Barnett appointed Labour general secretary

July 19th, 2012 at 10:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

 The Party has appointed former Christchurch Central MP as its new general secretary. …

Labour president Moira Coatsworth said Flatt had been a very strong leader during challenging times, and left the party in a stronger financial position and in good health.

“Tim comes to this role with considerable experience as a political representative and manager of organisations, at a fascinating and exciting time in our history. He will be driving implementation of our Organisational Review, forging a campaign-ready Labour machine nationwide and spearheading our fundraising. All key tasks towards achieving Labour-led government from 2014,” she said.

This is a smart appointment by Labour. Tim is a very experienced political campaigner, and I suspect will do a good job at focusing the Labour organisation on campaigning.

I worked with him a bit on the civil unions and prostitution law reform bills, and he was a very effective campaigner. He had all 120 MPs categorised by how they might vote, and notes on who is best to approach each of them, and the arguments to use. He successfully got both law changes through, when other MPs might have failed.

It was a real mystery why Helen Clark never made him a Minister – he was obviously more capable than many who were.

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24 Responses to “Barnett appointed Labour general secretary”

  1. liarbors a joke (1,069 comments) says:

    Liarbor… regurgitating yesterdays has beens..what next , Darren Hughes as his office assistant?

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  2. backster (2,078 comments) says:

    It seems to me that it doesn’t matter what the organisation is if one homosexual gets near the top it is not long before the ruling cabal is dominated by them..The workingman poorly represented by the Unions is increasingly irrelevant to the Labour Party.

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  3. mikenmild (10,729 comments) says:

    Yes, because the most important thing to consider about a person is sexual orientation.

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  4. iMP (2,245 comments) says:

    I also worked closely with Timmy; but found his other agenda (a complete dedication to politicising gay-ness in UK and NZ) too narrow. His politics was ALWAYS about pushing homosexuality. Helen Clark and the Lab Caucus found him extreme (and were nervous about his Stonewall ideology) which is why he was sidelined and never made cabinet. Chris Carter was appointed (to NZ Govt & the UN) for extremely personal Clark-Carter reasons. Tim B’s appointment to Lab’s helm is therefore interesting in terms of defining the Labour party in 2012.

    Not the party of Clayton Cosgrove, Mike Moore, David Lange or Peter Tapsell one would have to say.

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  5. iMP (2,245 comments) says:

    milkenmaid, it works both ways, gay officials take power and ALL THEY BANG ON ABOUT is sexual orientation, ramming radical social legislation down our throats based on their sexual orientation.

    - Homosexual law Reform
    - Matrimonial Property Amendments
    - Civil Unions
    - Gay Marriage
    - Gay Adoption blah blah blah. All framed on the basis of sexual orientation.

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  6. BeaB (2,058 comments) says:

    They may have found their USP to distinguish them from the Greens.

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  7. George Patton (349 comments) says:

    Chris Flatt was an utter failure. Presided over Labour’s biggest loss. Oversaw operational processes so useless he left their website front door open so anyone, including right wing bloggers could stroll in and download every piece of data on their server. And if the party was in such good financial health, why did they let some of their more prominent international memberships lapse?

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  8. Manolo (13,370 comments) says:

    I predict a ginga Hughes comeback very soon. All power to the Rainbow Branch.

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  9. Paulus (2,502 comments) says:

    Understand Ginga seen back in Wellington recently.
    Will get high placing on Labour List for 2014.

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  10. Manolo (13,370 comments) says:

    Yes, because the most important thing to consider about a person is sexual orientation.

    mike, are you a member of Labour’s Rainbow Branch?

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  11. metcalph (1,362 comments) says:

    I thought Timmy didn’t get made Minister because of his concern for a troubled youth and his obliviousness to the perception that it caused?

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  12. tvb (4,207 comments) says:

    A capable guy but does not represent the old cloth cap labour. But that vote is in decline but is not extinct.

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  13. kowtow (7,629 comments) says:

    The worst of the middle classes claiming to represent the working classes,all the while agressively advancing a very narrow and unpopular agenda,agenda,agenda.

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  14. somewhatthoughtful (452 comments) says:

    “- Homosexual law Reform
    - Matrimonial Property Amendments
    - Civil Unions
    - Gay Marriage
    - Gay Adoption blah blah blah. All framed on the basis of sexual orientation.”

    That’s not a radical social agenda, that’s rational law change to remove discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation. That you think that it is a radical social agenda suggests more about the bigoted social agenda you’re trying to push on us than anything else.

    P.S I’m straight and when I commit to a long term partnership, I will get a civil union, not a marriage. I think marriage should be removed in favour of a civil union. If you want to have all the holy shit, your religion of choice is welcome to authorise it.

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  15. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    > the most important thing to consider about a person is sexual orientation.

    Certainly when Barnett chaired the Justice and Electoral Select Committee, sexual orientation counted for very little. The Committee oversaw an inquiry into the Peter Ellis case and came up with some weak recommendations. Barnett seemed to think the Ellis case would somehow take care of itself and justice would magically be done.

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  16. iMP (2,245 comments) says:

    Timmy of course is also responsible for legalizing Prostitution in NZ (by 1 abstention) which he pushed relentlessly. More sex-politics. Before he left Parl. he was pushing hate-speech legislation. More non-radical social change I guess Somewhat.

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  17. liarbors a joke (1,069 comments) says:

    It all bodes well for National in 2014 then…the rainbow mincers are still clearly in charge of liarbor..mainstream NZ dont want a bar of the screaming namby pambys.

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  18. kowtow (7,629 comments) says:

    It is a radical social agenda and there is not a general acceptance of it by electorates.They are controversial everywhere and generally pushed through parliaments without referenda,shows ,not a willingness by electorates but an agenda of the political classes.

    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/weekend/2012/0714/1224320029900.html

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  19. Paul Williams (876 comments) says:

    Wow a kiwiblog comments stream straight (sic) from the archives. Teh Gays are taking over and selling us blue collar workers out… I’d say grow up but half of you have but still can’t.

    I’ve had a few dealings with Tim and found him very thoughtful, constructive and largely self effacing. Cue more homophobic rantings I’m sure. Also, a lot of what Chris Flatt did – like any Gen Sec – is largely invisible. In fact, he did a hell of a lot of good work on party finances and administration i.e. his job.

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  20. Paul Williams (876 comments) says:

    Wow a thread from the kiwiblog archives, it’s Teh Gay, run for the hills. I’d say grow up but most of you have but still can’t.

    I’m pleased Tim got the gig. My few dealings with him have been positive. He’s constructive, intelligent and largely self effacing. Re Flatt, he did a lot of good work on administration and finances, work Gen Secs have to do (and os largely invisible) when in Opposition.

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  21. Geoff (10 comments) says:

    It’s worth remembering that Tim Barnett first became MP with a narrow margin in Christchurch Central but by the next election had a massive majority. You don’t get that in Christchurch Central without tireless advocacy and support for your constituents. I am surprised to see so much homophobia on this thread. I think some of you might like to reflect that while Tim Barnett was getting the state out of people’s personal lives, some of you seem to think that the state should take a more active role in people’s personal lives by saying who they should marry, who can and cannot see them in hospital, control how property is shared in a relationship. Guess we know who the real nanny statists are don’t we.

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  22. Geoff (10 comments) says:

    Oh and a big ups to David Farrar for giving credit where credit is due.

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  23. Paul Williams (876 comments) says:

    On both your posts, Geoff, well said

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  24. chiz (1,119 comments) says:

    It’s worth remembering that Tim Barnett first became MP with a narrow margin in Christchurch Central but by the next election had a massive majority. You don’t get that in Christchurch Central without tireless advocacy and support for your constituents.

    One of his “massive majorities” was due to the fact that he was standing against iMP whose entire campaign was “Ew! Yuck! He’s a poofter! Do you want one of those representing you?”. At one point he told the Chch Press that he was going to be speaking in the Square at Noon. The next day the Press on their front page had a photo of him and his audience – Murray McCully. It was a sunny day – and only one person showed up to listen to him. No idea why National selected him.

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