Will it be the Hon Hekia Parata?

November 22nd, 2010 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Audrey Young writes at the Herald:

The strong performance of National candidate in the Mana byelection has boosted her chances of being promoted this week.

It certainly has not harmed it. And the fact the PM did not announced last week the new Minister night suggest he was waiting to see how Mana went.

Ms Parata, a former public policy and Treaty of Waitangi consultant, not only slashed Labour’s majority, but performed well under pressure and ran a strong team.

Counting against her is that she is a first-term MP. Her promotion ahead of the class of 2005 could put some noses out of joint.

The leading contenders in that pack are , the MP for Tukituki and chairman of the finance and expenditure select committee, and Chris Tremain, MP for Napier and the chief Government whip.

I think both Craig and Chris know that their ascension is a matter of when, not if, which would help molify them if Hekia jumps ahead of then. But having said that, 2010 is far preferable to 2012 in terms of ascension.

What may count against them this time is that if they are promoted, then there has to be a minor reshuffle. While Hekia can slip in and take over Pansy’s portfolios directly.

Selwyn MP , in the same cohort as Ms Parata, is also tipped for future promotion in a commerce or economic role.

Or Agriculture. Or Justice. Amy is multi-talented :-)

Mr Key could save a little money by appointing no one to the Cabinet and appointing another minister outside the Cabinet. He could make an even bigger saving by appointing no one at all and upsetting no one.

This is the only error in Audrey’s article. If the PM makes no appointment at all, this will in fact upset every single Backbencher. Reducing the size of the means more people competing for fewer places. A smaller is regarded by backbenchers with the same loathing as teacher unions performance pay.

Personally an Executive of 28 is larger than we need. However the time for change would have been when first forming the Government, rather than doing it by attrition.

But that would suggest Mrs Wong’s role was surplus to requirements in the first place.

Well …..

Mr Key is not seen as a slave to “political correctness”; he is not oblivious to gender and identity issues in National’s line-up either.

It is a factor, but not the sole or even the dominant factor.

The importance of the Mana byelection is that a promotion would be seen on the basis of talent, not tokenism

Yes, a promotion would be seen as gained on the basis of performance.

Making one appointment outside of the Cabinet to take over Mrs Wong’s two portfolios makes most sense, and of the contenders, Ms Parata’s sphere of interest is best suited to the vacancies.

We may find out later today who it is.

Talking of Mana, kudos must go to Phil Quinn who predicted a Faafoi win by just 1,000 votes.

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18 Responses to “Will it be the Hon Hekia Parata?”

  1. RRM (10,020 comments) says:

    Don’t be a Tory party cheerleader. Hekia Parata did not slash Labour’s majority, Matt McCarten and the Greens did ;-)

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  2. berend (1,716 comments) says:

    DFP: A smaller Ministry is regarded by backbenchers with the same loathing as teacher unions performance pay.

    Remember that the next time National does its lip service to smaller government. Or has it stopped even doing that? Just “more efficient government”?

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  3. BeaB (2,148 comments) says:

    RRM Matt McCarten got fewer than 900 votes! He wasn’t even a contender. Parata got 10 times that!
    Even with all his votes Kris did appallingly. Yes, he won but by the skin of his teeth.

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  4. markm (114 comments) says:

    RRM

    Did the Greens and Matt McCarten get 5000 votes?
    You must have been watching an alternative reality then.

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  5. SJR (5 comments) says:

    Well it’s not like Craig Foss or Chris Tremain are going to be Minister of Women’s Affairs, is it :P

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  6. kowtow (8,774 comments) says:

    ….an Executive of 28 is larger than we need……..struth!

    Winston Churchill’s Cabinet in May 1940 was 35 strong.

    That number to fight the war,run Britain,Scotland,the Colonies,India and Burma,liaise with the Dominions and even provide a Chancellor for The Duchy of Lancaster! and all the while keeping a National Coalition going.

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  7. malcolm (1,952 comments) says:

    Ms Parata, a former public policy and Treaty of Waitangi consultant..

    Says it all, really. It’s no wonder half the electorate didn’t bother to vote.

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  8. backster (2,184 comments) says:

    I wonder if Mr Quinn backed his judgement and what odds he got.?

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  9. Exclamation Mark (86 comments) says:

    How is it that this obviously very hard working woman isn’t already an MP through a favourable list placing and a fucking party-hoping buffoon like Tau Henere is?

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  10. cha (4,081 comments) says:

    Buffoon indeed, she’s ranked 36 on the list.

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  11. Manolo (14,065 comments) says:

    Instead of speculating on Parata’s promotion, isn’t this an ideal opportunity and time to get rid of Women’s Affairs?
    Didn’t Labour-lite promise less government?

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  12. tvb (4,512 comments) says:

    Parata is something significant in political terms. The others including Amy Adams are middle class and white, and is the main reason why I support National. But National under John Key is trying to broaden its appeal politically so that it is not just a one term government made up of the white middle class, but a multi-term Government. For that we need Paratas. I hope John Key promotes her.

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  13. Jinky (188 comments) says:

    What’s the big deal She Lost AGAIN !!! National will never have a better chance to win Mana. Good candidate with local appeal (lived in Titahi Bay for years) and has worked hard in the electorate. Split to left vote by Matt McA, and a parachuted in Labour candidate. Popular PM and unpopular opposition leader. What are the chances all those stars will line up again?

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  14. lastmanstanding (1,302 comments) says:

    kowtow hits the nail on the head.

    We need no more than 12 Minister and 12 Ministries. the prob;lem is we have duplication and waste of oxygen Ministries now.

    Combine the like for like and get some economies of scale. We are just 4 million people and we dont need a cast of thousands running then country.

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  15. Cactus Kate (551 comments) says:

    I agree with Manolo. Another appointment is not required.

    Promoting Parata would be tokenism at its finest. As is typical, centre-right finds a woman who appears prima facie to be educated and well-connected and married-connected, gets excited and promotes her without due diligence that a man would face. Worked with Pansy didn’t it once the blow-torch was applied?

    If you want a token woman for Women’s Affairs then Amy Adams is my choice. She is a first term MP as well but she would most likely sensibly close it down, which is what the portfolio deserves. Parata would just line up at the trough for more.

    Let us put her performance in the by-election into perspective. She still lost to possibly the worst Labour candidate in living memory.

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  16. ross (1,437 comments) says:

    Jinky,

    You areq quite right that National held all the aces in this by-election and still couldn’t get across the line. You failed to mention a low voter turnout which saw less than 55% of eligible voters vote. I suspect a lot of Labour voters stayed at home. Why a two-time loser is being hailed as a winner is beyond me…clearly it’s the taking part that counts :)

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  17. ross (1,437 comments) says:

    > Even with all his votes Kris did appallingly. Yes, he won but by the skin of his teeth

    What planet are you on? When Graham Kelly won the seat for the first time, he got 41% of the vote; Chris Faafoi got over 46% per cent. Even when Kelly was elected for a second time, his share of the vote was 47%, almost identical to Faafoi’s. Kelly of course was a well known union official. To say that Faafoi did “appallingly” shows you have no idea what you’re talking about.

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  18. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Ross, I’m sure a lot of Labour voters stayed at home. And National voters who have been disappointed with them. And floating voters that couldn’t decide or couldn’t be bothered. And many who never vote and never care about elections.

    You can play with numbers as much as you like, but the obvious outcomes are that National will have taken a boost from the outcome, they didn’t win the battle but they won most of the credit. And Labour will be relieved but embarrassed, they hung on the Mana seat but have demonstrably lost some political mana – considered Labour statements acknowledge this.

    The Labour spinners are working hard to paint over the egg on their face, but it’s still egg.

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