Epsom and the ACT Leadership

January 27th, 2014 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

It’s pleasing to see three contenders going for either the Leadership or the nominations. Both these decisions will be made by the Board, and they are important decisions.

The first decisions is the easier one – the candidate for Epsom. I think the obvious and safe choice is .

Retaining Epsom is critical to ACT’s survival. No one thinks they can get 5% in 2014, so they must retain Epsom to stay in Parliament.

ACT did win Epsom in 2011, but a lot of feedback I got from National voters is they voted very reluctantly for the ACT candidate. One of them joked that it didn’t hurt as much as the thought it would.

I think centre-right voters in Epsom will have little reluctance to vote for John Boscawen. He is basically one of them. As Andrea Vance details, his story is from riches to rags to riches, and everyone who deals with him says he is an incredibly decent well motivated man who has managed to never burn any bridges with colleagues – which in the ACT Party is an extraordinary feat.

Epsom voters would be very comfortable with having John as their local MP. They know what they’ll be getting, and even if ACT’s brand today is somewhat bruised and battered, I think Boscawen can retain the seat for ACT. Any other candidate would be running a bigger risk of not winning.

So the Epsom decision is, I think, an easy one. The decision on the leadership is a harder one.

Again Boscawen would be a safe pair of hands for the leadership. He has been an MP, he would have a fairly united party, and you would not risk the problems of 2011 when the ACT Leader is pushing one policy (cannabis decriminalisation) and the Epsom candidate is fighting against it (knowing it would go down badly in Epsom).

However is a very attractive candidate. He is basically a pure classical liberal. In the televised minor party leader’s debates, he could well shine and attract back to ACT those who are both economically and socially liberal. Around 10% to 15% of the population or more find such a message appealing – the challenge is whether ACT as a party and brand can be credible to them. Whyte is free from the baggage of the past, so could be seen as the start of a new generation.

Of course the danger for Whyte is that if he is leader, he would only become an MP if ACT get at least 1.2% of the vote (they got 1.1% in 2011). So his job would be to make sure ACT get at least 1.2%. Boscawen’s would be to win Epsom.

But there are risks to splitting the jobs, as I detailed above. The safer route is Boscawen for both, and he is saying Kenneth Wang will be his Deputy Leader which could help attract Asian votes. They would need 2.0% to get a third MP, and that looks very challenging.

However the downside of Boscawen for both is that a generational change may not occur for some time, and may not be possible in the future. Whyte I think does have a greater ability to appeal to young urban professionals.

One other advantage of a split is if Whyte is Leader and Boscawen MP for Epsom, then my strong recommendation would be Whyte does not become a Minister. For a small party, best to keep the leader outside the Government focused on selling the party message. Boscawen hence could become a Minister if National is re-elected, helping implement ACT policies, while Whyte sells the party’s message.

So there are pros and cons for both Whyte and Boscawen for Leader. In the end it will come down to what appetite for risk the ACT Board is willing to consider, and if they think the potential benefits are realistic and outweigh the risks.

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50 Responses to “Epsom and the ACT Leadership”

  1. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    @JohnBoscawennz

    I am organising a public meeting this Thursday in the Epsom electorate. Jamie Whyte and David Seymour have been invited

    t will be in the Somervell Presbyterian Church, 497 Remuera Road 7.30 pm Thursday 30 January.

    I am proposing a similar structure to recent Labour Party leadership meetings where the press can come for speeches, but not questiontime.

    David Seymour has advised will speak at the Somervell Church meeting Jan 30. Public meeting and media are welcome for entire event.

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  2. Joanne (177 comments) says:

    If ACT is seriously looking at long term success and not just win Epsom at every election and achieve one seat, then they will look seriously at Jamie Whyte.

    If ACT wants the support it once had, then it needs to go back to the principled party it once was, not a shadow or puppet of National.

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  3. RRM (8,997 comments) says:

    Why the insistence on calling Whyte the “leader”?

    Why not just let him be a very high-profile #2 on the list, and equally as much of a spokesman on their policies as Boscawen?
    And just be upfront about the fact that for now, Boscawen is the Master, and Whyte is the Apprentice, but there is succcession in mind? Succession and endurance being one of the things Act has so often been lacking.

    As long as they are singing from the same song sheet and look like a coherent team, I think people would be supportive enough of that sort of arrangement…?

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  4. reversespin (65 comments) says:

    Ipredict is all over the show on this….

    https://www.ipredict.co.nz/app.php?do=browse

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  5. Mags (36 comments) says:

    Why can’t Whyte stand in another electorate? Having ACTs eggs all in the Epsom basket isn’t the best strategy, also having another electorate being contested widens their base and media coverage.

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  6. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    Why can’t Whyte stand in another electorate?

    There’s been talk about National giving a potential coalition partner an easy ride in East Coast Bays by putting Murray McCully on the list only. Maybe they could give Act a second shot there.

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  7. NK (919 comments) says:

    There’s been talk about National giving a potential coalition partner an easy ride in East Coast Bays by putting Murray McCully on the list only.

    And talk is all it is. It won’t happen.

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  8. Martin Gibson (206 comments) says:

    Those are sound calls.

    If John Boscawen takes a workman-like approach to winning Epsom and Jamie Whyte frees himself to get the party vote up as leader to enter parliament then Act could get the rejuvenation it needs while holding on to a sensible member of the old guard.

    They’re going to need a good strategy to avoid punching those poisonous tar babies from the left, but talking to and advocating for net tax payers as a distinct tribe here would be a good start, and would be a good bit of differentiation from the blizzard of promises funded by other people’s money.

    Another good theme for them to drive home would be the need for upward mobility and reward for hard work. There would be a surprising number of votes from those hard-working ambitious Maori who want their kids to do well and don’t have as shrill a voice in the media as the over-weight and under-worked “give me more money” perpetual-victim brigade.

    As an earlier post noted, there needs to be a line drawn between reward for risk and crony capitalism, with which ACT is aligned in many people’s minds.

    Exciting to see ACT looking and sounding plausible and electable once more.

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  9. Than (376 comments) says:

    ACT did win Epsom in 2011, but a lot of feedback I got from National voters is they voted very reluctantly for the ACT candidate. One of them joked that it didn’t hurt as much as the thought it would.

    That’s consistent with Banks margin – he only beat Goldsmith by a couple of thousand votes. It would apply even more strongly if National tried to get their voters to support Colin Craig. Even with National’s endorsement I’m doubtful he would win a seat.

    I agree with RRM, whether Whyte is called the leader is not important. The key thing is Act needs to look like a organised team presenting a united message (i.e. basically the opposite of what it did in 2011). If they can do that, and they can convince people (as early as possible) that they are going to get back into parliament then 2-4% of the party vote would be quite plausible.

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  10. s.russell (1,486 comments) says:

    Excellent summary of the choice Act faces. I suspect you are right that Boscawen would be a very easy choice for Epsom voters, but if National make it plain they are giving the electorate to Act, it is unlikely they would reject Whyte. And really, how much does Act have to lose at this point? Whyte has the best chance of sparking a revival in the party’s fortunes.
    I think John Boscawen is the right man in the right place. But, sadly, at the wrong time.

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  11. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    It won’t happen for any potential coalition party?

    If National does compete for Upper Harbour, Mr Craig says they might instead be open to cutting a deal in East Coast Bays. Murray McCully has held the seat since 1987, and aside from a short stretch in the 1980s, it’s been in National’s hands since the early 1970s.
    As Foreign Minister Mr McCully doesn’t spend a lot of time in the electorate, Mr Craig says he might ask National to bump him to the list and let the Conservatives have a free run.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Colin-Craig-eyes-up-East-Coast-Bays/tabid/1607/articleID/322225/Default.aspx

    But Craig does appear to do a lot of media speculation without apparently actually talking to National.

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  12. gravedodger (1,426 comments) says:

    Until the trainwreck that Heather Roy engineered, then the trip to “left luggage” to claim the battered old suitcase Banksie, Act was chugging along inspite of a concerted campaign by the “unbiased” media. Thanks again David Garrett.

    Boscowan in Epsom with Wang, Whyte and Seymour in other seats, Hide and Issacs in planning, Brash and Banks down to the vet for humane purposes and ACT has a potential to re-enter the game in a meaningful way.

    Here’s hoping anyway as the team named above has real potential to regain the lost ground.

    BTW why does the Leader have to front a minor party debate if Jamie Whyte is the man, The Melons and the Apartheid mobs have choices and god knows Mana need one.

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  13. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    Act could do the co-leader thing. That would give both Boscawen and Whyte connection with the media, it covers the one MP scenario if that eventuates, it looks like a party than a one electorate deal and also gives nods to both experience and the future.

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  14. Harriet (4,010 comments) says:

    “…..In the televised minor party leader’s debates, he could well shine and attract back to ACT those who are both economically and socially liberal….”

    Drugs and euthanasia is about all that’s left.

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  15. MT_Tinman (2,793 comments) says:

    gravedodger I agree.

    I shall vote for ACT at the next election.

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  16. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    It looks like the ACT Board like past ACT Boards over the years are going to make a poor selection. The Board is either leaking like sieve or the Board members are more interested in making a few dollars off ipredict than the future of ACT. I personally would like ACT to get one MP in Epsom and no more. People would be better to give their votes to National or another potential coalition partner. However, I share many others view of John Boscawen and would like to see him succeed.

    ACT last polling 0.0% on the latest Roy Morgan poll and the average on this blog’s sidebar is 0.3%. If Boscawen runs in Epsom he would almost certainly get in Epsom. If David Seymour runs he would probably get in but I am sure there would be a far greater chance of him missing out. Epsom voters would like the idea of their MP being a cabinet minister.

    I am sure Boscawen on his own would attract more party votes for ACT than Seymour. When you add the extra votes he would by making Kenneth Wang deputy he would have the best change of bring in another MP and maybe 2 at a stretch.

    If Seymour gets in Epsom on his own it will be the end of ACT.

    The message Seymour and Jamie Whyte push is libertarian not just socially liberal. Does anyone recall that percentage of the vote the New Zealand Libertarian Party get?

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  17. peterwn (2,939 comments) says:

    This sort of situation is a real test of leadership at all levels for the various parties. I am not too sure that un-subtle methods such as a cup of tea in Parnell tearooms is appropriate. Instead the decision on who to vote for needs to be an ‘organic’ one both within the major party’s organisation and among the wider electorate. Similar applies to Ohariu where National needs to select a fresh candidate anyway, and whatever electorate Colin Craig decides to roost on.

    Logically the voting decision for National supporters is a no-brainer – party vote to National and electorate vote to ‘minor’ candidate, but human nature being what it is, such electors will either vote for the ‘minor’ candidate through gritted teeth, vote the National candidate or just stay at home. It is galling for the local party organisation to have its candidate ‘kneecapped’ by Head Office, especially if the candidate has been given a poor list position but the poor candidate is still expected to be the local ambassador for the party vote. So it is a real test of leadership for the Party Leader together with the non Parliamentary leadership down to electorate chair, as well as from the candidate. Party members who can view the matter objectively also have a role to play to help bring others on-side.

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  18. radvad (620 comments) says:

    Totally agree with everything you said DPF but I would go a step further. John should announce on his selection for Epsom that he is not seeking a sweetheart deal with National but will campaign for election on his merits and either have a lowly list ranking (about 4) or not go on the list at all. Epsom voters and hopefully National would get the subtext.

    Having a totally new face as leader (whether Whyte or Seymour) would create considerable media interest and also represent a much needed generational shift.

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  19. iMP (2,154 comments) says:

    This is kicking a dead horse stuff. ACT’s brand was not that distinctive in its glory days anyway, just recycled Roger Douglas. Their perpetual one-seat coat-tail existence is like long-term life support. SWITCH OFF THE MACHINE.

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  20. iMP (2,154 comments) says:

    …and let ‘market forces’ determine ACT’s future. That’s their mantra anyway, isn’t it. Let’s be consistent. Why give ACT a Centralised Govt. seat ‘subsidy’ leg-up. Anathema to everything ACT stood for.

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  21. Viking2 (10,738 comments) says:

    Imp, it will be mana’s, the Greens and Labour life support that will be attached to MRP. We can then switch the bloody thing on and “poof”all the poofs and wankers will go to meet their 72 virgins.

    P.S. we now have plenty of spare electricity so the final switch will be no great challenge.

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  22. RRM (8,997 comments) says:

    It would be good to see National with ACT and the Conservatives in Government.

    If both pressure parties do their jobs right it might really illuminate for the unwashed that there’s not just this one generalised “the right” that wants to take away people’s bene.

    In recent times, minor right parties have been completely missing in action in New Zealand, there has been no competent advocates for conservative ideals or libertarian ideals, there’s only been the National Party and its own inner guidance.

    Contrast this with how effectively and how often the Greens get their left of Labour messages out there.

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  23. virtualmark (1,423 comments) says:

    I’m puzzling a bit about ACT’s contribution to getting a National-led government in 2014.

    As far as I can see, if ACT is heading for more than 1% of the party vote, but less than 5% of that party vote, then it’s rational for the Nats to throw them an Epsom lifeline, rather than see ACT’s share of the party vote lost. And ACT might generate an overhang, which would help the maths of getting confidence & supply.

    But:
    * currently ACT are polling at less than 1% of the party vote, and
    * if voters aren’t giving ACT their party vote then surely they’re giving that party vote to National instead – hard to see ACT voters choosing to back Labour instead.

    So what do the Nats gain by having ACT in? It’s not like there’s going to be a big wasted (ACT) party vote. The Nats would pick up Epsom seat anyway. And the Nats are going to get the ertswhile-ACT party vote too.

    What’s in it for the Nats?

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  24. bringbackdemocracy (350 comments) says:

    At the last election Act polled 1.1% and United polled 0.6%, both have less support now than they did then. The Conservative party got more votes than both of them combined in 2011 ( 2.7%) and are seeing their support increasing.

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  25. NK (919 comments) says:

    But:
    * currently ACT are polling at less than 1% of the party vote,

    It’s January. The election is ages away. In politics a day is a century. MMP elections have shown us that it’s the last 2-3 weeks that really matter in terms of polls. I don’t think January polls really matter much.

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  26. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    The Conservative party got more votes than both of them combined in 2011 ( 2.7%) and are seeing their support increasing.

    That’s a fallacy that keeps getting promoted. See Small party trends with Roy Morgan

    Craig is well known for overstating his support.

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  27. Colville (1,780 comments) says:

    Pete George.

    I will bet you $100 that the Conservatives get more party votes than UF and ACT combined in the 2014 election.

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  28. Than (376 comments) says:

    virtualmark said;

    What’s in it for the Nats?

    I agree. In terms of winning the election National has very little to gain from an arrangement with Act. Likewise with an arrangement with the Conservatives. In both cases the minor party would be taking votes that would otherwise have gone to National. I would like to see Act rejuvenated, but that’s because I support their policy rather than because it makes a National-led government more likely.

    However some people believe voters are resistant to having a single party majority government. I don’t buy this myself – we had single party government all the time under FPP, and even today people think of it as “the National government” rather than “the National-led government”. But if this was the case then having a minor party ally is a good idea even if the combined party vote doesn’t increase.

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  29. bringbackdemocracy (350 comments) says:

    Where’s the fallacy Pete?

    TV3 Nov 2013 Conservatives 2.8%, Act 0.8%, United 0.1%

    Roy Morgan Jan 2014 Conservatives 2.5%, Act 0.0%, United 0.5%

    UMR November 2013 Conservatives 3.8%

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  30. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    Colville – ask me a week before the election. To many things to happen before then.

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  31. Pete George (21,828 comments) says:

    bringbackdemocracy – those are single polls from three different pollsters so you can’t take a trend from them, but if you tried it would show a drop for Conservatives.

    The best trend is from Roy Morgan polls which I linked to, that shows a bit of bouncing around but mostly less than the last election result.

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  32. bringbackdemocracy (350 comments) says:

    Trend Pete?

    TV3 Conservatives 2.8% highest result for TV3
    Roy Morgan Conservatives 2012 avg 1.6%, 2013 avg 1.61%, 2014 2.5%

    UMR Nov 3.8%, 2013 avg 2.8%

    The only trend I see is up.

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  33. doggone7 (493 comments) says:

    When in Mt Eden last week I didn’t see a cafe big enough for the 2014 cup of tea.

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  34. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    @virtualmark

    Under MMP rules ACT could get 0.1% of the vote and the certre right would be up 1 seat in total. Last election UF got 0.6% and that also put the certre right be up 1 seat. Labour did the same thing for years with Jim Anderton but the media took a different stance.

    In the case of the Conservative Party the centre right would gain much more. Key is a pragmatist. That is why he is waiting till much closer the election to decide if he will gift a seat to Colin Craig – probably East Coast Bays. If Key makes his message clear there will be a lot more people vote for the Conservatives as many people rightly do not want to waste their vote.

    About 25,000 people signed the Family First Marriage Pledge including me. Those who signed said they would not vote for an MP who voted for the redefinition of marriage or a party whose leader did. That leaves two parties to vote for the Conservatives or NZF. So if Key does not help Colin with a seat and the Conservatives are polling low many of those who pledged their vote will vote NZF.

    I would expect Bob McCoskrie will invite party leaders to a Family First Conference prior to the election as he has done in the past. It will be made clear how to vote to maximize conservative influence in a future government.

    It is strange how many National voters are so strongly opposed to Winston yet he is push a policy that helped Don Brash nearly double Nationals vote. Rodney Hide supported special privilege for Maori in local government. I wonder what ACT’s current policy is on this. One thing is certain and that is if John Boscawen is leader he would give and honest answer. Most people would not have confidence from someone they do not know.

    I have made plenty of mistakes but try to learn from them. It looks like the ACT Board has not learned from the past folly of parachuting someone into to a top position.

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  35. Viking2 (10,738 comments) says:

    Rodney Hide supported special privilege for Maori in local government.

    don’t talk crap Chuck.
    The Nats were the driver of that.

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  36. virtualmark (1,423 comments) says:

    Chuck Bird,

    My 2 cents worth is that National might get more from gifting a seat to the Conservatives than they would gifting a seat to ACT.

    Personally I’m not a fan of the Conservatives. But they have about 2.5%-3% of the vote today, and I’d wager a fair bit of that vote has been won from Winston First and Labour. My view is that the Conservatives are going to push Winston’s party vote down below 5%, and then he’s gone.

    Meanwhile ACT aren’t bringing any extra party votes to the table Sure, some people here are saying “It’s just January, wait till closer to the election”. But (a) ACT’s support has been in the toilet for a long time, not just in January, and (b) if ACT’s support were to rise to say 2% or 3% that would probably be because they’ve siphoned votes off National. I wouldn’t want that 2%-3% vote to be wasted, so would support the Nats gifting ACT Epsom. But it’s not actually a net gain to the right, it’s just slicing the pizza differently.

    Then, to be Machiavellian. If you thought the Conservatives were going to get 3% or so, largely from Winston … maybe if you’re John Key you’d just let them both fall below the 5% mark, and let the votes for both parties get wasted, so that your party vote was a bigger share of the vote that counts …

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  37. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    “don’t talk crap Chuck.
    The Nats were the driver of that.”

    Nats were the driver but Rodney promised to ACT members there is no way he would support special Maori seats in local government and he would resign as Minister of Local Government first. Rodney was no different than most MPs as far a perks go so he was prepared to swallow a dead rat.

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  38. NK (919 comments) says:

    Chuck, this might surprise you but there are no Maori seats in local government. So what do you mean?

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  39. Pete Burdon (19 comments) says:

    If ACT don’t go for John Boscowan, they will need to get their candidate some serious media coverage. Even though Epsom will be in the news, people don’t vote for who they don’t know. At least Boscowan has some profile.

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  40. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    “If you thought the Conservatives were going to get 3% or so, largely from Winston … maybe if you’re John Key you’d just let them both fall below the 5% mark”

    @virtualmark

    Conservative voters are not stupid. They know such basic things as you cannot put a square peg in a round hole. Some of them are also pretty good an arithmetic. I have not decided yet who I will vote for yet. In voting for a minor party you do not just look at their policies. You also need to look the odds of a party getting in.

    If Colin is gifted ECB and Winston is say polling under 4% my vote would go to Colin. On the other hand if Key does not gift Colin a seat and Winston is polling higher my vote would go with Winston.

    Key cannot count on anything from the Maori Party so he will be struggling to get in without more than 1 MP each from ACT and UF. Mind you a week is a longtime in politics. The ABCs could turn on Cunliffe and Key could make it on him own. That is why he is noncommittal to the Conservatives.

    I would probably be a little keener to see Winston at this stage get in because of the Maori seats. I think they are bad for Maori as affirmative action is for women.

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  41. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    Nick, you are technically correct. Rodney made that point at the time. Maori get in with voting rights without even having to stand.

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  42. NK (919 comments) says:

    Yes, and that’s actually worse!

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  43. BlairM (2,266 comments) says:

    It’s not even a question. If Boscawen wants to be Leader and run for Epsom, you give him both those things. You are not going to parachute in anyone else. He is a safe pair of hands and a formidable campaigner. At the very worst he is the devil you know. He’s a self made man with experience as an MP who will connect with Epsom voters. It’s beyond a no-brainer. He is the best bet for reviving the ACT brand at this point.

    That’s no slur on the other two contenders, whom I have the utmost respect for, and believe to be talented individuals. Seymour is a star and a future Leader, if ACT can survive this election. But not just yet. While possible, it would be far harder to sell Whyte or Seymour to the public than Boscawen at this point, when Boscawen’s profile is significantly more prominent. The Board would be mad not to run with him.

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  44. Viking2 (10,738 comments) says:

    Chuck Bird (4,251 comments) says:
    January 27th, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    Nick, you are technically correct. Rodney made that point at the time. Maori get in with voting rights without even having to stand.
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    NK (826 comments) says:
    January 27th, 2014 at 4:27 pm

    Yes, and that’s actually worse!
    ==========================

    That was the Nats final draft. Not Rodders. Too many Maori in the National caucus.

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  45. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    Rodney did not have to support it. It was clearly against ACT policy at the time and Rodney was Minister of Local government. Some National Party Maori may have pushed for it like Tau Henare but I think Key was mainly trying to placate the Maori Party.

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  46. deadrightkev (180 comments) says:

    Seriously, its almost embarrassing such talk of a democratic selection process. Anyone that knows the history of the Act governance in recent terms knows it is already a done deal, just the semantics and choreography for the members benefit to be enacted. But it is amusing to watch.

    John Boscawen has been selected as leader and Epsom candidate, no doubt the call came down from JK to serve your country, a steady pair of hands and all that. In return for this he gets a ministerial portfolio and assorted baubles. So much for the Act party in parliament to hold National to account and promote its free market policies and personal responsibility.

    And don’t give me that crap about not risking Labour and the Greens getting into power. Kiwis want a party to represent its members.

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  47. ChardonnayGuy (1,024 comments) says:

    Is Boscawen necessarily best suited for Epsom? He seems to be a neoconservative, and Epsom is an urban liberal seat. Whyte might well be a better fit than Boscawen in that case. However, Boscawen may still have merit as a party president. Unfortunately and unintentionally for Boscawen, it is continuity that is the problem here. Does Boscawen carry factional baggage that might lead to further upheavals within ACT’s caucus and external party organisation? Because if that’s the case, then Whyte or Seymour are untainted by that risk of contamination and are therefore good choices for the seat.

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  48. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    Maverick gesture takes Act leadership contest away from board
    5:30 AM Tuesday Jan 28, 2014

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11192803

    I wonder what difference this will make to the contest.

    If the ACT Board was smart they delay there decision and poll the Epsom electorate. A public meeting is good but hard to gauge the view of the whole electorate from a meeting.

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  49. deadrightkev (180 comments) says:

    Chuck

    John has pulled out his chequebook. Game over.

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  50. Chuck Bird (4,415 comments) says:

    @deadrightkev

    John has been very generous for many years and not just with ACT. He has supported other causes he believes in. He generously supported ACT for years without considering entering Parliament. Your earlier comment that he is motivated by a ministerial portfolio and assorted baubles is nonsense. He gave away his ministerial role at one stage so he could focus on ACT.

    The quote below from David Seymour demonstrates clearly that he is not up to the job. His allegation of John similar to yours is totally without foundation. The reason ACT is in the position it is in is because of infighting. David shows it is still going on. He may be 30 and an adult but he shows his immaturity speaking publicly about someone his senior in age and experience. If he gets into Parliament and spoke so disrespectfully to National Ministers let alone the PM he would not help ACT survive. If David is selected for Epsom and while door knocking speak disrespectfully to a homeowner twice his age that is strongly anti-cannabis that will not help his election chances.

    I have never met Jamie Whyte so I cannot really comment on him. However,

    Mr Seymour, 30, said he would attend the Boscawen public meeting on Thursday.

    He believed that Mr Boscawen “just enjoys having public meetings”.

    “It’s a lot of what he has done in the past and it is a bit of a glory-day thing for him.”

    BTW, Kev are you an ACT member and if so what is your name?

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