Little’s big reshuffle

Andrew Little has played his caucus reshuffle cars well, with some risks (there’s always risks).

1. Andrew Little
Leader of the Opposition
Security and Intelligence

2. Annette King
Deputy Leader

Good move having King as deputy, keeps some continuity with a lot of experience and should help get the Caucus onside and supportive.

3. Grant Robertson

A big play. Robertson wanted a top job, this isn’t what he wanted but this is perhaps next best. It will be a real test of his ability. If he doesn’t measure up Little has a couple of ex Finance spokespeople sulking but in a year may be ready to perform.

4. Nanaia Mahuta
Maori Development

Reward/conciliation here. Mahuta needs to show she can perform far more visibly and effectively than she has so far.

5. Phil Twyford

Not sure about this one, maybe he’ll be good enough. There’s one way to find out.

6. Chris Hipkins
Shadow Leader of the House
Senior Whip
Early Childhood Education

A good promotion of new blood, Hipkins has to learn to lead and not work in the shadow of fellow henchmen.

7. Carmel Sepuloni
Social Development
Junior Whip

I have no idea how she will go with this sort of promotion and only just back in Parliament.

8. Kelvin Davis
Associate Justice (Sexual and Domestic Violence)
Associate Education (Maori Education)
Associate Regional Development

A good move. One Labour candidate/MP with fairly wide support and respect and he eliminated a pesky Mana left flank for Labour.

9. Jacinda Ardern
Small Business
Arts, Culture, Heritage

Nowhere near where she wanted (deputy to Robertson) but lucky to get a chance under Little, she’s been a bit lightweight. If she performs she could replace King in a year – is she being mentored for this?

10. David Clark
Economic Development
Associate Finance
Associate Health (Mental Health)

Maybe in his second term he realises that hard work is necessary and he’ll be prepared for serious debate.

11. Su’a William Sio
Pacific Island Affairs
Local Government
Associate Housing (South Auckland)
Interfaith Dialogue

Reward for PI support. I don’t know if he otherwise deserves it.

12. Iain Lees-Galloway

Could be part of the new wave but needs to improve.

13. Megan Woods
Climate Change

Some rate her but I haven’t seen it. Her demeanour in Parliament hasn’t impressed, too angry/snarky.

14. David Cunliffe
Regional Development
Tertiary Education
Research and Development
Science and Innovation
Associate Economic Development

A fair placement for him. He needs to prove he can work hard with a team.

15. David Parker
Trade and Export Growth
Shadow Attorney General
Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations

Also fair placement after his sulking in failure. He has to prove he wants to help the cause or drop out.

16. David Shearer
Foreign Affairs
Consumer Affairs

Seems to be good with Foreign Affairs but not so good with party affairs.

17. Phil Goff
Veterans’ Affairs
Auckland Issues
Ethnic Affairs

About here he should be, if he wants to put the effort it.


Trevor Mallard:
Assistant Speaker 
Internal Affairs (excluding Gambling)
Sport and Recreation
Animal Rights
Parliamentary Reform

He might be better with his Assistant Speaker role requiring a more responsible performance – if he can leave his dirty politics in the past.

Ruth Dyson
Senior Citizens
Disability Issues
Canterbury Earthquake Recovery

There for experience, not for future prospects.

Damien O’Connor
Primary Industries
Food Safety

Not likely to rise to greater heights.

Clayton Cosgrove
Building and Construction
Earthquake Commission
Associate Finance

Significant demotion deserved. He campaigned for electorate vote and blatantly ignored party responsibilities, and a fairly toxic brand that Labour needs to leave on the past.

Sue Moroney
Women’s Affairs
Associate Labour

She hasn’t been stellar but I don’t know why she’s been slid backwards so much. Mustn’t be seen as a future prospect.

Little has made some major changes. Labour needs major change.

Putting them on notice that  all positions are up for review in a year is smart – Little needs to change things but needs to not aggravate old and recent wounds too much as he gets himself established.

If the polls have recovered enough he will be able to assess things and then act decisively this time next year to prepare a credible team for the election in 2017.

Little has played his first hand with a good balance of old and new, carrot and stick. It’s up to all of them to step up.