Labour activist Patrick Leyland blogged on Labour’s front bench and how it has only two women, comparing it to previous front benches. His conclusion was the number of women is much the same as it was in the past.
However the Women’s Vice-President of Labour, Kate Sutton, commented:
This is meaningless Patrick. Why don’t you have a look at the last time we didn’t have a woman at number 1 or 2? People can explain their way out of any stats but this front bench is worse for women full stop.
Now that is a damning comment from a party vice-president on their front bench.
Another activist notes:
This is a sad situation, that’s why many Labour women are so unhappy about this recently leadership selection process. It is important for the current leadership team to recognize this issue and reconcile with the general Labour Party membership.
One commenter effectively suggested that Jacinda Ardern should be moved from No 4 to No 3, ranking her ahead of Finance Spokesperson David Parker.
A contrary view is given by Meryn:
This is very interesting Patrick. As a woman I am more interested in the content of someone’s beliefs and their ability to sell, then deliver a progressive set of policies to the electorate rather than whether they have a penis or a vagina.
Indeed. I think diversity is useful, but must be secondary to beliefs and ability.
I think you’d be interested to know that many women in the party have directed their disappointment to the caucus. Not one has received a reply back yet.
This has obviously brought to the surface considerable underlying tensions.Tags: Kate Sutton, Labour, Patrick Leyland