More renewal for National

December 3rd, 2013 at 4:30 pm by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Taranaki-King Country MP has announced he will retire from politics at the next election.

Ardern, who once drove a tractor up Parliament’s steps, said after 16 years it was time to retire in order to spend more time with his family and return to full time work on his farm.

“Family and farming is where my heart lies.”

Ardern said it had been a “privilege” to serve his electorate, saying he entered politics because he was passionate about representing rural New Zealanders and ensuring they had a voice in Wellington.

“As Chair of the Primary Production Select Committee, Chair of ’s agriculture caucus, and through my work on a number of other select committees, I have worked on policies that have helped drive New Zealand’s economic recovery,” he said.

“These have assisted our farming communities and the towns and businesses that rely so heavily on the success of our primary industries.”

Ardern was first elected in a by-election in 1998.

I have fond memories of going up to Taranaki for a few days and campaigning in Stratford for Shane during the by-election. Sadly one of the roads I was given to door knock was the one with the nurses’ residences for the local hospital – which was closing. Didn’t get the best responses, but was a fun campaign.

Shane has been a great advocate for rural New Zealand, and will be interesting to see who comes forward to contest the seat.

This brings the number of announced National retirements to eight – Chris Tremain, Chris Auchinvole, Kate Wilkinson, Katrina Shanks, Paul Hutchison, Phil Heatley, Cam Calder and now Shane Ardern.  While each individual departure is sad, the opportunity for National to rejuvenate is significant. The contrast to Labour is significant as their MPs who entered in the 1980s refuse to leave.

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20 Responses to “More renewal for National”

  1. iMP (2,154 comments) says:

    Yes, it shows perhaps that Lab. Mps know they are unmarketable in the real job market, because they don’t live in the real world, and is perhaps also why Lianne Dalziel left it until the absolute final moment she knew she was mayor before resigning from parliament.

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  2. Manolo (12,637 comments) says:

    Renewal or excretion?

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  3. Camryn (549 comments) says:

    I’m a firm believer in representative democracy as opposed to the direct kind. As such, I’m very much in favour of politicians who come from outside the political scene, dedicate a few years to representing us, and then leave again. The appearance of a full-time political class causes dissatisfaction with representative democracy and fuels calls for direct political involvement of the people (which I think is inefficient and ineffective, at least in our context). I hope National continues to select primarily politicians of this temporary type or who have at least had a non-political life before parliament. I hope Labour comes to realize that a life in politics “serving the community” does not actually make you a member of that community. You have to be a member of it *before* you leave to serve it. I doubt they will come to this realization though… it would conflict with their core belief that they know best and must dedicate their entire lives to helping us poor regular folk see the light!

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  4. wikiriwhis business (3,302 comments) says:

    Helen and Jonathan Hunt must be the only Lab MP’s who found gainful employment

    and even those positions could be considered dodgy.

    Ex Lab president Mike Williams must have absolutely horrified Lab MP’s running to Owen Glenn begging for a job.

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  5. Alan (919 comments) says:

    I guess it makes sense for those with no prospect of ministerial advancement to get out now rather than spend the next 3 years in opposition.

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  6. Dennis Horne (2,059 comments) says:

    I know young people have more energy but older people have more experience of life and are less swayed by fashion. They are also less concerned about being unpopular; the need to provide pap for the masses is the failing of democracy.

    I have no idea how we can get better people into Parliament, it’s a problem worldwide. It’s not enough just to be clever, President Hollande is very clever but being clever doesn’t stop him being useless twat.

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  7. iMP (2,154 comments) says:

    Meanwhile over in recycled NatMPs-land, it’s the final ACT with the unfortunately labelled Electoral Act – ACT’s death knell.

    http://conzervative.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/the-death-of-act-dec-2013/

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  8. Monique Angel (229 comments) says:

    It’s not a true renewal. Those who entered Parliament in 1990 make up the non representative Old Boys club that oversee National party machinations. Bill English and Tony Ryall are the complete tits that should be leaving Parliament for failure to rejuvenate New Zealand’s economic landscape.

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  9. UpandComer (496 comments) says:

    Monique Bill and Tony are the two best performing govt ministers of the past 20 years, of either stripe. I put Bill over Cullen for doing much more with much less. U sir (ma’am?) respectfully, r a bit silly. Non representative? They both held seats until Bill gave his up very recently, and they earned their positions the hard way. Show some respect. ‘failure to rejuvenate the economic landscape’ what does that even mean, is that the role of govt, and r u aware how the economy is looking?

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  10. iMP (2,154 comments) says:

    Colin King is being challenged for Kaikoura (Nats).

    http://conzervative.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/colin-king-being-challenged-for-kaikoura/

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  11. Dr Pepper (1 comment) says:

    National is doing a great job with renewing candidates in their electoral seats. They’ve trimmed the deadwood, and have also let some good people go to ensure continued rejuvenation and life within the party.

    That said, there’s still some deadwood among their list MPs (Melissa Lee, Claudette Hauiti) that needs to be pruned.

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  12. Inky_the_Red (719 comments) says:

    If they were Labour MPs would they be rats deserting the ships?

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  13. toad (3,654 comments) says:

    Looks like there may be some renewal in ACT as well, given that their sole MP now looks like standing a good chance of double-bunking with one of the dope-smoking, porn-watching, brown criminals from South Auckland he claimed were invading the homes of the good white people of Epsom in the 2011 election campaign.

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  14. toad (3,654 comments) says:

    @UpandComer 6:18 pm

    Recall Bill English as Mr 21% in 2002?

    And if you still think English is so flash after that debacle, you might want to read Danyl’s post here:

    Most of the heavy lifting performed by English involves lifting up huge armfuls of taxpayer cash and giving it to the private sector. Still, I guess he is only partly responsible for the debacle of the asset sales policy, and the house-price bubble building up under his watch hasn’t blown up and crippled our economy, yet, but merely forced an intervention from the central bank locking first time buyers out of the market and reducing the number of new houses being built. So great job!

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  15. Grant (383 comments) says:

    “And if you still think English is so flash after that debacle, you might want to read Danyl’s post here:

    Yes indeed Toad. The dimpost being such a source of erudite economic commentary as it is. Does danyl write green party fiscal policy as well?
    G.

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  16. WineOh (430 comments) says:

    Great to see renewal in the ranks, fresh talent brings fresh ideas.

    There are very few leaving the front benches, and not much has changed in the lineup there outside of switching portfolios and obligatory demotions when mouth acts before brain.

    The list of departures seem to be largely those who have put in some hard yards for the party, but not destined for further greatness… how many have been given the “lets free up your future” speech from the whips or caucus.

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  17. UpandComer (496 comments) says:

    I always find it so hilarious, jarring and dissonance inducing when anyone from the green party tuts about ‘lifting up huge armfuls of taxpayer cash and giving it to the private sector’. How do you guys not have face twitches criticising any and every spending cut and growth policy ever, whilst waxing lyrical criticising govt borrowing? As for 2002, it must be galling having your intellectual dishonesty very effectively illuminated by the same individual who is being lauded internationally for his character and competence. I have the same jarring dissonance when you guys talk about housing. Your mate’s who sensibly wouldn’t let u near govt did nothing, at all, on housing for 9 years with your vote and silence. There were more ppl looking after the fast forward fund of all things then our multi billion dollar housing asset under your Labour friends. National had the foresight deep in the recession three years ago to put in place the housing accords which are bearing fruit now. That’s a real plan. Not 100000 thousand fairy houses built on whimsy and ironically involving an unprecedented ‘ lifting up of huge armfuls of taxpayer cash and giving it to the private sector’. I’m sure Russell has lined up some shares in Fletcher building. Again how can people who back ‘kiwiassure’ talk about net transfers without keeping a straight face? I’ll just note that when the greens spend money subsidising govt run money losers it’s ‘smart interventionism’. When national saves thousands of jobs in a region for a bargain it’s ‘corporate welfare’. Oh and Bill inherited and fixed the broken non banking finance sector. I look forward toad to your party being subjected to scrutiny.

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  18. TheContrarian (1,043 comments) says:

    Heh, I was there that day he drove a tractor up the steps. It was all types of fun

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  19. Sir Cullen's Sidekick (528 comments) says:

    Now that National has been crushed in Christchurch East by-election and Cunliffe’s victory is guaranteed in 2014, rats are leaving the sinking ship at a rapid rate.

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  20. FlashinthePan (13 comments) says:

    Shane Ardern has been a dismal failure as an Electorate MP and in Parliament.

    Despite figures showing high average incomes (over inflated due to the few in well paid oil and dairy jobs) the towns of Taranaki-King Country have been hurting for all of Ardern’s 15 years.

    All Ardern has advocated for is farmers. The towns have just been left to struggle. Some like Otorohanga under Dale Williams have risen to the challenge, developing strategies to get youth into jobs.

    The fact that Ardern couldn’t crack Cabinet in 15 years speaks volumes. His colleagues could obviously see his lack of value in Parliament.

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