The Herald noted how many MPs were out campaigning in Mt Albert, who do not live in Auckland:
MPS IN MT ALBERT
The Herald saw at least 17 out-of-Auckland MPs on the campaign trail.
LABOUR HAD 12
Annette King, Darren Hughes, Maryan Street, Moana Mackey, Sue Moroney, Grant Robertson, Jacinda Ardern, Clare Curran, David Parker, Charles Chauvel, Grant Robertson and Clayton Cosgrove.
NATIONAL HAD THREE
John Carter, David Carter and Aaron Gilmore.
THE GREENS HAD TWO
Metiria Turei and Sue Kedgley.
They seem to have double counted Grant Robertson. Amazing how many Labour MPs all suddenly had parliamentary business in Auckland.
Professor Geddis said MPs’ campaigning was a grey area which was difficult to address.
One way was to be “incredibly specific” about what MPs could do – which would lead to opposing parties “bludgeoning” one another with allegations of breaches.
The other option was to accept that MPs were “political beasts” as much as they were public representatives.
Professor Geddis said MPs’ free travel could be suspended before general elections, but this would be more difficult for a byelection that took place alongside their routine work.
There is no easy answer. Even suspending travel in the period before a general election is problematic as Ministers still have Ministerial duties and would retain travel rights, so that would give the incumbent Government an advantage.Tags: Mt Albert