Kris Faafoi to stand on list only this year

RNZ: Labour MP for Mana Kris Faafoi says he will run as a list candidate at this year’s election

He said that the decision has been made with a heavy heart, but creates space for new talent to come through at the election to bolster the Labour team in Parliament.

It will give ‘space for new talent to come through’ as an electorate MP, but won’t ‘bolster the Labour team in Parliament’ – increase the number of Labour MPs – as that is determined by the party vote.

“The time has come to make intentions clear in terms of nominations, so that’s my intent, and I think it’ll be good for the party, and hopefully … good for the government too,” Faafoi said in a statement.

Whether this turns out to be good for the government or not will depend on the outcome of this year’s election.

It could be good for the party. To me it makes sense for senior MPs, especially ministers, to be full time in their portfolio and party jobs, with newer MPs learning the ropes in an electorate.

Actually it seems nuts that the Prime Minister, the Minister of Finance and others with large workloads still have to attend to electorate duties.

Bill English is I think the only person who has been Prime Minister as a list MP, but he had held an electorate for 24 years before going list only (this seemed a sensible move).

“What I’ll miss about being an electorate MP is the proximity to a community…

This is one of the positives of electorates. It gives constituents easy access to an MP, and also ensures an MP work with a whole community outside of their party interests.

MPs who have only ever been on the list tend to associate with their own crowd. This is a particular problem for parties like the Greens and NZ First who are wholly list MP parties. They can become embubbled.

Faafoi has been an electorate MP since 2010 when he won a by-election in Mana.

Prior to this he had been a journalist and political commentator, and had then been Labour leader Phil Goff’s chief press secretary. He had looked like a party plant in Mana, but despite this background he has turned out to be generally a respected and competent MP and minister.

He has had some hiccups recently, apologising to the Prime Minister last year over his involvement in a immigration application.

And has has just been checked by Cabinet after trying to rush through a merger of RNZ and TVNZ (before a business case had been made).  If he is still Minister of broadcasting next term he will have more time to do things like this properly.

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21 Comments

  1. Blazer

     /  10th February 2020

    taking the ‘safe’ option.
    Like Paula Bennett so called ‘westie chick’, but now a real housewife of the North Shore.

    Reply
  2. Geoffrey

     /  10th February 2020

    To me, “standing” and “running” imply some sort of territorial connotation. Being included on a list with the expectation of being appointed to serve a party in office has neither. A list MP is employed to do a job for the Party he represents. The idea that MPs are salaried employees with no accountability to the people is one that I find most unappealing

    Reply
    • duperez

       /  10th February 2020

      I can understand that. I also think that there is accountability through the collective of the party. Individual accountability is through the contribution to that.

      A list MP might be excellent and effective and make most outstanding contributions but be sunk by the perceived limitations of performance of elected members of the party. The ‘worst’ list MP might be ‘better’ than the best electorate MP.

      What constitutes accountability and what it means to individuals is an interesting field in itself.

      Reply
      • Geoffrey

         /  10th February 2020

        It is rather like the Peter Principle in action. Electorate MPs who perform well are promoted until they reach a level of incompetence; then they are sidelined on to the list and concentrate on drawing their pay.

        Reply
        • Duker

           /  10th February 2020

          List MPs still can have electorate offices and most do . Except for the lark ACT used before Hide became leader. All its List MPS were nominally based in Wellington and all had ‘electorate office’ in the same suburban office block connected to the ACT party. Naturally the staff had a lot of free time to do party work, although as we know from the National red head from the North Shore the ‘staff doing party work was in their own time’.
          Yeah right, but Im sure the Nats arent the only ones but they have the most electorates

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  10th February 2020

            Ill repeat again as the meme seems to be List MPs arent working in electorates they are, just they are called ‘list offices’
            https://www.parliament.nz/media/4752/out-of-parliament-offices-as-at-02-may-2018-pdf.pdf

            I would say Faafoi would be expected to open a list office , maybe the same place his existing electorate office is, once he becomes a list MP.
            The other angle , and most likely, is that some time after the next election he will resign from parliament for , say ‘a university position’. He has been an MP since 2010 and hes still young and the ’10 year itch is coming up’

            Reply
  3. David

     /  10th February 2020

    Lets dispel the trope that Faafoi is some sort of super competent go getter, he is not and there is little evidence that he is aside from not quite sorting out the awful exploitation of the poorest people by dodgy lenders and the hideous mobile trucks..the fact that he actually partially did something makes him a rising star amongst a cabinet of zero ability and a caucus of utter uselessness.
    As soon as he was given real responsibility and decision making he fell flat on his face with his dumb RNZ/TVNZ merger without having the brain power to put forward a business case, despite having worked in the media for a decade or so. Under his watch Concert is laying off staff and going to AM for gods sake so RNZ can start a youth station..why would be the question.
    Lets not mention the terrible immigration intervention which was an inappropriate shocker but looks mild when you have NZ First cabinet ministers.
    The guy is a mediocre non entity with zero achievements prior to parliament and not much in it. He is a nice guy and mates with journalists end of story.

    Reply
    • Duker

       /  10th February 2020

      RNZ isnt under his watch …it has its own Board so technically is a Qango and a law unto itself.
      As pointed out by me yesterday , plenty of options to get Concert in stereo and better quality then FM ( line of sight only) by the TV broadcast option ( which is digital) and a direct satellite feed

      Reply
    • duperez

       /  10th February 2020

      Wow! … not to mention he is in the Labour Party I guess.

      Let’s be honest, he could be exactly as he is, have done (or not done) exactly the same and have exactly the same history but be in the other team. And then he would be a gem! 😊

      Reply
      • Duker

         /  10th February 2020

        Yes we all are in awe of Truck Stop Paula’s achievements for herself , the country not so much

        Reply
  4. David

     /  10th February 2020

    Labour can ill afford to have any more senior MPs not as electorate MPs, if one looks at the electoral map Labour have very very few electorates outside of parts of the main centres and the result is little real connection with everyday NZers.
    Its a risk they end up completely disconnected as their remaining electorate MPs have the calibre of say Poto Williams. You need MPs with the firepower to tell a cabinet minister something is a dumb idea and will be viewed as such outside the bubble of 100 people based in the Wellington bureaucracy and or the woke parts of the press gallery.

    Reply
    • duperez

       /  10th February 2020

      What? MPs with the firepower to tell a cabinet minister something is a dumb idea are needed? Hell, in the White House having a different idea is treason and a sackable offence. Actually telling the head cherang or the close sycophants their idea is dumb is Capitol capital punishment territory. 🙃

      Reply
    • Blazer

       /  10th February 2020

      you are really aroused today David.
      Not sure why city dwellers are not ‘everyday’ NZ’ers.
      Where did you grow up David?

      Keepin it…real.

      Reply
      • David

         /  10th February 2020

        Too much caffeine. Didnt say city dwellers werent just saying that there are other NZers who vote too and if all of your MPs are urban or list based urban MPs with the odd token office they visit occasionally you could find you have only listened to one voice, a minority one at that.
        Grew up in a village in Hertfordshire then moved to London then here as a migrant.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  10th February 2020

          don’t drink coffee David.
          I understand your disdain for egalitarianism…now.

          A Raj Rover how thoroughly…’British’…what on earth would The Duke of Edinburgh ..say about that!

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  11th February 2020

            The development and factories are in UK, plus a new one in Slovakia. Whats so unusual about that. Toyota had a plant in Australia did that not make them japanese any more?

            Reply
  5. Blazer

     /  11th February 2020

    ‘“It looks as if it was put in by an Indian.”’
    ‘There’s a lot of your family in tonight.” (after looking at the name badge of the businessman Atul Patel at a palace reception for British Indians in 2009)’…Prince Philip…

    Reply

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