When do Genter & Shaw make a pitch for Green Leadership?



It ain’t easy being Green

With Russel Norman blaming everyone else except his leadership for the Greens weak electoral performance,  the question  turns to how long it will be before the Right of the Greens launch a challenge for the leadership of the Party as the Greens try to out gallop the Labour Party to the centre.

The two candidates likely to challenge Russel and Metiria for the co-leadership position are Julie Anne Genter and Margaret Thatcher enthusiast, James Shaw. Russel’s late pitch in the election to try and suggest the Greens could work with National may have been an attempt to see any new challenge off, but it ended up looking confused.

Genter and Shaw are pragmatists and owe little allegiance to the Greens early socialist roots and represent a new generation who have no idealogical compass. Roll up to a Generation Next gig and appreciate just how centrist and middle class those pretensions really are.

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The Greens haven’t had a challenge internally for the heart and soul of the Party since Norman took out Sue Bradford and Nandor for the leadership so it will be interesting to see how the Greens next power struggle plays out. With members having so much say in the rankings, the nastiness that plagues Labour needs to be far more muted but reports from this years selection process highlighted the influence of the Wellington clique who favour Shaw.

With Andrew Little becoming an overnight asset, any decision by the Greens to step to the Centre would have to be carefully thought out.


  1. Both Genter and Shaw are hugely talented and belong to the next generation of Green leaders but I don’t think either is seriously considering a leadership challenge at this point. Both are way too inexperienced to start with. Genter became an MP in 2011 and Shaw just this year. I don’t think either of them wants to take on the role of Co-Leader yet. But along with Gareth Hughes they would all make great leaders. What could stymie them is the general demographic of the Green membership which was illustrated with Mojo Mathers leaping up a few numbers in the party list (which surprised and disappointed me) Mathers is the sort of person who irritates the hell out of mainstream New Zealanders.

    • She may irritate lots of people but to be honest, she has taken over some of Sue K’s genuine credbility. Her work for the disabled and animal welfare – and there are lots and lots of votes in that area, is excellent.

      • Regarding “the disabled and animal welfare – and there are lots and lots of votes in that area”, that may be true but I suspect that the Greens already have all those votes in the bag. There are a lot of votes to be lost among those who might vote Green but find this too PC by half.

  2. In my mind the greens are a bit to confrontational and dictatorial nowdays.

    Cast your mind back to the pre 2011 elections where the green Party wanted to force “energy saving bulbs and resisted showerheads to limit water flow?

    Energy saving bulbs are now found to cause pollution in home wiring systems with their Switched mode power supplies (SMPS) that cause electromagnetic fields inside the home walls and health problems.
    Russell and Metiria had carefully backed away from that type of intrusion into personal liberties during the last election and were largely rewarded with this.

    It is a clear fact we do not like being told what to do, as it is in our DNA as generations from early settlers both Maori and Pakeha.

    So now Key is broaching this hollowed ground of intrusion into our personal space with his surveillance technology are of spying on the population with help from the CIA.

    We expect the public enthusiasm to wage war against his poll popularity if the polls are not again rigged in his favour.

    So the issue of the Green Party should be left alone for now as Julie Anne Genter although a very polished and extremely attractive individual, is still a bit “green” (sorry for the pun) as a hardened politician to take on Key other than a friendly cup of tea yet.

    For instance she was in Gisborne pre election bantering about Auckland urban design, like walkways and car free inner city shpping arcades, while Gisborne business;s were crumbling with regional truck gridlock transport woes from our loss of rail, and we had to ask her to switch focus to our region not banter about Auckland’s transport urban woes.

    As for the other name mentioned as Genter’s running mate, who is that?

    I was a Green Party member way back in the early Helen Clark days and we had real hero’s like Rob Donald, Jeanette Fitzsimons, and Sue Kedgley, now they were statespersons we all looked up to then so we do have work ahead to foster that same trust and love of leaders, although Metiria did come close to that this election with her warmth & endearing mannerism.

    • I am quite critical of the Greens cos I feel that they have dropped the ball on some issues like activism. I don’t believe the new MP’s will be better only alot worse so I hope it does not come to that. Learn from Labour – leadership battles lose confidence. But I would like to say I totally agree the real heroes are Rob Donald, Jeanette Fitzsimons, and Sue Kedgley and I would like to say Sue Bradford too. Although possibly not so good at working with people she I believe got the most bills through as her time as an MP. Too me, that is fantastic – tangible RESULTS! She did more for family violence and poverty with the anti smacking and miraculously got it through even though it was not popular. She did something great for NZ. I admire Russel Norman for his stance in the past and activism but for some reason they are not coming out in results. I am critical cos I want Greens to succeed by getting their policies and ideas through not to suggest replacement. The last thing the Greens should do is go center.

      • Big thumbs up Greens for not supporting the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill! At least we have one party still in government with a brain and some level of critical thinking. I feel that there might be a much stronger move to the left next election and I guess it will be good on that election
        bill board

        Greens DO NOT support Warrentless searches and surveillance on Kiwis by the state!

  3. Idle speculation.

    The thing is, both Genter and Shaw are both well-disciplined party members who have demonstrated loyalty to the party hierarchy. We haven’t seen anything publically, or heard any rumblings privately, that there is anything but complete party loyalty from all players.

    Basically, Green party member know that there is a job to get done, and they are working together to do it.

    And they’ve hitched their wagons to the Greens train because of common values. That hardly shows an absence of an “ideological compass”.

  4. and Margaret Thatcher enthusiast, James Shaw

    I think that’s a bit rough if you’re basing that solely on his maiden speech. What I saw James Shaw doing in his maiden speech was a shrewd bit of persuasion on the validity of Climate Change science as had previously been expressed by Margaret Thatcher.

    In the battle for hearts and minds on the reality of climate change the psychologists are telling us that the individualists/hierarchists (the group that tend to deny climate change science – Cultural Cognition of Scientific Consensus (Section 2.1)) will really only be persuaded by voices from their group – much harder to dismiss as they share the same base values.

  5. Please do not mimic the MSM speculating on the inner workings of political parties. If there are interviews with the key players, great. Solid first hand information can be of use.

    We all have enough to do without the distraction of turning politics into gossip.

      • Booker, I can’t decided whether to downvote you for messing up your vote or upvote you for being honest. In any case I upvoted Dirk so he’s back above zero now.

    • But Bomber is basically a gossip columnist. It shows that he’s got his finger on the pulse.
      This post is particularly bad. Change a few names and it could be on Farrar’s garbage blog.

      • “Martyn a gossip columnist?”

        Are you joking Ovicula?

        Martyn put together the most compelling case with Dirty Politics engineering remember, – was that gossip?

        Way off the mark Ovicula, and just a cheap shot from a funny named blogger.

  6. I sincerely hope that Shaw and Genter don’t ever become the leaders, I don’t want to be a part of any party which they run and which I have been a member of for considerably longer than either of them. They are both on the right have no doubts about that. Shaw believes in the market, well good for him, but the market has badly failed the majority of Kiwis. I do think the ‘activist / demo’ side of the Greens has fallen right away, but there are still lots of us in there who are not believers of the free market and capitalism. I think Gareth Hughes has done really well and is much more likely to be a co-leader one day. I think Met and Russel both of whom are young, have done a good job. I thought the real problem at the election was Labour, making stupid statements, and not getting together with the Greens, and then there was Mana whose policies I like a lot and I know they took the risk to join with Dotcom and that failed, but their members seriously debated it – no party on the left has ever had that sort of money. And lets face it many of the policies put forward by Harre were far braver than those put forward by the Greens.

  7. Norman is a toxic bleating clown you are right in stating he has blamed everyone but himself, keep Meteria and if they have to have a co-leader try to find someone that wants the Greens to get back some of their grass roots, i dont know of one person that doesnt want Norman long gone from the party

  8. With Labour moving to the right, is there not now room for the Greens to be centre left as opposed to wacky left, promote their sensible green policies, and actually make up some ground with middle New Zealanders? Norman Gunston possibly needs a remake though.

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