The Press reports:
Former Environment Canterbury (ECan) chairman Sir Kerry Burke has resigned from Left-leaning political group Christchurch 2021, but he denies the move is intended to clear the way for an independent run at the Christchurch mayoralty.
Burke said he would decide next month whether to run against Mayor Bob Parker in the October local body elections.
He said Christchurch 2021 had become caught up in “narrow partisan interests”, and he hoped a more diverse political group would be formed.
“This should not be seen as a calculated means of opening up a run for the mayoralty,” he said.
In his resignation statement, Burke said Christchurch 2021 had “lost the breadth of opinion it contained a decade ago” and was “increasingly intertwined with parliamentary agendas”.
I suspect what has happened is that Burke has found out that Jim Anderton will be announcing he is standing for the Mayoralty this week (before Monday). Anderton will be endorsed by the 2021 group (Labour/Progressive in drag) and hence Burke needs to have resigned before that happens.
Anderton will be a strong contender against Bob Parker. However if Burke stands also, that may split the centre-left vote and keep Parker as Mayor.