Wigram Woods

September 20th, 2010 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

The Press reports:

The woman who put up a strong challenge for the Christchurch mayoralty three years ago is Labour’s pick for the Wigram seat, either in a by-election or next year’s general election.

Megan will be the next Labour MP for Wigram. Little doubt of that.

But I would caution media from applying labels which are not that accurate.

In 2007 Woods only got 32% of the vote in the Mayoral election, despite being the centre left candidate in a fairly leftish city. Parker got 45% and Jo Giles (former ACT) got 14%.

A member of the Spreaydon-Heathcote community board between 2004 and 2007, she put up a strong challenge for the Christchurch mayoralty that year, polling 34,000 votes, about 10,000 less than Parker.

She polled 32,821 votes and it was not about 10,000 less than Parker – it was about 14,000 less.

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An opportunity for Labour?

August 12th, 2010 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

John Armstrong writes:

Labour will have very mixed feelings about being forced by one of its MPs to fight a byelection in Mana, even though it is one of the party’s safest seats in the Wellington region.

The byelection sparked by Winnie Laban’s departure to a job at Victoria University is a nuisance for Labour and an opportunity.

I like the idea put forward by Matthew Hooton on National Radio this week. Matthew proposed that Labour should arrange an effective mini-election in November – by-elections in Mana, Te Atatu, Manurewa and Wigram.

This could be a circuit breaker for Labour – they’d get publicity for four to six weeks, and would probably win all four seats, achieving a massive rejuvenation. This would help their chances in 2011 significantly, as they would look a lot less like the bunch thrown out.

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Nats get robbed

April 5th, 2010 at 4:30 pm by David Farrar

The Press reports:

A former National Party treasurer has been sentenced to 100 hours community service after taking more than $4600 in party funds.

Michael John Gibbs, 36, the treasurer of the party’s Wigram branch between September and December 2008, pleaded guilty in the Christchurch District Court on Thursday to the theft of $4636.

Judge Stephen Erber sentenced Gibbs to 100 hours community service.

I don’t know Gibbs, but it almost looks like he became Treasurer to steal money, as he only served for three months – his offending must have started at once.

The police summary of facts said Gibbs set up an internet banking account and was able to transfer money from the party’s bank account without following procedures that required withdrawal slips to be signed by two members of the Wigram branch.

This makes me wonder how this happened. If two signatures are needed, then the internet banking access should have been set up requiring two users to authorise.

By December 2008, he had completed 12 internet bank transactions totalling $4636.

In February last year, a new treasurer found there was only 10 cents left in the party’s Wigram account.

Pretty damn stupid, as obvious he would be found out.

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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.

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