Marlborough’s economy

May 20th, 2016 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Labour has selected its challenger to try and turn the safe National seat in Kaikoura red.

Former farmer, mediator and community advocate Janette Walker is the first confirmed Labour candidate in New Zealand for the 2017 general election. …

Walker was defeated by National’s Stuart Smith in the 2014 general election after Smith won with a final majority of more than 12,000 votes.

Walker said this time around she was better known but she would not be making any changes to her campaign style.

The campaign style was relentless negativity and gloom.

The result was Labour got a miniscule 17.1% of the party vote in Kaikoura.

The Marlborough economy was not booming, exemplified by 23 empty shops in the town centre, she said.

The electorate is more than Blenheim. Stats NZ reported in March:

For the year ended March 2015, Marlborough’s GDP increased 2.2 percent, which was influenced by volatility in agriculture, largely offsetting increases in other industries.

From 2010–15, Marlborough’s economy increased 28.0 percent. This was led by the manufacturing industry (food, beverage, and tobacco product) – Marlborough’s largest.

28% increase over five years is pretty damn good.

Labour in Kaikoura

April 5th, 2016 at 3:10 pm by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Janette Walker is in the hunt to be Kaikoura’s Labour candidate for the 2017 general election.

Walker said the Government had failed regional New Zealand and she was working hard within the social services sphere to help people in hardship and give hard-working Marlburians a fair deal.

There was a chance to turn the traditional National-voting electorate towards Labour and “knock John Key off his perch”, Walker said.

Kaikoura Labour Electorate committee chairman Corey Hebberd said nominations for the Labour candidate for the Kaikoura electorate were open until April 29.

Walker was the only candidate to make a formal expression of interest, Hebberd said.

“Unquestionably, Labour has built a strong base in the Kaikoura electorate. We’ll be fighting hard in 2017 to maximise both our party vote and candidate vote.”

A strong base?

Here’s Labour’s vote in Kaikoura:

  • 1999 – 11,357 PV 10,728 EV – lost by 1,486
  • 2002 – 12,636 PV 12,096 EV – lost by 3,069
  • 2005 – 12,515 PV 13,080 EV – lost by 4,675
  • 2008 – 10,046 PV 9,297 EV – lost by 11,077
  • 2011 – 6,775 PV 8,516 EV – lost by 11,445
  • 2014 – 6,269 PV 8,287 EV – lost by 12,570

If this is what Labour calls unquestionably building a strong base, I congratulate them on their strategy and commend them to continue their good work.

A successful challenge in Kaikoura

December 19th, 2013 at 9:47 am by David Farrar

Commiserations to Colin King and congratulations to Stuart Smith who won the Kaikoura nomination for National earlier this week. Kaikoura is a large electorate and you have to look after both the Marlborough area but also a lot of North Canterbury.

It’s very tough being an incumbent MP, and losing a selection battle. However it is also a useful reminder that National’s electorate selections are incredibly democratic. All 60 delegates were elected by local branches. Not a single one was appointed by Head Office or even the Region. A world of difference from Labour’s selection where the head office get around half the votes, and affiliated unions can stack the selection meeting with people who have never joined the Labour Party.

Colin has been a diligent MP for his electorate and a loyal National Party MP.  Stuart is a former head of the New Zealand Winegrowers Association and almost inevitably will become the MP for Kaikoura.


Wednesday Wallpaper 15 August | Kaikoura Sunset

August 15th, 2012 at 2:14 pm by Todd Sisson
New Zealand Photos | Nor' West clouds over Seaward Kaikoura Mountains By Todd Sisson

Sunset plays out on a Nor’ west arch over the Seaward Kaikoura Mountains, South Island New Zealand. Photography by Todd Sisson.


Hello all and welcome to the PM edition of Wednesday Wallpaper.

I have avoided contentious photos of Victorian-era industrial wastelands this week, though no doubt we’ll be able to fire up some kind of debate with this photo, foreshore…

Download the big version from this link:  [free iPad wallpaper] Password = freewallpaper

See you next week!

Cheers – Todd

p.s. more than happy to discuss how our images are made in the comments stream.

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The Upper South Island Seats

November 13th, 2008 at 10:16 pm by David Farrar

The birthplace of Labour, West Coast-Tasman went to National on the party vote by 11%. In 2005 the had a 3% margin. Damien O’Connor had a 1,500 majority and lost to Chris Auchinvole by 1,000 votes. Auchinvole (who once famously told Parliament you pronounce his name like it was Dock in Cole or a rude version that is easy to work out) wan a strong campaign with 160 hoardings and a large campaign team. O’Connor is first in on the Labour List, so if Michael Cullen retires he will be back as a List MP.

National finally won the party vote in Nelson. Labour won it by 6% in 2005 but National has a 5% lead in 2008. And no one was surprised that Nick retained his seat, although his majority did shrink from 9,500 to 7,900.

Kaikoura was marginal in 2002 and today the party vote was won by 23%, up from 9% in 2005. Colin King doubled his 4,700 mJority to 10,100.

Clayton Cosgrove did well to hold on in Waimakariri with 500 votes against the competent and hard working Kate Wilkinson. National won the party vote by 15%, up from a 0.3% margin in 2005. Cosgrove’s 2005 majority on new boundaries was 5,000.

Christchurch East remains red with 45% party vote Labour to 36% for National. However that 9% gap is a lot less than 24% in 2005. Dalziel’s 11,000 majority halved to 5,500 – still very safe. However National now has a List MP in the seat and will have hopes for when Lianne retires.

Christchurch Central was a great battle. Labour won the party vote by 1.4% and held the seat by 900 votes only. Nicky Wagner ran a very strong campaign but seats ending in Central are very hard to win for National. In 2005 the party vote margin was 22% and the majority for Barnett was 7,800.

Ilam has National 53% to 27% on the party vote. Gerry Brownlee also drives his majority from 5,500 to 10,800. This may finally stop Gerry from referring to his seat as marginal 🙂

Wigram saw Labour win the party vote by just 2%. In 2005 it was 12%. And Jim Anderton scored a fairly safe 4,500 majority despite new boundaries.

Finally we have Port Hills. National won the party vote by 16%, yet Ruth Dyson held the seat by 3,100. In 2005 Labour won the party vote by 12% so there was a massive swing there, yet Dyson’s majority shrank from just 3,600 to 3,100.