Labour Party Members should be furious at reviews findings


Let’s see The Standard use this image

Well, well, well…

Labour’s election review: What went wrong
Labour’s review panel has reported its findings back about the party’s election campaign and the reasons for the low 25 per cent result, identifying problems ranging from a failure to unite behind former leader David Cunliffe to resourcing and confusion over its “Vote Positive” slogan.

…Labour Party members should be incandescent with rage. THEIR choice for leader, David Cunliffe, was effectively betrayed by some in the Caucus who refused to accept the members decision and rather than show loyalty, did all they could to not unify behind his leadership.

There are those in Caucus who would prefer to be the winners of the losing team than lose control of the winning team. That some were active in allowing Cunliffe to fail means they were prepared to sit on their hands while Key won a 3rd term. There can be no greater betrayal. Well, the only greater betrayal would be using Slater or Lusk as advisers, and there are some who also did that.

It is a sad indictment on Labour that the first membership choice for Leader was ultimately betrayed by a jealous and spiteful Caucus. Let us all hope for the sake of NZ, that Andrew Little won’t suffer the same fate.

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      • IMP was not, and never will be, an ally of Labour. IMP was a failed attempt at political influence by a disgruntled multi-millionaire, assisted by the abject naivety of political ‘pundits’ and other fellow travellers, one that has thankfully now been consigned to the dustbin of history. Mana, likewise, has so little in common with today’s Labour Party that any thought of ‘cooperation’ is a joke. I greatly admire Hone for his principled stance of many issues, but he screwed up badly with IMP. He won’t make the same mistake again.

        • So let’s get this straight, my National Party friend… Millionaires funding National and ACT are ok.

          Millionaires funding small, left-wing parties was “a failed attempt at political influence by a disgruntled multi-millionaire, assisted by the abject naivety of political ‘pundits’ and other fellow travellers“?

          Have I sussed the “rules” accurately?

  1. Wouldn’t it have been better if Cunniliffe hadn’t challenged Shearer for the leadership? One he was in place, I thought the caucus had United behind him. But election review says otherwise.
    General public did not find him a credible leader. His comment about being sorry for being a man turned so many people off. While we understand why he said it, it was picked up by the media, out of context, and repeated often.
    Labour Volunteers who were door knocking often got feedback from constituents “like you, but not your leader”. Doesn’t this explain why so many split their vote, candidate Labour, party vote National?
    I was relieved when he stood down as leader, as he seemed to be bending to whatever media were accusing him of, possibly because of the “vote positive” slogan, refusing to attack, even when necessary.
    Signed , armchair critic

    • Firstly, it was not Cunliffe who challenged Shearer for the leadership. A no-confidence vote was being organised by Marian Street, and Shearer stepped down. Cunliffe only stood for the leadership after this. The fact that the caucus proved unable to influence the voting of the membership in that contest should have rung warning bells for them. But it seems it didn’t – it took a humiliating election loss for that.

      Secondly, it is extremely hard, if not impossible, to stand up to a sustained media attack if half your team is busy buddying up to them. For example, Winston Peters is regularly under media attack and he copes by fighting back. But his strategy would not be effective if the rest of NZ first gave the impression that they privately thought he was a bit of a dick. It would render his fight back ineffective.

    • People that split their votes left & right are idiots.

      I had thought that there was something fishy about that National took out the Party Vote, particularly in Chch East & the Maori electorates, where Labour got the canditate vote. I’m still refusing to believe there are that there that many idiots, preferring the something fishy theory.

      Martyn can someone investigate electorate boundary decisions. CHCH Central was doctored when Wagner first won it & further doctored at the last election.

      East Merivale & East Fendalton were added 6 years ago. Last election Richmond & Richmond North & some other parts were taken out that are Central CHCH, yet East Merivale & Fendalton were left in making a dog legged shaped electorate unrepresentative of the Cental suburbs that are clustered around the CBD.

      • Not only that a lot of the voting booths that were normally available weren’t this time around.

        It was obvious that a lot of the left leaning booths were missing this election.

        The number of voting booths were cut in half.

  2. So Labour grinches, you’re disloyalty to Cunliffe had a huge impact on why I didn’t vote for you. And you were trying to lay the blame for the election loss on the leader. Shame on you.

  3. Yep I was all set to vote Labour but just couldn’t give them my party vote after the vitriol within the party to David Cunliffe and the betrayal of Hone Harawira and the left of center parties. In addition the lack of understand on the MOT and their dismissal of corruption and dirty politics. I also feel the meh on the TPPA got me thinking they would sell their soul for the whiff of a trade deal while not having the nous to negotiate it to Kiwi benefit. I would love Labour to rise up and ‘cut the crap’ but again feel their sell out on 24 hour surveillance and their easy manipulation by National and MSM to actually change their own policies against Kiwi’s interests means they have not learnt as much as you would hope. Selling out is probably not the best way to go forward. Tony Blair’s Labour’s ‘third way’ went to the right too far and betrayed a nation (like NZ Labour) and has left a legacy of conservative party in power that has futher ripped the human rights and economic benefits out of the country (like NZ). Often you don’t need a crystal ball to predict the future – you just need to look at history. The constant fear of ‘terrorists’ and the legislation to take away everyone’s human rights is actually taking focus and resources and funding off more important issues that should be being addressed.

    • So vote Green, if you are suspicious of Labour’s intentions. Or even better, think again. These disingenuous posts, about how you would have voted Labour but didn’t, are rather tiresome. anyone who posts like this never had the slightest intention of voting Labour.

      The election has many causes, no doubt. It is also a shame that we will have to wait three more years at least to start to putting the country back on the right path. However all remedies are now irretrievably lost in the past, so here is what I suggest. Let’s stop bitching about this or that favourite guilty party, let’s learn what we can from the experience, let’s correct what we can, make connections where we can, correct settings without destroying our ultimate goals where necessary
      and then take full advantage of this opportunity to reflect.

      And by the way, only so much second-guessing of the leadership is useful. The call to support the temporary legislation about terrorism surveillance is a short term expedience; we have until next year to plan a more comprehensive restructuring concept. We should, in my opinion, simply accept that the current position was a judgement call on Andrew Little’s part and by no means a definitive sell-out.

      • I seem to remember Labour zealots making a similar speech in 2011 after Goffs defeat, You lot will never learn well maybe its only 25% of voters may never learn… yes there re many of us that walked away, in my case in 84.. in DC we saw a maybe this is the time we come back but we are once bitten twice shy and boy were we right… Not becaus e of DC but because of the 19 in caucus that would see him scaplped at any cost so long as it wasnt their own seat

  4. I agree, the membership should be outraged. The panel “four losers of the labour apocolypse” has delivered nothing useful. Cunliffee was not the members choice in a fairly democratic system ie 1 perosn, 1 vote – he was the members choice in a vote where the unions ultimatley made the call – just like with Little. Labour lost not because of caucus unity, but there was no clear and desirbale message to the electorate. The 25% they achieved is reflective of the popularity of their policy and vision for NZ.

    • @ Aaron .
      roger douglas . jenny shipely . ruth richardson . derek quigly . jim bolger . richard prebble . The list goes on .

      You want more names ? Or are those enough for you to go on with . What are you going to do with their names ? If you’re a mad bomber I’m sorry that I can’t supply you with their addresses .

  5. Re – ‘There are those in Caucus who would prefer to be the winners of the losing team than lose control of the winning team.’

    Do you mean – lose control of the losing team?

  6. I have only voted Labour twice in my life. Never again. My younger offspring have very, very uncertain lives ahead of them thanks to the NZ Labour Party and their selfish destructive neo liberalism. Nactional have made life here even more hopeless. With the lowered dairy payout ,lack of investment in the economy by government, underfunding of essential services, continued sacking of public servants and fast growing national debt, the future looks very grim indeed.

  7. Labour is just National Lite. The Rogernomes are still in there. Their policies are not for the average working class person. Their policies are for corporations.

    Cunniliffe outlined a return to Labours original ideology, and his early speeches as a new leader were well received. But his message was quickly watered down by the Rogernomes, and Labour voters saw this.

    Labour is not left wing anymore. The party which brought us neo-liberalism and a Milton Friedman style of “free markets” is still the same. And we know it. We were betrayed in 1984 with their shadow cabinet led by Roger Douglas and their far right agenda.

    I’ll never vote Labour again. I don’t trust them.

  8. Nah, Cunliffe was looking good at the start of his leadership when he was talking to his base about how things had changed after the GFC. The Labour party was buzzing, but then Cunliffe made a silly mistake, he produced policies aimed at the centre (Kiwi Assure and low taxes). Those policies silenced his base, nobody was talking about Cunliffe & Labour, and the Nats were free to go about their ‘attack & confuse’ strategy (attack Labour and confuse the electorate).
    Labour also failed with their strategy later on by turning into #TeamBigot (Winnie) rather than promoting anything progressive, but of course it was too late by then because the centrist policies had stunted Labour’s momentum.
    Fortunately for Labour (or more so National) most people thought it was KDC’s fault, but that is was just repeating Gower’s ham-fisted analysis…and so is blaming ‘unity’.
    Labour’s problem was that their base became uninterested in another leader who seemed to offer not much, again. Labour don’t need to be ‘radical’, but they do need to stop pitching rhetoric at their base and policies at the centre. Instead, they should pitch the rhetoric at the centre and policy at their base. This is basic shit that nobody in Labour seems to understand.
    Unfortunately Little doesn’t get it either. He’s betrayed his base and is giving more spying power to a dodgy PM. Did everyone notice how quiet Labour’s base went after Little backed more spying? The buzz deflated like it did with Cunliffe about a year ago.
    This is basic, basic strategy Labour. Chase the centre with policy and nobody will talk about you.
    It’s patronising to use rhetoric towards your base, but never give them the policy that will motivate them.
    Labour are in very grave danger once again because Little will have a lot of trouble getting any momentum back into Labour.

  9. Look, I was one of those who reluctantly decided that David Shearer just did not have the goods where the cut and thrust of politics went, nice guy, but being able to play Hotel California on his guitar didn’t really cut it in the chambers. Had he come across more confident I reckon a guitar playing surfer dude just may have been the perfect foil for Key.
    Anyway, I thought maybe Labour needed someone with a bit more mongrel in them to take the leadership and thought Cunliffe had that. So he was duly elected. Then he went to ground, he vanished, we heard almost nothing from him for ages.
    When we did, it became pretty clear that the bluff and blunder in parliament was a front and he came across as all chastising preacher every time he tucked his chin into his neck when speaking. I’m sorry, but he never, ever rang true once he had the leadership. I reckon caucus knew what they were talking about.
    As for Little, although I am not a fan of the way Labour chooses it’s leader, I think they may have got it right. He doesn’t seem to have a huge ego, he doesn’t seem to have a personal agenda to push and that may just be what is needed.
    Robertson, I felt a bit sorry for, but I do think that his sexuality would have been a polarizing force, you only have to read the other article today to know that there is still a lot of homophobia around. We are going to have to wait for a few years for that to be a non-issue, as most homophobes are older males.

    • I agree, he never rang true.
      He seemed to say what he thought people wanted to hear, was too cautious, too quick to backtrack.
      Policy was good tho

  10. I think between the msm and the caucus who didn’t support Cunliffe DC didn’t stand a chance. I am glad the review has found the latter to be the case. Those who didn’t fall in behind DC shame on you. You are well paid PUBLIC SERVANTS.

    A real shame. A good man, with a track record as a highly competent minister and brains ++++

  11. This caucus had better pick it’s socks up, because the unions and DC’s people want Little. I also want cooperation with Mana and that other party that runs electoral seat candidates to split the left electoral votes–which is even more, insidiously, Nat-serving overall.
    If there is no left coalition, we’re doomed to a dictatorship.

  12. It seems almost perverse that anyone wanting serious social change in the interests of the vast majority could care less what happens in the Labour Party. The two times that NZ capitalism has been up shit creek without a paddle – 1930s and 1980s – it was Labour which rode to the rescue.

    We don’t need a revived Labour Party, we need a new political movement, of, for, and by workers.

    Here’s a critical history of the LP by Daphna Whitmore and myself:

    A lot of people have forgotten the third Labour government. Where progressives mention it, it is usually to present it as very positive compared with the fourth Labour government. However, the third was in some important ways – especially on the economic level – a taste of what was to come in 1984:


  13. The problem is not betrayal, it is the system itself, and in this specific case, the person the system selected. Cunliffe was poison from the beginning. He made mistake after mistake, and his arrogance never allowed him to build bridges with his caucus colleagues. On the other hand, he was dealt an impossible hand. A selection process that foists an unpopular leader on a caucus by a membership that has never itself faced election, and that permits some people to vote 2 even 3 times, will keep Labour in opposition for years to come.

    • Actually Cunliffe did not make “mistake after mistake”. You’re simply parroting the right wing line. There have been plentry of stories written here outlining how Cunliffe was misrepresented by the MSM and in one case was deliberately set up by the Herald and Woddhouse’s office. The collusion between the Herald, right wing bloggers, and National Party was evidenced by Twitter chatter and timing of stories published.

      The info is all here:

      Other examples include the MSM’s misrepresentation of what Cunliffe stated at a Women’s Refuge conference ( and matters as silly as criticising Cunliffe for the colour of his scarf, FFS!

      Then again, you’re not here to debate issues are you, Nehemia. You’re here to spread right wing mis-information, and outright lies. The only question is, are you here of your own volition or are you a National Party staffer, tax payer funded, to post your bullshit?

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