Now a friendly lawyer has kindly sent me a copy of the court judgement. I don’t think I have ever seen a case tossed out so thoroughly and succinctly. Some quotes from Justice Panckhurst:
Mr Payne was nominated for selection as the National Party candidate for
Selwyn. Nominees must gain support at electorate level, after which the nomination is forwarded through the divisional office and onto the national office. Recently Mr Payne was advised that his nomination had not been approved by the National Executive. Reasons were not given for that decision. …
Upon considering the papers it was immediately apparent to me that the legal basis of Mr Payne’s challenge was unspoken. In particular he did not refer to the rules of the National Party and did not, therefore, identify the requirements upon the Executive in relation to the approval, or not, of nominations. …
In short, I am satisfied that there is no serious question to be tried, absent a basis in the rules to suggest that the decision of the National Executive was unlawful. …
However, for these reasons, I do not find that there is a basis for injunctive
A copy of the Injunction Ruling in pdf form is here.
Now I have no first (or second) hand knowledge of why the Board vetoed Mr Payne, but I do know some of his background.
He contested the National selection for Rakaia in 2002 against four other candidates, with Brian Connell winning the seat. I can’t recall at which ballot Payne was defeated but almost certain it was not the final one.
Now anyone who puts themselves forward for selection as a National Party candidate signs (I think as a sworn declaration) that if they do not win the nomination they will support the candidate who does win, and more importantly that they swear they will not stand against the National candidate for another party or as an independent, or even support another candidate.
As the election results for 2002 show, My Payne then broke his solemn sworn statement and stood for Christian Heritage in Rakaia. There is no bigger “sin”within a party than losing an internal selection, and then going off to stand for another party.
I don’t know on what grounds the Board refused Mr Payne’s nomination. but I do know that having once broken your written word in a previous selection, and having stood against the National candidate, I would never ever trust that person to be allowed to seek a candidacy again. In fact I would decline them even being able to rejoin the party.
Note I am not talking about the situation where people swap between parties without having sought and lost a nomination. I am referring explicitly to the situation where people break their sworn word about not standing in the election they sought the nomination for, if they lose the selection.
So Mr Payne should not be surprised he was not deemed suitable to be a candidate. If you crap on a party and break your word to it, why on earth would you think they would even consider you being a candidate. Note I am offering my personal view on the situation here – again I do not know why the Party’s Board made their decision.