I heard a few weeks ago that they saw this as a possible route back into Parliament for them. And it can’t be totally dismissed – third parties often do very well in by-elections.
Complicating this by-election is the situation I have previously blogged on. If Phil Twyford is the Labour candidate, then a vote for hm in Mt Albert may bring Judith Tizard back in on the list. You could expect to see a huge amount of focus on this.
It sounds like Winston may not be the candidate:
Mr Groombridge would not comment when asked if Mr Peters would be the candidate. He said it would be up to the party’s electorate organisation to choose. He was “pretty certain” NZ First had a branch in Mt Albert.
I find it amusing the Party President can not be sure if they have an electorate organisation or not!
Mr Groombridge said he also believed that Mr Peters should share the leadership of NZ First.
He said a co-leader would bring in “new blood”, while still retaining Mr Peters who “really is the patriarch of the party, there’s no question about that”.
Patriarch isn’t a bad term for Winston. Wikipedia describes as:
Originally a patriarch was a man who exercised autocratic authority as a pater familias over an extended family.
I’m wondering though if “capo” may not be a better term 🙂
Mr Groombridge said that depending on whether Helen Clark got the job and when she left, NZ First’s candidate could be either a contender for the co-leadership or the newly appointed co-leader.
If Ron Mark is co-leader, Ron could do quite well – especially that voting for him won’t automatically bring Winston in with him – unlike in the general election.