David Cunliffe Skype interview on The Daily Blog Live Thursday


The Daily Blog In one of his first interviews since becoming leader of the Labour Party, David Cunliffe joins Daily Blog Editors Selwyn Manning and Martyn Bradbury to discuss what challenges New Zealand faces and what David Cunliffe’s solutions are to those challenges.


  1. “The 30min interview will revolve around what challenges NZ faces and what his solutions are to those challenges.”

    The major challenge this country, indeed all countries, have to face is how to make real cuts in our CO2 emissions.

    The Majuro Declaration recently signed up to by our current Prime Minister, John Key, explicitly called on all nations to take measures to cut back CO2 emissions.

    According to the Guardian, the declaration was open in its recognition of “the complete insufficiency of current efforts to address climate change.” The report also said the Pacific island nations are ready to phase down from carbon emissions entirely, and the Declaration asks larger nations to follow suit.

    The document reads: “The responsibility of all to act falls to every government, every company, every organization and every person with the capacity to do so, both individually and collectively.” (my emphasis. Jenny)

    CHUCK CHIANG The Vancouver Sun

    Despite signing up to the Majuro Declaration John Key, (and others), have said that practical solutions to cutting back CO2 emissions must be secondary to the economy and jobs.

    One recent practical case showed that the opposite is true.

    The cancellation of the Hauauru Ma Raki Project cost the loss of 1033 permanent jobs, in an area already hit by unemployment in the coal sector.

    In the spirit and the letter of the Majuro Declaration.
    Will you, Mr Cunliffe on taking office as Prime Minister move to put in place “the right policy settings” to remove the logjam that prevents this project, (and others like it), from proceeding, and which would give us the capacity us to shut down the Huntly Coal fired Power Station. Which is the sort of concrete action to “phase down” CO2 emissions that the Majuro Declaration calls for?

  2. The UN says our political leaders are failing us on climate change.


    International leaders are failing in their fight against global warming, one of the United Nations’ top climate officials says.

    Halldor Thorgeirsson today told journalists gathered at London’s Imperial College that world leaders weren’t working hard enough to prevent potentially catastrophic climate change.

    He appealed directly to the world’s voters to pressure their politicians into taking tougher action against the buildup of greenhouse gases.

    ”We are failing as an international community,” he said.

    ”We are not on track.”……

    ……Quizzed on the repeated failure of the international community to organize a global deal on greenhouse gases, he said that the politicians involved had to be held to account.

    ”This is a question that needs to be asked at the ballot box,” he said.

    ”This is a question that needs to be asked of leaders at all levels.”

    So what could and should our leaders here in New Zealand do?

    Sir Peter Gluckman the Prime Minister’s science advisor has said because of our relatively small green house gas emissions, (0.2% of the world’s total), the greatest thing that New Zealand can do to fight global climate change is set an example.

    For New Zealand is a small emitter by world standards – only emitting some 0.2% of global greenhouse gases. So anything we do as a nation will in itself have little impact on the climate – our impact will be symbolic, moral and political.

    Sir Peter Gluckman: with Dr David Wratt, Dr Alan Beedle, and the Rt. Hon. Simon Upton, of the Prime Minister’s Science Advisory Committee

    Today is Suffrage Day. We are small, but we are not inconsequential, when New Zealand became the first nation in the world to achieve universal sufferage this example swept the globe. We can do the same for climate change.

    Could New Zealand be the first country in the world to be, as Halldor Thorgeirsson puts it, “On track” in “taking tough action against the build up of Green house gases?

    Is David Cunliffe as head of the Labour Party and hopefully soon to be head of the government, prepared to put in place, what New Zealand Wind Energy Association chief executive Eric Pyle called “the policy settings” that could see the cancelled Hauauru Ma Raki project and others like it proceed?

    Could New Zealand become the first developed nation to generate all it’s electricity from renewables, as an example for the world?

    This is the question I would like to see asked of Labour leader David Cunliffe.

  3. Jeeesus ! I only just caught the last of that . What a breath of fresh air after however many years of jonky gas .
    And you are right David Cunliffe . I’ll try not to pre-judge . Thanks Bomber and Selwyn for bringing us that interview . Great , great stuff .

  4. I like this. Pragmatic solution based thought rather than ideological rhetoric. For the first time I have a little hope for 2014. But I still know that the 30 second sound byte still reigns supreme. I think a little more in-depth than the More FM listeners got or would ever expect

  5. Thank you David Cunliffe for fronting up to questions by Martyn and Selwyn, and thanks for the latter two to get this organised and shown here. We are getting a clearer picture, and it is partly reassuring, partly concerning.

    Yes, David is committed to “social democracy”, which means different things in differing countries, but at least he appears to stick more to the Scandinavian version, which is what I had at least hoped for. The German SPD has a top gear kind of “Shearer” (better spoken though) running for general elections and chancellor this coming weekend, I read, but they poll only between 25 and 30 (or just above) per cent.

    So let us hope for better polling here, and after Shearer here saw the light to step down, Cunliffe will likely push Labour above 35 per cent or more.

    I am reassured about the general economic and employment agenda, although details are short. Also does David seem to place much importance on addressing climate change issues.

    He is very tired, it seems, and that after only a few days in the job, and him mentioning caucus and front bench realignments, it is clear now, that caucus is a wild beast for him to deal with, hence his exhaustion. Not all is sorted, and having watched Parliament TV, I saw some sad, depressed and not happy faces, e.g. Shearer on a back bench seat, not happy at all.

    I hear that GST will stay as it is, and FTT (financial transaction tax) is met with scepticism. CCT (capital gains tax) is planned, but not that much else transpired. So the poor will continue to be faced with high GST on food and else, which will not ease the pressures. WFF is to be fine tuned, I hear, but a bit more for the bottom end recipients may lead to cuts at the middle class end, who will not be happy about it. I have no pity for many middle class people, as they have no pity for people like me though (on benefits). Of course the top tax rate needs to be reintroduced, and more else needs doing too.

    There was none of significance, if anything on “welfare”, and thus I gather, I am right in my suspicion that Labour will not reverse the draconian, punitive welfare reforms that National brought in. There was talk about policy being developed and David not being able to tell too much, and I understand that. But as a bottom end of society human being, as I am, I expected at least some reassurance for sick and disabled, to be treated fairly and be given means to survive decently, without biased work capability assessments and harassment by WINZ.

    That really disappoints me, and the intentions to review the GCSB legislation, a careful view of the TPPA and so forth give me little assurance that a future Labour led government will be good to me and others in my situation. Maybe I am not wanted, maybe society should just do away with people like me?

    So I am left right there, where I was before the Labour leadership contest, and I will know who to vote for and who not for.

    Thank you David Cunliffe and moderators, it helps to learn more!

  6. That was a pretty decent interview and all the questions were answered thoroughly and without obfuscation.

    Quite an oddity these days, and certainly not something you would see on TV1 or TV3.

  7. Superb. I can reveal that the adjective of choice and constant repetition for David now circulating in Tory heartland is “Dangerous”. Now I see why.

    They’re positively crapping themselves, brothers and sisters. Paint the town red and green from now until Christmas, and hammer the stake home.

  8. Damn good interview! Clear and concise answers. Thanks for asking the questions.

    The more I hear from Cunliffe the more optimistic I am.

Comments are closed.