Greens staff loss is Labour’s gain

One of Greens’ best communicators, Andrew Campbell, is moving to the top Government PR job in the prime Minister’s office.

Stuff: Prime Minister appoints new chief press secretary Andrew Campbell from the Green Party

The Prime Minister’s office has hired Andrew Campbell as its new chief press secretary.

Campbell is currently the chief strategist and communications director for the Green Party.

Campbell has worked for the Green Party for a number of years on and off, including as the chief of staff and communications director. He began his latest stint in December, and was a part of the Green Party’s negotiating team going into Government.

Campbell has also worked for NZ Rugby and teachers’ union NZEI.

Green Party co-leader James Shaw said it was a great appointment and Campbell was “one of the best in the business.”

“He and the Prime Minister have my full blessing. He’s an enormously talented strategic communications person,” Shaw said.

“I think he’ll make a fantastic difference in the PM’s office.”

I’m not sure that Shaw woukld have wanted to lose Campbell, but the best tend ot rise to the top, albeit within associated party circles with political staffing.

Staff have moved from Greens to labour before. Clint Smith of ‘Hey Clint’ fame made the staff switch from Greens to Labour  a few years ago, having previously moved from labour to the Greens.

Campbell joins Senior Press Secretary Leah Haines, who joined Labour when they took over late last year, She had previously been the Green chief press secretary before taking a break and also working for NZEI.

There seems to be a bit of Labour-Green churn. Back in 2016 Stuff: Green Party’s chief of staff becomes latest to resign from party

The Green Party’s chief of staff has announced his resignation – becoming the latest in a series of high-profile departures from the party.

Campbell had been with the Greens for nearly six years, and was promoted to chief of staff after James Shaw became the party’s new male co-leader in 2015.

Chief press secretary Leah Haines has also announced her resignation to spend more time with her family. She will leave after the party’s AGM in June.

David Farrar has copped some flack lately but deserves some credit: A smart appointment

This is a smart appointment. Campbell is one of the most talent operatives on the left in NZ politics. He is also likeable and able to work with diverse people. Generally has a good relationship with the press gallery which should help.

But he can’t help a bit of a dig.

Another former student president, which almost completes their takeover of Labour – Robertson, Hipkins, Kirton and now Campbell.

Whatever – with Campbell, Greens’ loss is Labour’s gain.

And it will no doubt help with communications between Labour and the Greens too.

Green staff turnover

Another significant change in Green party staffing today with the announcement that chief of staff Andrew Campbell is leaving.

While Campbell says that he had planned to leave after the 2014 election he stayed on longer when Russel Norman announced his retirement to assist with the leadership transition.

This sounds quite plausible, but it is the third significant staff member loss.

Stuff: Green Party’s chief of staff becomes latest to resign from party

The Green Party’s chief of staff has announced his resignation – becoming the latest in a series of high-profile departures from the party.

Campbell had been with the Greens for nearly six years, and was promoted to chief of staff after James Shaw became the party’s new male co-leader in 2015.

The party’s communications and policy director, David Cormack, resigned in March – just six months into the job.

Chief press secretary Leah Haines has also announced her resignation to spend more time with her family. She will leave after the party’s AGM in June.

Whatever the reasons and however coincidental the resignations this creates some challenges for the Greens as they work towards next year’s election.

In response to the announcement journalist Toby Manhire tweeted:

Wow. Huge loss.

A triple blow for the Greens at a time that they seem to be struggling to get any significant publicity or traction.