Fascinating news tonight that businessman John Palino has decided to step down from the Auckland Mayoralty race and instead run as a Councillor in the Franklin Ward…
On Saturday I attended a Mayoral debate hosted by the Howick Residents and Ratepayers with Mayoral candidate John Tamihere and current Mayor Phil Goff.
What I heard from Mr Goff at that meeting convinced me that he has no idea what is really happening in Auckland and that for him to continue in his current role would be a disaster for the people of Auckland.
He has presided over a city that is simply not coping with the challenges that we have in terms of public transport demands, traffic congestion, lack of infrastructure for housing developments and his oversight of the CCOs, where he has allowed unaccountable bureaucrats to run amok.
For some time I have been considering how I can best effect change to make a difference to this city. I have come to the conclusion that change is needed so drastically that my candidature for Mayor could prejudice the opportunity to make real change, so I am withdrawing from the Mayoral contest because I want to give John Tamihere the best possible chance of providing Auckland with the strong leadership it badly needs.
I believe I can make a useful contribution to the leadership of Auckland by standing in the Franklin Ward where the current Councillor, Deputy Mayor Bill Cashmore has sacrificed the interests of his electorate to prop up Mayor Goff’s administration.
…Palino gained 22 387 votes in the last Mayoralty election and his stepping down alongside Victoria Crone and no sign of John Banks means Tamihere could take all the right wing vote, centrist vote, some of the Left, large chunks of the West, some Māori vote and Pacifica vote.
If Goff’s team weren’t taking John seriously before, they should now.