to choose the battleground carefully.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              Won’t make any difference I’m afraid. Reckon she’ll be needing a visit to the vet, not Jacinda.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              Time will tell. An awful lot depends on the early polls. I presume the Nats are doing their own and will pick tactics accordingly.

          • PDB

             /  August 5, 2017

            Attack the Greens/Turei Alan, not Ardern – it is Labour’s massive weak point in any future govt and will cost them votes. National should take the high road on people breaking the law making Ardern look weak on such issues.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              I was assuming Turei will go this week. Of course you are right if she clings on.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              All Jacinda will have to is look puzzled and say she is getting on with making sure Labour wins the election. She is sure that Metz will do the right thing. And bingo, that’s that grenade batted back to Bennett.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              But the right thing is to resign which we are presuming Turei will not do. So that puts Jacinda’s ethics and/or honesty in question. As the continued MOU will demonstrate.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              Ok, Alan. Thinking more about it you guys probably have a point – but it’s not something she’d want to rush in & do. Waiting may just pay off yet.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              Exactly. Only if the polls look too good for Labour would it make sense to go early.

            • oldlaker

               /  August 5, 2017

              I’m not sure National can take the high road wth Turei… there’s the matter of Bill’s accommodation rort in 2009 and questions about Bennett that aren’t going away. I think that’s the reason senior Nats have been very muted in their criticisms so far.

      • adamsmith1922

         /  August 5, 2017

        Pete, no I am not objective at all. I regard the Greens as an excrescence to be erased from the body politic. As for Labour they are to all intents and purposes a bunch of latte swilling poseurs who like the Bourbon Kings leaned nothing and forgotten nothing. Ardern describes herself as Progressive, i.e. in reality I suspect she is a Venezuelan type socialist with a smoother veneer.

        I look at the world from a blue perspective with a liberal bent on social issues. I am Centre Right and proud of it.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  August 5, 2017

          Ardern describes herself as Progressive, i.e. in reality I suspect she is a Venezuelan type socialist with a smoother veneer.

          Don’t ask me why, I don’t know, just a feeling – but I think not. I think she’ll be very pragmatic, a la H1. I think she’ll learn on the job. Munro’s no raving socialist & he wouldn’t be doing her comms if she was, imo.

          No one in their right minds would be going down that path – with the poltitical, social & economic nightmare that country’s become.

          Reply
    • Corky

       /  August 5, 2017

      I think the donations and pledges of support for Labour since Andy stood down answers your question.

      It’s not a matter of asking about ‘time for a change mantras’ Its defining those changes that are happening NOW and what they mean.

      Reply
    • PDB

       /  August 5, 2017

      Unfortunately PG you like the ‘shiny and new’ – Gareth Morgan will feel gutted you have left him for a young girl…..

      Reply
      • I haven’t left anyone and I haven’t committed to anyone.

        But I think I am fairly representative of a lot of floating voters, the ones who play a big part in deciding elections.

        Suddenly there seems to be genuine choice between the two main parties, with the other parties less relevant.

        I have no idea who I might vote for, my vote is still up for grabs, but my primary options have changed substantially in the last week.

        English and National may step up and meet the challenge – but they can’t sleep walk.

        Ardern has to front up on policies, and not make any major mistakes.

        And quite a bit could depend on what the Greens do with their mess.

        But this election is now wide open. I’m open to the best offer.

        Reply
        • Corky

           /  August 5, 2017

          National is best, Pete. The paint work may need a wax, but boy is that chassis in good nick.

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  August 5, 2017

            The paint work may need a wax, but boy is that chassis in good nick

            😳

            Reply
            • Pete Kane

               /  August 5, 2017

              G

            • Pete Kane

               /  August 5, 2017

              Actually, I have a hunch that Paula may need the vest more than Gerry this time around, just quietly young Mr G.

              (Thanks PG)

        • adamsmith1922

           /  August 5, 2017

          Pete
          On the election being open I fully agree. I am of the view that some in National were thinking they could effectively cruise to victory. This was never the case in my view.

          Reply
  2. Anne Glen Eden

     /  August 5, 2017

    I continue to believe the media live in an alternative universe to the rest of us.

    Ardern and Davis did not look ‘special’. They looked, as could be expected, like they’ve got together at the last moment and have no idea how they’re going to go forward, apart from smiling a lot. The whole interview was about virtually nothing – no commitments to anything, the usual ‘fiscal responsibility’ which means they will change nothing, and they’ll have lots of policy which they know can’t be achieved but sound good to manipulate the easily led.

    Ardern is starting to look haggard already, if with the usual toothy grin, and frayed by hard-hitting journalistic questions. In essence, they have, potentially, a wish list which in some cases they know can’t be achieved and in others, they might do something about. Ardern isn’t committed to the leadership – or knows that she will be sacrificed readily by her own Party if she doesn’t get results. Why would she commit to being around in the future? Any Labour politician making such a commitment now just looks silly – they’re rolled at the drop of a hat.

    As for the issue of Turei, Ardern is good a splitting hairs. None of them have had any difficulty screaming for the resignations of National policitians – now she’s suddenly going to leave a potential MP self-confessedly guilty of theft and fraud, not to mention fudging her responsibility for the same, ‘to her own Party’ – apparently completely deserving of an MP position if the Greens say so.

    Labour’s hope is for a youth vote that likes Ardern’s looks, smile, youth, and ‘positivity’ – not to mention an unspecified, unrealistic, optimistic wish list, and a Maori vote on the basis of keeping Maori seats and some kind of magical 30% drop in criminality and recidivism – as if that wouldn’t have happened already if it could be easily achieved.

    Politics really has entered the realm of dishevelled fantasy.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  August 5, 2017

      Journalists are political activists who don’t want to face an election. Their aim in life is to persuade their audience to support their ideological beliefs by whatever means and opportunities come to hand. Young people don’t realise this. Older people do. It needs to be taught in schools.

      Reply
  3. artcroft

     /  August 5, 2017

    Jacinda has done well. I underestimated her. However if she wants to win this election she needs to move to the center and pick up votes from National. That would be hard with current factions in Labour. If she wants to keep the leadership and rebuild for 2020 she needs to pinch votes back from the Greens and NZF. That’s very doable and is my pick for the path she will take. Peter Dunn must be nervous in Ohariu. I bet the ex police guy has already got Jacinda’s face up all around the town.

    Reply
    • Corky

       /  August 5, 2017

      Arty, this weeks events show why you should always keep your gun well oiled. It’s fatal to go into a gunfight believing there’s no chance of you kissing the dust.

      Reply
    • Gezza

       /  August 5, 2017

      She WILL move to the centre, is my pick. Arty. She IS from the centre. And my bet is that this is why not much being said about which policies she’ll push.

      Kelvin is also wise choice – he’s going to bring back some of the Maori vote that was looking to me like it was heading elsewhere. And maybe garner some new votes as well.

      Reply
      • And Kelvin is also being used to target the ordinary working bloke demographic. He appeals to Maori, but he’s not to Maori to appeal to others as well. A smart choice.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  August 5, 2017

          Maybe. Will the working class like being led by a teacher and a politics intern?

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  August 5, 2017

            They will if they’ve still got a link to an MP from the union. And the intern I think will have a few surprises about her ability to pitch to different demographics. She’s handling a persistent media better that their last 3 leaders already.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              I guess most of the unionised workers are teachers and bureaucrats now so they will be fine with this. It’s the un-unionised workers who are more likely to decide their party has joined the latte set.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              Well they could always vote for Winston or TOP I guess. But, you know, early daze Al. Give em time – everything’s on the table, she’s been given a blank worksheet.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              Yep, Winston’s pitching for them. Doubt Gareth will get many. Some will just non-vote.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              Well, you know what I think of NON-VOTERS, Al.
              Especially if they’ve got a STUPID REASON ! 😠

      • adamsmith1922

         /  August 5, 2017

        Why do you maintain that Ardern is from the Centre? I am genuinely curious to know why you have that belief!

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  August 5, 2017

          Womens Weekly, House & Garden next I expect. Uni. Way she dresses. She sure ain’t no factory worker or sanitation engineer. Why do you think she’s not?

          Reply
          • High Flying Duck

             /  August 5, 2017

            She uses the term “comrades” far too often to be a centrist.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              I’m sure its just a ‘phase’ she’s going thru, H.
              I could be wrong about her, but let’s face it, it’s unlikely.
              I’m not wrong often. Just ask Al’s Mrs.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  August 5, 2017

              She just laughed and whistled “The Winner Takes It All”, G.

            • High Flying Duck

               /  August 5, 2017

              Well it will be nice when we see some actual policy from her so that we can move from hype to reality. and find out what she really is made of.
              She won’t win my vote either way because the people behind her haven’t changed at all, but if she shows she can debate policy intelligently it will be a pleasant surprise.

            • Gezza

               /  August 5, 2017

              Well if she fuks it up I wont be too scared to say! Just ask Al’s Mrs!

  4. David

     /  August 5, 2017

    Owen is a terrible interviewer, she has a long format taxpayer funded shot and she illicits very little of any substance in spite of that, ever, always looking for the gotcha as most immature press gallery journalists do.
    I have given up on the Nation and Q and A

    Reply
  5. Pete Kane

     /  August 5, 2017

    “….taxpayer funded shot…..” ??

    Reply
  1. Q+A – Ardern and Davis | Your NZ

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