Beyer says NZ not ready for a gay PM

August 25th, 2013 at 9:11 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Georgina Beyer, the world’s first transsexual mayor and MP, warns New Zealand is not ready for a prime minister and may be seeing a social conservative backlash.

With the Labour leadership up for grabs, it raises the question of whether , the gay deputy leader, could be elevated to head the party, making him a strong possibility for prime minister.

But Beyer, who was an MP for eight years until 2007, said Labour needed to be realistic.

“I don’t think we’re ready yet,” Beyer said. “It’s not because Grant isn’t capable, I think he’s very capable . . . but the stigma that rests over those of us who are out, proud and gay who get into public office becomes untenable because you never shake it off and you get pigeon-holed.”

I disagree. I think it is up to the MP how much they pigeon-hole themselves. There is a spectrum when it comes to gay and lesbian MPs. At one end of the spectrum you have MPs like Chris Carter and Georgina who were very much identity politicians whose persona was around being the first gay MP or the first transsexual MP.

At the other end of the spectrum are MPs like Chris Finlayson who is an MP who happens to be gay. He doesn’t believe his sexuality defines him as an MP, it is just part of who he is.

Grant Robertson is somewhere in between those two extremes. He does promote “gay causes” but has been careful not to let them define him. He is more at the “MP who is gay” end of the spectrum than “gay MP” end.

So I don’t think Grant’s sexuality would pigeon-hole him. It is not to say it will have no impact at all, but I think it is relatively minor.

Beyer said it was possible the debate over gay marriage, which became legal this month, had invigorated social conservatives, meaning New Zealand was less ready for a gay prime minister now than it was a year ago.

Actually I think the legalisation of gay marriage has helped Grant. If it remained illegal then he would be asked constantly as a party leader (if he won) whether he wants the right to marry. He would of course say yes, and the stories would focus on that, and that would pigeon hole him as being into politics for his own agenda, rather than the agenda of the wider group Labour aspires to represent.

John Tamihere, a former Labour MP turned radio presenter, said New Zealand could, in theory, accept a gay prime minister, but it would have to be someone whose sexuality was not core to their reason for entering politics.

Tamihere sums it up well.

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96 Responses to “Beyer says NZ not ready for a gay PM”

  1. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    Good post David. But I disagree this is about Robertson personally, as so much what his appointment will further SYMBOLIZE in the voter perception. Beyer and Tamihere are right. Discussed here…

    http://conzervative.wordpress.com/2013/08/25/is-nz-ready-for-first-gay-pm/

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  2. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    Being gay shouldn’t matter at all. Being an MP – how they act as an MP and what they promote as an MP – should be what’s important,

    Roberston doesn’t promote gay but obviously will have an interest in and empathy for gay issues. No problem there.

    Cunliffe doesn’t promote intellectualism although he’s often described as an intellectual.

    How they present overall as potential Prime Ministers should be the focus of attention. Picking one minor aspect of one of the two as a major is poor.

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  3. Andrew (82 comments) says:

    Q+A will release the results of a snap poll at 11am. This will show what eligible voters think, based on what they already know or have heard about the potential candidates (some of whom have already ruled themselves out of course).

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  4. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    The more this gets discussed, the more it helps Cunliffe become the leader. Damien O’Connor and Clayton Cosgrove are running a Gaggle Poll. Tamihere is front and back bummed-out (and probably going Gucci).

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  5. Keeping Stock (10,181 comments) says:

    Fair point about Robertson DPF; after all, who can ever forget Chris Carter moaning that people were picking on him because he was gay when in fact people were picking on him because he was a trougher with an inflated sense of self-importance.

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  6. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    If it was sooooo important to Labour that Hulun was the first ELECTED female PM (not actually true, as voters don’t vote for the premiership) then it is equally important to many voters (and ultimately Labour) that the PM is gay. It’s never “and/or” but “both/and.”

    Labour’s Party Secretary is already a well-known gay activist internationally. So both the Labour parliamentary wing and party wing is led by gay activist men. That is relevant to many voters (personally I don’t care). I’m opposed to labour anyway.

    Cunliffe’s clear benefit from all this, is that Robertson creates a simple tag that conservative voters can hang something on (Labour is lead by homosexual activists, in the tradition of Lange saying “National snuggles up to the bomb.”

    Politics is all about simplicity and catch phrases. Campbell Live and the rest of the MSM proves that.

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  7. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    Friedrich Engels, father of Marxist theory-

    “The modern individual family is founded on the open or concealed domestic slavery of the wife, and modern society is a mass composed of these individual families as its molecules.”

    Feminist author Robin Morgan 1970-

    “(marriage) a slavery-like practice. We can’t destroy the inequities between men and women until we destroy marriage.”

    Gay Liberation Front: Manifesto-

    “The oppression of gay people starts in the most basic unit of society, the family. Consisting of the man in charge, a slave as his wife, and their children on whom they force themselves as the ideal models. The very form of the family works against homosexuality.”

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  8. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    Pretty clear Reddy that the gay marriage thing has been more about forcing society to ‘accept’ homosexuality as mainstream and less to do with a deep and abiding commitment to monogamous marriage, love and support. The ‘openness’ of so-called gay marriages proves that.

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  9. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    “who can ever forget Chris Carter moaning that people were picking on him because he was gay when in fact people were picking on him because he was a trougher with an inflated sense of self-importance.”

    Yes, true, but Carter was also a homosexualist, whereas (for example) Chris Finlayson is not.

    Its important to make that distinction.

    I do not want a homosexualist as a PM, in fact I do not want them in parliament at all. As I do not want the Maori Party in parliament.

    Politicians who self identify by race or sexuality are no help to social cohesion and an homogeneous and productive and stable society. Especially so when their underlying intent is to attack and destroy the patriarchal family unit.

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  10. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Horrors. I agree with Georgina Beyer!
    I was talking to a life time Labour voting friend this week in his 60s and he said…”it can’t be Robertson… I know it’s not right but I can’t bring myself to vote for him”. A Robertson victory will drive a percentage of Labour voters like my friend to NZF and others to reconsider National

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  11. thedavincimode (6,590 comments) says:

    Russell

    I hadn’t appreciated that “homosexualism” is your defining point of difference. Is that why you call Chardonnayguy “Chutneychuteguy”? Or is it still because you are just a coward hiding behind a nom de plume?

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  12. Lucia Maria (2,239 comments) says:

    I hope Robertson does get the leadership, that way cementing in the minds of the voters that Labour understands nothing about the family and it’s struggles, and in that way accelerating the party’s demise.

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  13. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    I seriously think you should seek out psychiatric help Kevin.

    Your apparently overwhelming obsession with Redbaiter seems to have developed into something very weird.

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  14. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    What is it with these people. I don’t give a toss ( literally ) what sexual orientation anyone has. How consenting adults get their jollies is their business. But … So a transgender person thinks that we need to have a gay or transgender PM some day… Sure… Well I have short hair and shave everyday – I think nobody is a real PM unless they have short hair and shave everyday….

    For gods sake – I though we elected strong leaders as PM’s – when did it become a job of ticking the box for some special interest group. Gee – must be time for a Maori PM. Then following that a gay Maori PM must have a turn ….

    Its’s not about taking turns for each special group – it’s about leadership.

    This sort of BS – not ready for a gay PM – just shows how immature Beyer really is.

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  15. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    Andrew Little has ruled himself out. I think he’s been smart here. First by saying he would consider standing thereby putting his name in the discussions and increasing his profile as a possible leader. And second by acknowledging his lack of time in Parliament rules him out of contention – at this stage.

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  16. Fisiani (996 comments) says:

    Grant Robertson has declared that the NZ Blood transfusion service practices discrimination against homosexual men. Their crime? Declining to accept blood transfusions from such men due to an unacceptable risk of AIDS. Ask him to deny making that claim.

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  17. Chuck Bird (4,773 comments) says:

    @Fisiani

    Have you got a source for that please?

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  18. bc (1,355 comments) says:

    Hmmm, let’s see if I’m getting this right. It is ok for an MP to be gay as long as they don’t talk about being gay. A bit like the US military – don’t ask, don’t tell.
    Pathetic, I thought we had moved on from this.

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  19. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,834 comments) says:

    Redbaiter actually has it right. Chris Finlayson is the type of fellow who one can see in high office because he is above the ‘agendaism’ of the poofter brigade.

    Robertson exhibits many of the behaviour traits (Carter had them all.) seen by me in the overt homosexuals with whom I have had the misfortune to deal over the years. Self centred, dishonest, disloyal, lazy, greedy and above all else adept at cheating.

    Hmmmmmmm. I wonder when Kevin Rudd is going to out himself?

    (DPF note use of who and whom.)

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  20. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    bc

    Pretty sure we have moved on from this. See its that we started accepting people for what they are. Idiots like Beyer turn that around and want to drag us back to where people are defined by the fact they are gay rather than accepted for who they are be that whatever.

    Not ready for a gay PM… that’s like saying you need to elect a gay person … Which is like saying you must not elect a gay person. Beyer should know better than to define the person by their sexuality…. Perhaps he/she actually likes that aspect of him/her self bing the key point of definition for who he/she actually is…

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  21. bc (1,355 comments) says:

    Agree, burt. It would be nice if we accept people for who they are, rather than define them by their sexuality.

    But as along as we have people like adolf (see comment about yours) who equate homosexuality with a whole range of negative personality traits, it appears that Georgina may be right.

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  22. OneTrack (2,834 comments) says:

    Burt – except the Labour party is the home of the #manban. Surely that is an example of it being time to give “women” a turn. I am sure they have the same thoughts about lgbt -its time they had a “turn” too. Because that would be “fair”.

    In other words labour seems overrun with identity politics, over and above being the best for the job at hand. Greens and Maori are similar with their co-leader model. Will the greens demand co-Prime Ministers and co-deputy leaders. If not, why not?

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  23. Ross Miller (1,681 comments) says:

    and we weren’t quite ready for ‘her’ either and neither was she who contributed nothing during her six years in Parliament and ended up in a Council flat in Wgtn bemoaning the fact that she was unemployable.

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  24. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    OneTrack

    Labour are all about identity politics and that’s why they are nowhere near ready to govern. Affirmative action is still discrimination. Labour are inherently a party of social engineering so they won’t see affirmative action as either discrimination or social engineering – they only care that it wins them votes.

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  25. bc (1,355 comments) says:

    Mind you, Adolf starts his comment with the words “Redbaiter actually has it right”. That’s a sign that a stupid comment is about to follow right there.

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  26. Mark (1,434 comments) says:

    Beyer is right. Robertson will be a very difficult sell for labour. NZ is not yet as liberal as you may like to think DPF.

    Labour wins elections by big voter turnouts in south Auckland and working class suburbs. The chardonnay socialists do not vote them in despite being over represented in caucus.

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  27. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    NZ would take a gay PM tomorrow. The problem for Robertson is that he’s not yet that gay man.

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  28. tvb (4,255 comments) says:

    Robertson will uniTe the caucus better than Cunliffe and that is the dilemma. Both have their risks and it will not be an easy decision.

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  29. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    So have I got this correct… We have never had a gay PM before … right …..

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  30. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Grant Robertson’s sexuality is a red herring. There are not sufficient voters who would place that above the economy, jobs, education and law & order to prevent a party with an openly gay leader winning an election.

    But the real reason Grant should be elected as Labour leader is that (despite the Espiner canonisation piece in the Listener and the DomPost lauding of him):

    - he has a reputation within parliament as having a poor work ethic
    - he has not shown any genuine competency in his parliamentary work – he has scored no telling blows in any opposition portfolio he has held
    - he has achieved a giant sized zero for his electorate – although he does try to make out that he was behind the War Memorial project – but that is Chris Finlayson’s doing and Robertson had nothing to do with it at all
    - his political strategy is more suited to a Student Union – he simply focuses on all the wrong things; the things that ‘beltway’ pol sci grads think are important, but which voters don’t really give a damn about – e.g. a nearly single-minded focus on GCSB since the dotcom arrest

    There are some that think Cunliffe is unelectable, which may well be true, but he has the capability to score some points along the way. Grant being made leader would expose him for the ‘empty denim & hoody’ that he is.

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  31. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    I honestly wouldn’t worry about it. From what I’ve read, we are being prepared for a Robertson win. That means at least another three of not six years in opposition for Labour, and perhaps the end of it as the opposition. They just don’t understand that they are losing voters because they focus on beltway issues.

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  32. ChardonnayGuy (1,187 comments) says:

    Actually, I’m easy either way. It’d be great if Grant could become leader, but neither Cunliffe nor his supporters seem to be homophobes (and Cunliffe in fact voted for marriage equality as indeed did all of the current Labour caucus apart from Messrs Sio, O’Connor, R. Robertson and Tirakatene. What matters is policy development, not personalities, and focusing on capital gains tax, public service capacity and quality problems under the current government and other substantive issues is the best way to go. Teh gays are not monolithic.

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  33. Paulus (2,565 comments) says:

    Robertson will probably get it, with Little (as already agreed) Deputy, getting Mt Albert to cement his long term position, when in a few days, following Shearer’s meeting with Helen today/yesterday David Shearer goes by Christmas.

    Cunliffe likewise will be dog tucker, so will resign soon, allowing another Union member to have his seat. He will have no future in Labour.

    Little Pony who wants Mt Albert can go and jump – she does not feature in the equation.

    But Phil Goff will retire soon so that is another seat Auckland she can try for .

    It is a Unionised Party from now on though.

    Annette King will resign soon allowing Helen Kelly to have Rongotai.

    When Labour get stuffed (principally by Greenpeace) at the next election Robertson will be dumped – Little taking over as leader with Kelly as deputy.

    With the new Labour election rules this is the way it is designed.

    Imagine not too distant – Little as Leader and Kelly as Deputy. Kelly will probably knife Little anyhow.

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  34. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    Hey Chutney, it is long past time you stopped tarring anyone opposed to homosexualism with the hate term “homophobic”. There is no such medical condition, and its merely a propaganda term designed to silence anyone who might want to criticise the homosexualist political movement. Give it a rest, and if you’re going to discuss this issue, please do it in terms that are rational and not puffed out by hate phrases and propaganda.

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  35. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    It’s clear what we need to do. We must immediately setup a diversity register and define all the different “types” of people we have in NZ. We could group them by race, gender and sexual orientation. Lets say for argument sake there are 20 distinct identifable groups…. Each group must elect one person to represent them (however each group chooses to do that …) and then each representative is allowed a 6 month turn at being PM. I guess we could randomly select people from the magic 20 representatives…

    Imagine when somebody asks – ‘Has NZ ever had a post OP trans gender PM ?” we could say … well – NO… But I’ll just check the schedule – Oh yes, the post OP trans gender Asian PM gets a turn from October but if you are wanting a Maori pre OP trans gender PM that won’t be till April 2016 !

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  36. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9084614/Labor-leadership-fight-David-Cunliffe-edging-ahead

    See. This just shows that Labour never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

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  37. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    Hey Chutney, it is long past time you stopped tarring anyone opposed to homosexualism with the hate term “homophobic”

    We know you aren’t a homophobe, Red. Everyone knows that you are tortured by dreams of sweet man ass.

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  38. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Tom

    Don’t bait the baiter !

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  39. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    “There are not sufficient voters who would place that above the economy, jobs, education and law & order to prevent a party with an openly gay leader winning an election.”

    So speaks the Progressive wing of the National Party, a group of elitist out of touch clowns who are slowly but surely taking that party to a state as self destructive as that of the Labour Party and making both parties virtually indistinguishable in their sick allegiance to the poison of social liberalism and institutionalized racism.

    Don’t vote National if you want change. You’re wasting your vote.

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  40. Andrei (2,532 comments) says:

    Why don’t we have pedophile MPs? After all they’re an “oppressed” “community” who everybody is prejudiced against and who are “discriminated” against – a most misunderstood minority they are.

    The west has gone insane with all this identity politics bullshit

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  41. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Well Red at least we can be sure that you place sexuality as more important than the economy, jobs, education and law & order.

    Good luck with your campaign. If Colin Craig takes your advise he will simply blow another couple of mil for no return.

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  42. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    So speaks the Progressive wing of the National Party, a group of elitist out of touch clowns who are slowly but surely taking that party to a state as self destructive as that of the Labour Party

    Yes. I like how they are sneakily doing it by getting more votes than any National government has before, and being able to govern on their own.

    Doomed, I tell ye. Doomed!

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  43. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    “Don’t bait the baiter !”

    I am not bothered by boilerplate Marxists who use such terms as “we” and “everyone knows” when in fact its only poor old Teacher Tom writing his sad outdated commie rubbish here. An example of a person most responsible for the destruction of NZ’s education system, he’s got nothing to say that makes sense outside the cloistered confines of the staffroom.

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  44. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    Why don’t we have pedophile MPs?

    For the last time, Andrei: you aren’t getting into parliament.

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  45. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Andrei

    Why don’t we have pedophile MPs?

    A few comments up from yours I propose a way to solve this inequality. All groups will get a turn – so just make sure that pedophiles are correctly classified. IE: Do we need to have a separate PM for different types of pedophiles so that perhaps young pedophiles get a turn as well as old pedophiles get their rightful turn.

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  46. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    “Well Red at least we can be sure that you place sexuality as more important than the economy, jobs, education and law & order.”

    Had a look at the vote on the Stuff poll?

    Given that homosexualists will be frantically rigging it, they’re still behind at 60/40.

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  47. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    I am not bothered by boilerplate Marxists

    Since your diseased mind appears to have you constantly raving that said Marxists are undermining Western civilisation, I find this claim hard to swallow.

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  48. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Given that homosexualists will be frantically rigging it

    Your slip is showing Red!

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  49. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Tom

    I find this claim hard to swallow.

    Narrow throated people should be allowed a turn at being PM too you know !

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  50. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    This whole debate has little to do with the merits/or otherwise of homosexuality as, that it is a political issue for many people, homosexuality having been thrust on the electorate as a POLITICAL issue quite a bit the last few years, in the same way that Maori issues, gender issues, parochial issues are all relevant.

    Labour should go for Robertson (he’s the strongest candidate in my view), showcase his sexuality – a cause celebre inside Labour anyway, and – for once – just let the voters decide. Trying to pretend its not an issue is disingenuous to the whole last two decades.

    When is it compulsory, by-the-way?

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  51. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    Narrow throated people should be allowed a turn at being PM too you know !

    It’s a disability with benefits: all those gays who are trying to shove it down everyone’s throat have no luck with us.

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  52. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Had a look at the vote on the Stuff poll?

    A self-selecting poll like that on Stuff is as accurate representation of genuine feeling across the population as a blog system that allows people to give themselves ‘up-ticks’ Red

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  53. The Scorned (719 comments) says:

    Government should not care a damn about abstractionist like “Family’s” or such shit. Its INDIVIDUALS that matter as only individuals exist and have rights….Look after them and the subsequent abstract groupings they form in free interaction will take care of themselves….

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  54. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Tom

    Perhaps you shouldn’t have told us that. Now it’s clear you are a barrier to the assention of gay people and their rights to make their sexuality the most defining thing about them…. I’d say off with your head but … I’ve got heinous mental images of what Beyer might do with your throat once you can’t close your mouth to stop him her !

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  55. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    The Scorned

    You don’t get this multi level marketing to selected demographics angle … It’s not about being good government – it’s only about getting elected!

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  56. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    You see Bhudson, that is what makes National today no different from Labour and both equally repugnant- the presence in the party of cowards like you who have lost all idea of what the difference is between right and wrong.

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  57. Reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Labour should go for Robertson (he’s the strongest candidate in my view), showcase his sexuality – a cause celebre inside Labour anyway

    Yes they possibly will, the problem is, the public won’t.

    Jones is by far the most appealing candidate to the public because he represents what core-Labour used to represent before Hulun got ahold of it and strangled the heck out of it with a pretty rainbow and the Sisterhood. This is why they have been tanking in the polls, because despite what their caucus think, the public don’t actually want a whole brigade of homosexualists running the country.

    Shane Jones is a giant leap away from that, but Liarbore is run by self-interested naval-gazing venal feminist fanatics so it’ll be an interesting fight to see who wins, and if Shane doesn’t, kiss Liarbore goodbye for 2014.

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  58. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    Jones is by far the most appealing candidate to the public

    The publicly funded onanist? Yeah right.

    Cunliffe is the preferred candidate by a long way, according to the only public poll taken. Cunliffe/Ardern seems to be the vote getter.

    But, as I said, Labour will choose the fat waiter.

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  59. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    The affliction that is crippling this country is not the battle between capital and labour so much as it is the plague of Progressivism that infects both the Labour and National parties.

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  60. Reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Cunliffe is the preferred candidate by a long way, according to the only public poll taken.

    The issue with Cunliffe is the more you see him, the more you realise his nickname isn’t only a nickname. He’ll get strong support from the members, but not much from caucus or the unions. Whereas Jones would get the unions, because he’s mates with Little.

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  61. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    Redbaiter

    If you are against this Progressivism thing then I guess you won’t be upset when we all agree to remove “Redbaiters” from the list of groups who are going to get a turn at being PM ?

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  62. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Jones is by far the most appealing candidate to the public because he represents what core-Labour used to represent before Hulun got ahold of it and strangled the heck out of it with a pretty rainbow and the Sisterhood.

    Well there is the ‘dream team’ ticket then – Jone and O’Connor. (Mind you O’Connor seems to have gone a bit soft through the process of his redemption within caucus.)

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  63. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    The issue with Cunliffe is the more you see him, the more you realise his nickname isn’t only a nickname. He’ll get strong support from the members, but not much from caucus or the unions. Whereas Jones would get the unions, because he’s mates with Little

    Like I said, the winner will be someone else. The voters want Cunliffe. Jones would be worse than Shearer.

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  64. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    But, as I said, Labour will choose the fat waiter.

    Relax Tom, that Colmar poll will have Robertson scrambling to do a deal with Cunliffe – to support Cunliffe and keep the deputy role.

    Problem is Cunliffe could look at that poll and think he doesn’t need Grant anymore. And Grant was a big part of his banishment to the wilderness.

    Look for Cunliffe to buddy up with Andrew Little or Shane Jones (on the quiet so as not to upset Street and Dyson.) He might even go for an ‘out there’ option of Street as deputy. [I know caucus elect the deputy, but choices will be sounded out as part of the lobbying for the leadership vote.]

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  65. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    Relax Tom, that Colmar poll will have Robertson scrambling to do a deal with Cunliffee – to support Cunliffe and keep the deputy role.

    That poll doesn’t matter to the people who select the new leader. They want to preserve their own power within the party more than they want to win an election.

    The members like Cunliffe. That means that caucus will have to do a deal with the unions to ensure Robertson and Little win. They will.

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  66. Reid (16,111 comments) says:

    The voters want Cunliffe. Jones would be worse than Shearer.

    The voters want Cunliffe now, but once they’ve seen him in action a few times, they won’t. Jones represents what Liarbore used to be, sure, I wouldn’t vote for him but then I’ve never voted Liarbore in my life and I don’t intend to. But their issue is the people in the middle – the floaters – aren’t interested in what Liarbore has been interested in since Hulun got in. And everyone here has noted ages ago that all Liarbore’s policies to date have done is to attack the far left idiots not the centre-left floaters. And that’s where Liarbore’s future lies, if they have a future. Robertson is just another, much less able homosexualist, just like Hulun was and is. Cunliffe as I said, has a fatal flaw that he can’t hide. This leaves Jones because Little isn’t ready yet. Note that this is not what I expect to happen, but that’s the answer to electoral success.

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  67. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    The members like Cunliffe. That means that caucus will have to do a deal with the unions to ensure Robertson and Little win. They will.

    Cunliffe picked up a lot of union support when he recast himself as true Left in 2011. With the rules making bloc voting more difficult [nothing is impossible - union leaders can 'talk' with delegates] Cunliffe will keep some of that even if EPMU goes with Little and service union goes with Robertson.

    Cunliffe can probably win without Little, but Little will alienate himself from the membership if he backs Robertson. that is significant for his future prospects. If Cunliffe offers Little deputy and Jones finance, it is a done deal.

    It won’t unify caucus as the rainbow faction will be slighted through being overlooked and Jones being promoted. Cunliffe might be able to mitigate that to a degree by making sure there are some promotions there too – IIRC Louisa Wall is a Cunliffe fan and Street could also get a promotion.

    It is not difficult for Cunliffe to win this. It is actually harder for Robertson and I doubt caucus members outside of Mallard, Goff and King will be buying the ‘loyal deputy’ line (and even they don’t believe it – they just want to try to keep their jobs.)

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  68. ChardonnayGuy (1,187 comments) says:

    Given Robertson’s PSA affiliations and Cunliffe’s lack of union background, it’s possible that the unions will go for Robertson, while the general party membership goes for Cunliffe perhaps and the caucus might select either. Once this contest is over, I agree with Chris Trotter (for once!) that there should then be a Cunliffe-Robertson joint leadership. Either that, or Cunliffe gets the finance portfolio back if Robertson is successful. Such invective about Robertson, phobes. Scared of something, are we?

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  69. Redbaiter (8,032 comments) says:

    “Scared of something, are we?”

    More repulsed I’d guess.

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  70. Griff (7,008 comments) says:

    Yes red you chutney chute fantasy is very revolting.
    .
    Being prog’s we accept divergence from the norm. Even your fecal thing red, It is extremely unhealthy to want others to crap chutney down their chute and into your mouth . I would suggest that it still meets the golden rule of progs: if you dont crap on us go ahead.

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  71. ChardonnayGuy (1,187 comments) says:

    That’s okay, Red. If we do end up under the thrall of a (deep intake of breath) Giant Morris Dancing Lesbian Maori Beneficiary Disabled MMP Supporting Deconstructionist Trade Unionist regime, you can always emigrate to Queensland, where being inbred and semiliterate is regarded as a virtue, so you’d be right at home. Incidentally, why is it that the most whale-titted, prognathously jawed, knuckle dragging, badly dressed and generally evolutionarily challenged straight guys have fantasies that gay blokes find them attractive? Believe me, I suspect none of you are in any danger of that ever, ever happening to you. We have better standards.

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  72. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Once this contest is over, I agree with Chris Trotter (for once!) that there should then be a Cunliffe-Robertson joint leadership.

    Much like Chris Trotter this idea is an anachronism. In a fashion, the Americans tried it for a while, but dropped it in 1804 when they realized it was unworkable.

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  73. ChardonnayGuy (1,187 comments) says:

    Okay- I meant whoever wins the leadership should appoint the other as deputy. Either that, or if Robertson wins, have Cunliffe reappointed as finance spokesperson. Actually, this does raise another question. Why have the Nats had so few LGBT MPs themselves? Marilyn Waring, Chris Finlayson and Claudette Hautiti seem to be it, and there are a lot more LGBT fiscal conservative/centre-right voters out there, judging from the UK Conservative Party’s current intake, and their LGBTory organisation. Perhaps one of your lot should approach Michael Coote from the NBR, David? He’d be a good choice.

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  74. SHG (370 comments) says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a less-electable leadership candidate than Grant Robertson.

    Fat, bespectacled, gay, childless, a Wellington beltway insider who went straight from student union politics to the usual Labour checklist of the United Nations, Helen Clark’s staff, and the Labour front bench, and who has never had a private-sector job or run a business in his life.

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  75. burt (8,036 comments) says:

    bhudson

    If it were dropped in 1804 as unworkable then the socialists will need a bit more time to figure it out – hell they haven’t noticed yet their whole ideology always fails yet….

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  76. kiwi in america (2,477 comments) says:

    I never thought I’d ever agree with Georgina Beyer but I do on this issue. Labour has a turnout problem – their defeats in 2008 and 2011 were more about people who used to vote Labour staying home than with their voters switching parties. I agree that we have examples of gay MPs who never (or rarely) made their sexuality an issue (like Finlayson or Tim Barnett when he was in Parliament) versus gay activist MPs like Carter who squealed homophobia anytime the media or the public reacted to his childish antics and blatant troughing. MPs who happen to be gay and who eschew gender/sexual politics deserve to be judged on their merits and not who they spend their private life with. Robertson has on occasion worn his sexual preference on his sleeve and has traded off, and profited from, the desire amongst Labour activists to placate the rainbow coalition.

    Middle NZ attitudes on social issues are more conservative and traditional than urban elites and amongst the commentariat (like the media and bloggers like David and Whaleoil). Its not being homophobic to state that truth but given that truth, Robertson would have a tougher time turning out Waitakere Man and an even tougher time getting out the very socially conservative Pasifika vote. The former more likely would switch to NZF or National whereas the latter would just stay home. Either way its a party vote that a Cunliffe led Labour Party would get that a Robertson led party might not.

    Whoever best woes the unions will win this contest so discussions of electability amongst the caucus and wider party are moot. Unless one candidate totally dominates the party AND caucus, the near unanimity of the union block will tip the scales in favour of the union’s preferred candidate. If Robertson promises more than Cunliffe then he will be the Labour leader irrespective of these wider electability issues over his sexual preference.

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  77. ChardonnayGuy (1,187 comments) says:

    And here’s one key to Robertson’s appeal to some- Robertson has PSA ties, therefore giving him a trade union background that Cunliffe doesn’t have. Although, Cunliffe does seem ideally suited to the finance portfolio, given his MPA from Harvard Business School, and should be reappointed finance spokesperson if Robertson wins. And would Robertson really drive away Pacific, elderly or provincial voters from voting Labour? He does have Samoan connections as foreign aid coordinator for MFAT, don’t forget.

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  78. Fisiani (996 comments) says:

    The next Labour leader will be the one who promises to give unions more power. The one who bribes the unions most. The one who sells out NZ to the unions. Helen Kelly will decide who is the next Labour leader and in line to be the next Prime Minister.

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  79. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    …hell they haven’t noticed yet their whole ideology always fails yet….

    Heh. So very true.

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  80. Pete George (23,345 comments) says:

    Robertson has a real problem that has nothing to do with being gay. He is not very well known outside Wellington. He went to school and university in Dunedin (I found out recently I knew his father) but he hasn’t got much of a profile here outside political circles. I was talking to three ordinary people recently and mentioned his name, two hadn’t heard of Robertson and the other thought he was still from Dunedin.

    Cunliffe will probably have a bigger profile but even then outside political circles he won’t be well known. Such is politics and the media focusing only on leaders and embarrassments.

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  81. Griff (7,008 comments) says:

    leaders and embarrassments
    very right PG.
    Taking the policy out of politics and replacing it with personality.
    Another reason the traditional media is dying and blogs and net based alternatives growing.

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  82. Fletch (6,151 comments) says:

    Why are there so many gays in parliament anyway? They are over-represented when it comes to the percentage of Kiwis that are gay (probably under 2%). Somehow these minority activists manage to get into parliament and push their agendas and make law changes that the average kiwi is horrified by.

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  83. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    So Grant Robertson is first to declare their bid for the leadership.

    I just watched video of Chris Hopkins being interviewed on Q&A this morning. He must have said at least half a dozen times that the prospective candidates should be talking to each other.

    Looks like Robertson and Cunliffe couldn’t reach an accommodation.

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  84. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a less-electable leadership candidate than Grant Robertson

    That doesn’t matter to the morons running Labour.

    Who is going to vote got the Big Fat Gay Party, other than the usual suspects?

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  85. Longknives (4,686 comments) says:

    Labour would be mad not to appoint Robertson as leader- He will be the ‘Pin Up’ boy of the NZ media!
    Just like anyone who opposes Obama is an ‘Evil Racist’ , anyone who opposes Robertson will instantly be labelled an ‘Evil Bigot’…
    It’s a win-win for Labour and the Gweens. (Pity Hone hates gay people…)

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  86. Scott (1,736 comments) says:

    I don’t want another gay Prime minister. Gayness is a sign of bad character. Homosexuality is still a sin. Despite what the UN might say.

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  87. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    When announcing his bid for the leadership, Robertson said:

    “I think New Zealanders are more concerned about whether they’ve got a job, can they put food on the table, have their kids got a good school to go to than they are about my private life.”

    That’s funny. Up until Shearer resigned I could swear he was saying that what New Zealanders were concerned about was the GCSB.

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  88. wat dabney (3,724 comments) says:

    It didn’t stop Helen Clark from getting elected.

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  89. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    In his interview with Gower tonight, Robertson claimed that he should be PM because NZ needed real solutions and he could deliver them.

    One has to ask why he hasn’t delivered them over the past 5 years he has been in Parliament (the last 20 months as deputy leader of Labour.)

    Was he somehow touched by a magical ‘solution’ stick overnight? Or was he holding back his magic until he became leader? New Zealanders show know that

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  90. Longknives (4,686 comments) says:

    “Was he somehow touched by a magical ‘solution’ stick overnight?”

    I think it is highly likely he was ‘touched’ by some kind of stick overnight!..

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  91. Ian McK (237 comments) says:

    There should be no room in the public political trough for any form of deviant, of which Robertson is top of the class.

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  92. eszett (2,374 comments) says:

    ..any form of deviant, of which Robertson is top of the class.

    And you know that how, Ian? Do tell. You seem so well informed in the classes of deviance.

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  93. ChardonnayGuy (1,187 comments) says:

    Which the centre-right would have had, had the Christian Coalition been successful back in ’96 and Graham Capill’s pedophilia and serial rape of three little girls been exposed then. Deviants? Try women-battering homophobes like UK Christian Voice activist Stephen Green, who thinks spousal rape should be decriminalised, or a similar sorry Scottish Nationalist Party MSP recently exposed as another such piece of scum.

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  94. Longknives (4,686 comments) says:

    “here should be no room in the public political trough for any form of deviant,”

    Sheesh! Might be a bit late mate…..

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  95. Longknives (4,686 comments) says:

    Chardonnayguy- Wah Wah Yes we know every ‘right winger’ is a peadophile just because Graham Capill was…(keep grasping at that straw mate..)

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  96. kiwitoffee (383 comments) says:

    Beyer not ready? Who is?

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