National kettle calling the pork barrelled

Steven Joyce played a significant part in National’s embarrassing result in the Northland by-election, which included a pork barrel promise to build ten bridges.

Now he is accusing Labour of pork barrel politics in the Mount Roskill by-election. He has a point, but so do those who accuse him of hypocrisy.

NZ Herald: National says Labour’s $680m Auckland light rail policy ‘pork barrel politics’

National’s Steven Joyce has accused Labour of panicking and “pork barrel” politics for its Mt Roskill byelection pledge to put $680 million into a light rail system for Auckland.

In an announcement linked to the Mt Roskill byelection on December 3, Labour leader Andrew Little released part of Labour’s transport policy for Auckland – $680m to help pay for the first stage of a light rail system from Wynyard Quarter to Mt Roskill.

Little, joined by Labour’s byelection candidate Michael Wood, set out Labour’s plan on Sunday for the Government to pay half of the $1.36b cost for light rail and Auckland Council the other half.

Joyce said the promise was “taking pork barrel politics to a whole new level”.
“Labour are hitting the panic button fairly early on,” Mr Joyce says. “Promising a $1.4 billion rail link between the electorate and the city looks very desperate.

It has echoes of last year’s Northland byelection, when National was accused of ”pork barrel” politics after Transport Minister Simon Bridges and its candidate Mark Osborne announced a promise to upgrade 10 one-way bridges in the region.

Joyce had overseen that campaign in which NZ First leader Winston Peters took the seat the National Party had long held.

So Joyce is being rather hypocritical.

Little dismissed Joyce’s criticism, saying the light rail policy was completely different to National’s policy to upgrade 10 bridges in Northland.

Labour’s policy to fund 1000 more Police had also been timed for the Mt Roskill by election and Little said it also proposed to re-open a community policing station in the electorate.

Little said no further major announcements were expected for the Mt Roskill by election. A policy announcement he was making on jobs at Labour’s annual conference next weekend would be national.

Meanwhile on the @PaulHenryShow

Labour’s @PhilTwyford insists the pledge for a light rail is about solving the city’s transport woes and not about playing politics.

Twyford is claiming that this isn’t playing politics:

. & announcing for Dom Rd!

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Yeah, right.

Politicians seem to be unaware or uncaring that porcine hypocrisy is likely to raise more cynicism than votes, as National found to their significant cost in Northland.

Labour electorate candidates chosen

Yesterday from the The Press: Lawyer Duncan Webb confirmed as Labour’s Christchurch Central candidate

Lawyer and academic Duncan Webb has been chosen as the Christchurch Central candidate for the Labour Party.

The party selected Webb on Saturday to challenge National MP Nicky Wagner, who has held the seat since 2011.

The electorate was once a Labour strong-hold, but was won comfortably by Wagner in 2014.

Christchurch Central election result 2014 :

  • Nicky Wagner (National) 15,34
  • Tony Milne (Labour) 12,926
  • David Moorhouse (Greens) 2,800
  • George Abraham (NZ First) 1,245
  • Michael Cooke (Conservative) 598
  • Toni Severin (ACT) 122
  • Lenis Davidson (Maori) 109
  • Robin Columbus (Democrats) 57

The party vote indicates that many Green and NZ First voters tactically voted for the Labour candidate, possibly with some Conservative voters backing Wagner:

  • National 15,301 (44.66%)
  • Labour 8,995 (26.25%
  • Greens 5,419 (15.82%)
  • NZ First 2,462 (7.19%
  • Conservative 1065 (3.11%

Webb said his campaign would begin immediately, and he would open an electorate office in the coming months.

“This election will be about the whole of Christchurch, seizing the opportunities for everyone in Christchurch and changing the way our city is represented in Wellington.”

Claire Trevett must not have seen that news because she reports: Labour Party selects Michael Wood to replace Phil Goff as Mt Roskill candidate

The Labour Party has selected its first election candidate, picking Michael Wood to take over from longstanding MP Phil Goff as its new Mt Roskill candidate.

Obviously it’s not their first candidate selection, but Wood was expected to walk into the Roskill candidacy, being Goff’s electorate chairman and Goff had already annointed him.

The selection was held early because of a possible by-election if Mr Goff wins the Auckland Mayoralty in October.

Andrew Little appeared to be fairly certain of Mr Goff’s success. He told the Herald after the launch that was a factor in selecting Wood early.

No reason was given for the selection of Webb.

Mount Roskill election result 2014:

  • Phil Goff (Labour) 18,637
  • Parmjeet Parmar (National) 10,546
  • Barry Coates (Greens) 1,682
  • Paul Davie (Conservative) 1,094
  • Mahesh Bindra (NZ First) 717

Parmjeet Parmar has indicated she wants to stand for National again. Going by the party vote the electorate race could tighten up somewhat, but Green tactical voting will help Wood.

  • Labour 12,086 (35.45%)
  • National 14,275 (41.87%)
  • Greens 3,279 (9.62%)
  • NZ First 1,805 (5.29%)
  • Conservative 1,240 (3.64%