Labour VP calls Goff out

August 10th, 2013 at 6:30 am by David Farrar

Andrea Vance at Stuff reports:

Labour MP Phil Goff is under fire for a “misogynistic” barb directed at Attorney-General Chris Finlayson.

During a parliamentary debate on new spying laws yesterday, the pair traded insults about election defeats.

Goff mocked Finlayson for being “beaten on three occasions, each time by a woman”.

“I’ve won 11 times and I’ve lost once, but the member in the chair [Finlayson] has lost three times,” he said.

“You would think that would be a humbling experience, but the arrogance of the minister shows no sign at all that he’s learnt from being beaten on three occasion, each time by a woman member of Parliament.”

A pretty silly thing to say. Goff obviously feels that losing to a woman MP is obviously more humbling that losing to a male MP – otherwise you wouldn’t mention the gender at all.

The insult created a social media stir, with tweeters branding Goff misogynistic.

Megan Hands asked: “Why does @phil_goff have such 1950s views?”

Shaun Willis tweeted: “Neanderthal man is very much alive within the Labour party.”

Kate Sutton tweeted that the Mt Roskill MP’s remarks were “bad form”.

“Its that kind of sexism the Labour Party doenst [sic] need,” she said.

Now it should be disclosed that all three commenters have political connections. Megan and Shaun are Young Nats and Kate is in Labour. What is even more newsworthy is that Kate was the Womens Vice President of the Labour Party for six years – so having her call Goff out in public as making sexist comments is remarkable.

 Goff said the storm was “utter crap” and he was only being accurate.

“It was just a statement of fact. I could have said ‘beaten by a Labour MP on three occasions’. I didn’t really think about it,” he said.

“Nobody in the House took offence at it, least of all my female colleagues. So this is a beat-up … I think it’s drawing a long bow.

“I’ve been a member of Parliament for 30 years and I’ve never been accused of being a misogynist.”

Well you have now, by your party’s own former Womens VP.

And the reality is that Goff didn’t say Labour MP. He said a woman VP, and there was no need to sa the gender unless you thought it was worse to lose to a “girl”. Think of it like this. If Finlayson had lost to a Maori MP, would Goff be saying Finlayson should be more humble because he lost to a Maori MP? Of course not.


Herald omits key facts

November 11th, 2012 at 10:40 am by David Farrar

Once again the media do not tell us something important. The Herald (on Sunday) reports:

The dire shortage of houses for sale in the Auckland market has desperate buyers going door-to-door pleading with homeowners to sell. …

Auckland couple Kate Sutton and Oliver Mannion have taken a different approach, asking Remax agents Peter Thomas and Roshni Sami to use their names in personal letters to homeowners to try to secure their first home.

So does this random couple have a solution?

They said the situation in Auckland was so bad the Government needed to introduce a capital gains tax if there was to be any relief for buyers.

They believed taxing investment properties was the only way to make home ownership affordable for families and less attractive for investors.

On a minor note, they are economically illiterate. There are some sounds reasons to have a capital gains tax. But reducing house prices is not one of them. A tax on housing will increase house prices, not decrease them.

But is it a coincidence that this random couple said that the solution is capital gains tax – the key tax proposal by the Labour Party?

Either the reporter was unaware that Kate has been the Womens vice president of the Labour Party for the last six years, or they decided not to tell the public this.

Kate was also a candidate for Labour in 2008 and 2011. The failure to disclose this in the article is appalling. Even worse it is their lead story online with the headline “Buyers begging for home”.

I would also point out the choice of “desperate” couple was shall we say debatable:

But even with a good deposit and a budget of between $600,000 and $700,000, the desperate couple are still flatting in an Onehunga property Sutton and her brother own.

So already part-owner of a property. So Kate was going to become an evil multiple property owner who needs to be taxed more!

Incidentially Trade Me has 5,220 properties listed for sale in Auckland that cost under $700,000 and are three or more bedrooms.

This is what you call desperate and begging.

UPDATE: Kate brags on Facebook how she managed to get the Herald on Sunday to write about Capital Gains Tax. So was the HoS an unwitting dupe, or an accomplice?


Labour’s Women’s Vice-President slams Labour front bench

January 13th, 2012 at 1:19 pm by David Farrar

Labour activist Patrick Leyland blogged on Labour’s front bench and how it has only two women, comparing it to previous front benches. His conclusion was the number of women is much the same as it was in the past.

However the Women’s Vice-President of Labour, Kate Sutton, commented:

This is meaningless Patrick. Why don’t you have a look at the last time we didn’t have a woman at number 1 or 2? People can explain their way out of any stats but this front bench is worse for women full stop.

Now that is a damning comment from a party vice-president on their front bench.

Another activist notes:

This is a sad situation, that’s why many Labour women are so unhappy about this recently leadership selection process. It is important for the current leadership team to recognize this issue and reconcile with the general Labour Party membership.

Sounds wide-spread.

One commenter effectively suggested that Jacinda Ardern should be moved from No 4 to No 3, ranking her ahead of Finance Spokesperson David Parker.

A contrary view is given by Meryn:

This is very interesting Patrick. As a woman I am more interested in the content of someone’s beliefs and their ability to sell, then deliver a progressive set of policies to the electorate rather than whether they have a penis or a vagina.

Indeed. I think diversity is useful, but must be secondary to beliefs and ability.

Suri says:

I think you’d be interested to know that many women in the party have directed their disappointment to the caucus. Not one has received a reply back yet.

This has obviously brought to the surface considerable underlying tensions.

Lining up for Te Atatu

October 7th, 2010 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

The race for Chris Carter’s plum Te Atatu seat is suddenly wide open after a rush of nominations.

Apart from Mr Carter, who is still seeking the nomination despite being expelled from the Labour caucus, it is believed six people are vying to stand in the seat for Labour at the next election.

Among those believed to have thrown their hats into the ring are list MPs Phil Twyford and Darien Fenton and former Epsom candidate Kate Sutton. Another of Labour’s 2008 candidates, Hamish McCracken, could also be in the mix.

Twyford v Fenton could be interesting as there is a bit of history of tension there. After Twyford missed out on Waitakere, someone suggested on his Facebook page he could consider Northcote. Darien jumped in and basically said naff off, she’s been working hard there.

Kate Sutton would be fairly strong contender, but I don’t know if she has Westie roots. Hamish McCracken seems to try for every seat.

Will it be 4th time lucky for Twyford? Will Carter be expelled? Will Carter stand as an Independent if he is? To find out tune back in tomorrow at the same bat time on the same bat channel!

UPDATE: Carter has announced he will not stand in 2011:

Member of Parliament for Te Atatu (Labour), Chris Carter, has announced his decision to withdraw his candidacy for the Labour Party in the electorate of Te Atatu for the 2011 General Election.

“In good conscience I cannot campaign on behalf of a leader I have criticised,” said Mr Carter. “It would not be fair to him or ethical of me.

So not standing, as he can’t honestly say he supports Goff.

“Of course there are some things I wish I had handled differently. At the same time I also regret that, during the pressures I have faced in the past year, I did not receive the support, advice or guidance I expected from my party leadership. However I want to look forward to focussing on continuing to serve the people of my electorate and it is for the Labour Caucus to resolve the Leadership Question.

I can’t imagine Phil Goff’s initial response to the Paul Henry comments would have helped his position with some of his caucus members. Goff’s response was that it was just “Paul being Paul”. Goff could have inflicted some damage on John Key if it were not for that initial response. I can only imagine how furious some Labour MPs are at Goff for the missed opportunity.

‘I look forward to seeing Labour returned to the Treasury benches in the near future.”

Chris has also said that Labour can not win under Goff. So his implication is pretty obvious.

Keesing vs Sutton

November 23rd, 2008 at 10:01 am by David Farrar

The HoS reports that the Police are investigating brochures put out on the eve of the election by Nicholas Keesing, against Labour’s Epsom candidate Kate Sutton. Sutton Several Epsom residents complained to the Chief Electoral Officer, who has referred it to the Police.

Sutton is a former President of the Auckland University Students’ Association.

Now Keesing authorised the brochures he put out, so why is this a matter for the Police? If they are defamatory is this not a civil issue?

Section 199A of the Electoral Act 1993 says:

Every person is guilty of a corrupt practice who, with the intention of influencing the vote of any elector, at any time on polling day before the close of the poll, or at any time on any of the 2 days immediately preceding polling day, publishes, distributes, broadcasts, or exhibits, or causes to be published, distributed, broadcast, or exhibited, in or in view of any public place a statement of fact that the person knows is false in a material particular.

And what is the punishment for a corrupt practice. Under s224(1) it is up to two years in jail, and/or up to $40,000 fine.

If the Police prosecute, it will be up to a court to decide if the statements of facts in the brochure are false or not. For that reason, I would ask that people take care with their comments.

UPDATE: Have corrected story. Sutton did not complain. Several residents complained to the local Returning Officer who passed them on to the Chief Electoral Officer.

Kate Sutton

October 23rd, 2008 at 8:54 am by David Farrar

The Herald has a nice interview with Labour candidate (and party vice-president) Kate Sutton. Kate talks about her current job:

So here she is in Landco’s 28th floor suite, hired for her command of public policy issues, Auckland growth problems, local government and potential public-private partnerships.

Besides Stonefields, the company is doing a development at Long Bay on North Shore and Ngunguru in Northland where she is negotiating a land swap with the Department of Conservation.

“Developers can be seen as bad guys,” she says, “but there are some developers out there who are working for the good of communities.”

It is her job to help convince communities of this.

“But I have to believe it. It is not a spin job – I couldn’t do that.”

Not too many Labour candidates would work for property developers! Labour will be stronger if more of their candidates have worked in the private sector – at least for a while. I’ve worked for Government, in private sector, for a charity and for myself and you learn and need very different skills in each situation.

TVNZ7 has an Epsom debate on tonight – Kate is the only non MP, appearing with Rodney Hide, Richard Worth and Keith Locke.

Labour candidate called for Government to shape up or ship out

March 28th, 2008 at 4:47 pm by David Farrar

Oh dear, one of the problems of having been involved in student politics is quotes can come back to bite you. Not so bad for me as Labour were in power from 1986 to 1989, so I had fun helping lead protest marches against Phil Goff (and rude chants that rhymed) and no confidence motions in Stan Rodger.

Steady Eddy has pulled up an old quote by Labour’s Epsom candidate, Kate Sutton:


Well the Government has not shaped up by introducing universal living allowances, so presumably Kate still stands by her press release that they should ship out!